Our Shared Seas was created to provide straightforward synthesis and sensemaking of the ocean’s status and trends. There is more data than ever before about the state of the ocean, providing unprecedented insights into what is happening on the ocean and below the water’s surface. Yet these data are often difficult to access efficiently.

The role of Our Shared Seas is to aggregate and contextualize relevant resources for the conservation community, in order to empower more nimble and informed decision-making. Our objective is to help elevate the collective understanding of the state of ocean health and shape future directions for philanthropy, practice, and research.


This project is an open-access resource for all audiences—from funders and advocates to policymakers, journalists, educators, and engaged global citizens. The site supports visitors who would like to quickly get up to date on understanding ocean trends, as well as seasoned practitioners interested in staying informed on leading research and expert insights.

How to use this site

This website offers an in-depth report on ocean trends and statistics, and supports this reporting with downloadable research materials and additional in-depth resources. The main features of the site include:

  1. Primers: Learn about the latest research on climate change and the ocean, marine fisheries, aquaculture, pollution and development (including plastics), Marine Protected Areas, and ocean funding. Site visitors are welcome to download individual charts and PowerPoint decks from this report for external use, provided that corresponding references are cited.
  2. Insights: Read timely articles including interviews with thought leaders, research digests with data visualizations, and top-line news for the ocean conservation community.
  3. Downloads: Scan our curated collection of ocean datasets, reports, presentations, and visualizations to find source materials and apply to your own analysis.
  4. Events: Browse the calendar of upcoming ocean events.
  5. Subscribe: Join our mailing list to receive periodic updates of quality content.
“This resource is chock full of facts and figures and statistics…You’re able to download all of the information and use it directly.”—Meg Caldwell, The David and Lucile Packard Foundation

Project partners

This site is a project of CEA Consulting (CEA) and made possible through the generous support of the David and Lucile Packard Foundation and an anonymous foundation.

Project evolution

CEA released the first edition of this project as a narrative report that was launched at The Ocean Conference hosted by the United Nations in June 2017. The first edition, Our Shared Seas: A 2017 Overview of Ocean Threats and Conservation Funding, was commissioned by the Packard Foundation as a primer on ocean threats, trends, and the funding landscape.

As a second edition of the original narrative report, CEA launched a web-based successor in 2019 to provide updated figures and share key data points in an easy-to-use format. Now, in its third edition, Our Shared Seas has expanded beyond issue-area primers to provide additional resources for the conservation community and to incorporate voices from the field.

The Our Shared Seas platform is a ‘living’ tool that will continue to evolve to meet the needs of the ocean conservation community. Please subscribe to our newsletter to stay tuned for new additions in the coming months as we expand the site’s offerings.

Suggested citation

Please use the following citation when referencing this project as a body of work: CEA Consulting. 2019. “Our Shared Seas: Global ocean data and trends for informed action and decision-making.”

Where relevant, individual citations have been included for underlying sources.

Contact us

Our Shared Seas is a project of CEA Consulting, which takes accountability for any errors or omissions on this platform. CEA welcomes constructive feedback by email about how this site can best support the ocean conservation community. You can also follow us via Twitter at @OurSharedSeas for periodic updates.