Ocean Expertise

Martin Koehring has been the head of the World Ocean Initiative (WOI) since mid-2019. WOI is part of Economist Impact, which combines think-tank rigour, media brand creativity and global influence to catalyse growth and change in the world. Economist Impact brings together policy research and insights, data visualisation, custom storytelling, events and media under one brand. Martin’s mission is to support the sustainable development of the ocean economy by harnessing the convening power, research capabilities and media amplification of Economist Impact.  

Examples of his achievements as WOI head include the publication of a major study on A sustainable ocean economy in 2030: Opportunities and challenges, introducing and running the Ocean Changemakers Challenge, and building a growing ocean community around the relaunched WOI website at ocean.economist.com.   

As head of the World Ocean Initiative he is primarily responsible for developing, shaping and implementing the Initiative’s vision and strategic objectives. This includes ensuring the Initiative’s leadership on global discussions on the Blue Economy as well as leading, developing and implementing the Initiative’s thematic areas of focus.  

He also plays an important role in the development of the programme for the World Ocean Summit (WOS), the premier global event at which policymakers, business leaders, campaigners and scientists gather for a full and frank discussion about accelerating a sustainable ocean economy. He regularly moderates and speaks at WOS and at other global ocean-related events.


• Project Director of Ocean Changemakers Challenge, a competition that showcases leading changemakers working to develop business solutions to ocean-related sustainability challenges.
• Project Director of Rethinking plastics in a circular economy, a research programme assessing advanced plastic recycling technologies.
• Project Advisor of Back to Blue, a multi-year initiative on pollution and ocean health by Economist Impact and The Nippon Foundation.
• Editor of A sustainable ocean economy in 2030: Opportunities and challenges.
• Editor of Accelerating Energy Innovation for the Blue Economy.
• Editor of Accelerating a Sustainable Ocean Economy.
• Editor of December 2019 ocean supplement in The Economist newspaper.
• Co-author of The Post-COVID-19 Ocean Economy: Building Back Bluer, with Karin Kemper and Ambassador Peter Thomson; in: Ocean Yearbook, Volume 35 (2021): Issue 1 (Jul 2021); pp. 1–17; Publisher: Brill | Nijhoff.
• Author of the foreword of a new book, Preparing a Workforce for the New Blue Economy: People, Products and Policies, edited by Liesl Hotaling and Richard W. Spinrad, Elsevier, 2021.
• Editorial Advisor of Protectors Oceans Series, a series of films that examine the cutting edge of science and radical thinking at work in tackling the crisis facing the world’s seas.

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