Call for Experts: Oceans Governance

Effective global governance is one of the defining challenges of our time. Too often, key stakeholders fail to agree on or engage in concerted action to address pressing cross-border problems successfully. The Global Governance Reform Initiative (GGRI) is a project of The Hague Institute’s Global Governance Program. The Hague Institute is undertaking this project in collaboration with The Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Observer Research Foundation (New Delhi). Its primary goal is to analyze the deficiencies of the current international system and propose policies for improving global governance in select domains. The present focus of this project is on the global governance of oceans.

The Hague Institute is currently soliciting applications from academics, experts and practitioners who wish to participate in this project, which includes a two-day workshop in The Hague on March 31 and April 01, 2016 to present their research. Preference will be given to candidates who have at least three years of experience working on issues related to the governance of oceans.

The dealine for applications is October 16, 2015.

The Project

The governance of the world’s oceans has significant implications for a range of critical issues, such as national and human security, global trade, the livelihoods of hundreds of millions of people and the viability of the planetary ecosystem. Different governance arrangements have been devised to address these challenges over the past decades. Such arrangements include international treaty regimes such as the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Seas (UNCLOS) and the Antarctic Treaty System; intergovernmental forums such as the Arctic Council; interest groups such as the Alliance of Small Island Developing nations; and looser arrangements such as the international community’s response to piracy off the coast of Somalia, and the World Oceans Council with its campaign for “corporate ocean responsibility”, which involves both state and non-state actors. Given the importance of free, safe and healthy oceans, a pressing need exists for practicable policies which can help balance competing interests effectively with a view to preserving this crucial global public good.

The aim of the Global Oceans Governance project is twofold:

  1. To provide actionable policy recommendations for overcoming collective-action dilemmas that stymie governance efforts in the domain of oceans governance.
  2. To identify general lessons for good global governance that can be applied in other domains as well.

These aims will be achieved by bringing together a group of academics, practitioners and policymakers from different sectors (government, international organizations, academia, civil society and the private sector) and a range of countries from different world regions to participate in a policy-oriented dialogue and research initiative.

This project provides candidates with valuable opportunities for research and networking with a wide range of stakeholders representing strategically important countries and sectors in oceans governance.

The Process

The participants will be required to prepare a draft paper of 4,000-6,000 words (including notes and references) on one of the three research areas listed below. Each paper will provide a competent analysis of the selected oceans governance issue and contain clear, actionable policy recommendations for the effective governance of the world’s oceans. The participants will consult their peers as they prepare their papers to ensure that their work takes into account different sectoral and regional or national perspectives.

The participants will convene at The Hague Institute in the Netherlands for a 2-day conference on March 31 and April 01, 2016 to present working drafts of their papers to a select group of international oceans governance experts and policymakers. This group will assess the substance and policy relevance of each paper. In order to guide the research and discussions, and in order to improve the substantive output, each issue area will be assigned a senior discussant, who will take part in the workshop and provide substantive feedback.

The participants will then revise their papers in accordance with this feedback, providing feasible policy recommendations for improving oceans governance and identifying domain-specific and general lessons for good global governance. The final product, which will be developed in consultation with the project leadership, will take one of the following formats:

  • Academic Article for a Special Section in peer-reviewed, policy-oriented journal
  • A Hague Institute Working Paper (potentially for subsequent publication in journals etc.)
  • A Hague Institute Policy Brief or Practitioner Toolkits

Once the deliverables are finalized, the project leadership will select a number of outstanding papers and invite the authors to present their work to assembled policymakers from a range of countries at the 2016 edition of the Indian Ocean Dialogue hosted by the Observer Research Foundation (New Delhi) later that year (dates to be specified). Together with its partners, the Hague Institute will arrange for the publication and broad dissemination of these deliverables among policymakers and other key actors involved in oceans governance efforts.

Candidates’ expenses related to the workshop in The Hague and the Indian Ocean Dialogue organized by ORF (including flights and accommodation) will be borne by The Hague Institute and its partners.

About The Hague Institute

The Hague Institute for Global Justice is an independent, nonpartisan organization established to conduct interdisciplinary policy-relevant research, develop practitioner tools, and convene experts, practitioners, and policymakers to facilitate knowledge sharing. Through this work the Institute aims to contribute to, and further strengthen, the global framework for preventing and resolving conflict and promoting international peace. The Hague Institute for Global Justice, or simply The Hague Institute, was established in 2011 by the city of The Hague, key Hague-based organizations, and with support from the Dutch government. Located in the city that has been a symbol of peace and justice for over a century, The Hague Institute is positioned uniquely to address issues at the intersection of peace, security, and justice.

How to Apply

Please send a completed application package consisting of

  1. a completed application form and
  2. a current CV

by October 16, 2015 to Dr. Joris Larik at:

Further Reading

Completed: Global Governance Reform Initiative

The Global Governance Reform Initiative (GGRI), a collaboration between  The Hague Institute for Global Justice, The Netherlands Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and the Observer Research Foundation…


Conflict Prevention

The overarching goal of the Conflict Prevention Program is to improve the theory, policy and practice of conflict prevention by producing knowledge that shapes…