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Why was SeaWeb created?

SeaWeb was founded in 1996 on the belief that the power of communications can be harnessed to protect the ocean. The underlying premise was that as more people begin to understand and appreciate Earth as a water planet, they will take action to conserve the ocean and the life within it. For more about the origins of SeaWeb, see Success Stories.

Does the name SeaWeb refer to the World Wide Web?

No. When SeaWeb was founded in 1996, the primary inspiration for the name was the ecological concept of the "web of life." SeaWeb also refers to a dynamic web of communications tools and activities to promote ocean conservation and strategically connect individuals and groups working on these issues.

Why does SeaWeb focus exclusively on ocean conservation?

Earth truly is a water planet – in fact, water covers more than 70 percent of the Earth's surface. The global ocean plays myriad roles in sustaining life, including regulating our climate, generating oxygen, providing a major source of animal protein for humans, and much more. As long as the health of the ocean is at risk, both the global environment and the health of humanity overall are at risk.

What are some of the major threats to the ocean?

The major threats to the ocean include the depletion of marine life, in particular from overfishing and destructive fishing practices; pollution, including chemical pollution, nutrient pollution and marine debris; ocean acidification; and global climate change.

How is SeaWeb different from other ocean conservation organizations?

SeaWeb combines its unique, collaborative approach and strategic communications with sound science to catalyze positive change for our ocean. We harness the power of social science techniques, such as conducting in-depth interviews and opinion surveys, to gain insight into human perceptions, behavior and level of knowledge about marine issues. This research and the latest ocean science guide our efforts so we can effectively communicate and raise awareness of critical issues in order to build momentum for strong ocean policies and market-based solutions.

We continue to educate, engage and inspire the ocean spokespeople, champions and partners we cultivate through our various initiatives, activities and resources. Through this collaboration and continuous engagement, SeaWeb weaves together multiple, diverse and powerful voices for a healthy ocean.

What is social marketing and how does SeaWeb use it?

Social marketing combines the techniques of social science research, such an in-depth interviews and surveys, with marketing campaign strategies to achieve a change in behavior in targeted audiences that leads to a benefit for society. Social marketing conveys ideas to change attitudes and behaviors for a greater good rather than selling products for the benefit of the marketer. By using strategic communications and social marketing techniques and campaigns, SeaWeb works to achieve strong ocean policies and market solutions to the many threats to our ocean.

What principles guide SeaWeb's work?

We are:

  • Science-based: SeaWeb's approach is grounded in the leading research in the natural and social sciences.
  • Communications-driven: SeaWeb uses its expertise to effectively communicate the latest science and resulting policy solutions into understandable, actionable initiatives that raise awareness of ocean issues and catalyze positive change.
  • Independent: SeaWeb is not affiliated with a political party, interest group or business. We are an independent nonprofit resource for scientifically based ocean information, policy solutions and sustainable industry practices.
  • Integrated: SeaWeb unites leaders across sectors of society and leverages the power of markets, science, social marketing and strategic communications to provide decision-makers with the most accurate, credible information to forge innovative policy solutions.
  • International: Our reach is international. We work where we can best add value as partners and lend our expertise to create stronger voices for the global ocean.

What are some of SeaWeb's significant accomplishments?

Please see our Success Stories, Initiatives and SeaWeb in Action for more information.

How is SeaWeb funded?

SeaWeb is able to lead voices for a healthy ocean through the generous and charitable donations from our supporters. SeaWeb receives most of its support from private charitable foundations and a smaller, yet increasingly significant amount from individuals who share our commitment to a healthy ocean.

SeaWeb recognizes the value of each contribution given, and we work to ensure the maximum possible is used to create a better ocean conservation environment.

Can I become a member of SeaWeb?

While SeaWeb does not maintain a formal membership, we do accept and appreciate the support of individuals and offer a number of free resources, such as e-newsletters, through our website. For ways you can help the ocean and SeaWeb, see Get Involved.

Where is SeaWeb based?

We are based out of offices around the Atlantic Ocean in Washington, D.C.; London, England; Paris, France; and the Pacific Ocean in San Francisco, California; Suva, Fiji; and Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea. For contact information, see Contact Us.

Where can I find additional information?

See About Us and our Initiatives for more information about SeaWeb and our work. For information that is not on our website, e-mail us at contactus@seaweb.org.