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Explore: International Collaboration


International Program Office

fishing in India

The International Program Office serves as a bridge bringing together the wealth of expertise and technical capabilities of National Ocean Service program offices and the interests and needs of the global coastal stewardship community. Image courtesy of Angshuman Paul, World Ocean Day photo contest submission.

Our ocean spans the globe and the issues that face coastal and ocean areas are not limited to U.S. boundaries. The lessons learned from our international engagement can help us manage our coasts and oceans, while much of the expertise of the National Ocean Service can help other countries manage their ocean and coastal areas. Additionally, President Obama's Ocean Policy calls for "cooperating and exercising leadership at the international level." So, we often work closely with organizations outside of our own borders. 

The International Program Office (IPO) provides a single focal point for National Ocean Service international activities, by coordinating activities between the National Ocean Service, national and international governmental agencies, nongovernmental organizations, and others.

IPO’s areas of expertise include integrated coastal management, marine protected area management, mitigation of climate change impacts, safe and environmentally sound maritime navigation, integrated ocean observations, reduction of natural disaster impacts, and capacity building. IPO shares its expertise and technical capabilities across the National Ocean Service and with the global coastal, marine, and resource management community. In addition, IPO supports partnerships among government agencies, nongovernmental agencies, academia, and the private sector to encourage participation in planning and implementing international treaties, organizations, and agreements.

From activities in the Caribbean to help reduce land-based sources of marine pollution to working cooperatively on coastal management issues with China, Korea, and Vietnam, IPO is helping to protect ocean and coastal areas around the globe.