Endorsed by the United Nations

logo of UN Decade of the Oceans & Coasts 2021 – 2030

Hosted by

logo Future Earth Coasts

logo Future Earth Australia

Our Coastal Futures

Conference postponed due to COVID-19

The Our Coastal Futures Conference (OCF) committee have made the difficult decision to postpone OCF2020 which was due to take place from 19 – 22 October 2020 at Southern Cross University, Gold Coast, due to the current situation concerning the spread of the coronavirus (COVID-19) and the unknown future impact this may have. This event has been postponed into 2022 with dates to be advised soon.

We have a duty of care to our speakers, sponsors, and delegates and the wider community, to minimise the risk of further spread of the COVID-19. Collectively the committee felt it was also in the best interests of our delegates to arrive at this decision now to prevent the potential loss of investment people may make in order to attend the meeting.

Thank you to everyone who submitted a proposal for a session, workshop, artistic expression, panel, or one of our other formats, these will be carried over into the dates and you will all be emailed on the next steps. 

All enquiries regarding the postponement should be directed to Kate and Jenny, our conference managers via email at ocf2020@yrd.com.au

Prof Anja Scheffers
Chair, OCF on behalf of
Our Coastal Futures Committee


Oceans and coasts are changing. We're listening to those changes.
Complex challenges take a diverse community to hear, understand and act.


From 17-20 October Southern Cross University will host the Our Coastal Futures 2021 conference. This transdisciplinary, multi-format international conference will share and co-produce knowledge and enable effective action. 

Our oceans and coasts are diverse and interconnected. Collaboration is our strength, underlying and reinforcing our capacity to think, innovate, and invest in their long-term wellbeing. The 2021 Our Coastal Futures conference will bring together voices from researchers, practitioners, Indigenous peoples, activists, businesses, youth, and decision-makers. This vibrant conference will inspire new ideas to enable a transition towards respectful custodianship of our oceans and coasts.

This event, which is endorsed by UN Decade of Ocean Sciences, is designed to foster a sense of trust and respect among all, emphasizing diversity, innovation, and connections. The program will include traditional formats and other expressions, to create a new narrative on the role of respectful ocean and coastal custodianship, based on trust, reciprocity, communication and collaboration.

Come join us at Our Coastal Futures 2021 conference from 17 – 20 October, plus three days of workshop and excursion opportunities on the Gold Coast, Australia. We’re still finalizing the agenda, but a fantastic line-up is already taking shape.

We will host a fabulous closing evening event in the form of a cosy Twilight Market with local food and drinks. So, if you are passionate about putting ideas into action and you like to have fun doing so, then you will love this conference. Looking forward to seeing everyone in October 2021!

UN Decade of the Oceans & Coasts 2021 - 2030

Our Coastal Futures 2020 is an endorsed event by the UN Decade of Ocean Sciences. On 5 December 2017, the United Nations proclaimed a Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development, to be held from 2021 to 2030.

This Decade will provide a common framework to ensure that ocean science can fully support countries’ actions to sustainably manage the Oceans and more particularly to achieve the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development.

The main principle is that the Decade will address both deep disciplinary understanding of ocean processes and solution-oriented research to generate new knowledge. This knowledge will support societal actors in reducing pressures on the ocean, preserving and restoring ocean ecosystems and safeguarding ocean-related prosperity for generations to come.

The Decade should turn the scientific knowledge and understanding into effective actions supporting improved ocean management, stewardship and sustainable development.

The Roadmap identifies six societal goals of the UN Decade:

Conference themes

Read our exciting 4 main themes

Abstract work for Our Coastal Futures 2020 conference

  • Ontologies: What we Know
  • Sciences: Understanding from Diverse Knowledge Systems
  • Economies: Prosperity and Livelihoods
  • Reciprocity: Mutually Beneficial Interactions





  • $650 AUD for OECD countries
  • $430 AUD for non-OECD countries.

Key conference dates

to be confirmed