International Waters learning Exchange & Resource Network

GEF LME:LEARN Ocean Governance Course

Online Open Course
The GEF LME:LEARN Ocean Governance online course provides an introduction into governance concepts relevant for practitioners working within Large Marine Ecosystems (LMEs) and their Coasts. This course aims to provide project leads, partners, and others with practical approaches, lessons on governance and illustrative case studies. It also serves to promote an integrated, collaborative approach to ocean and coastal management.

The course is available at:


The GEF LME:LEARN Project Coordination Unit, in collaboration with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the International Council for Exploration of the Sea (ICES) and UNDP Cap-Net, offer a course to familiarize marine and coastal practitioners with key components of good ocean governance. As an Introduction, the course will review the governance arrangements and processes that reflect internationally accepted norms, principles, and values. It also provides basic information about relevant global and regional-scale policy and legal frameworks as well as institutional structures relevant to the governance of Large Marine Ecosystems (LMEs) and their coasts.

What will you learn?

By the end of the GEF LME:LEARN Ocean Governance Course participants will understand and become familiar with:

● Key principles of good governance;
● The importance the role of values and ethics in supporting good governance;
● The role and process of stakeholder engagement;
● Approaches to sustainable finance;
● International legal and institutional frameworks relevant to ocean governance on a global and/or regional scale;
● The role of national and international agencies in implementing these global and regional instruments;
● Key elements of effective governance;
● The importance of and tools for effective communication as a component of effective governance;
● Ways to integrate science into LME governance and assess science needs;
● Ways to assess governance measures

Who should take the course?

The course is intended for professionals (project managers, chief technical advisors, or project staff) responsible for implementing governance related components of GEF funded and non-GEF funded marine and coastal projects. Decision makers, practitioners and technical staff from governments, academia, NGOs and academia who are responsible for management of marine and coastal areas are also encouraged to participate.

How will it be delivered?

A facilitated edition of this course was delivered between January and February 2019. The course contents and materials are now open to all interested persons at no cost, and no time limit to complete the modules. To access the course contents you need to be registered in Cap-Net´s Virtual Campus.

Participants should read the prescribed content and then take the short quiz. Participants also have access to a valuable set of materials including readings, videos, and suggested web sites to further their knowledge. 

Do you have questions?

Should you have any questions about the course, materials, quizzes, or if you are interested in face-to-face training on Ocean Governance, please contact Natalie Degger (