This unique textbook presents an introduction to the interdisciplinary field of marine studies, exploring the dynamic relationship between people and the marine environment.

Emphasizing the human dimension of coastal and ocean issues, the book provides an innovative examination of the complex marine–human environment dynamics by drawing on social science and humanities approaches. Applying these interdisciplinary approaches, the textbook addresses key challenges facing the marine environment, including changing climate, fisheries, aquaculture, marine pollution, energy production, and management of areas beyond national jurisdiction. While leading with a human dimension approach to these challenges, the chapters are all firmly grounded in foundational knowledge about coastal and ocean environments and processes. The textbook also includes examples of professional or academic areas of specialization within marine studies such as social and environmental justice, governance, global perspectives, traditional ecological knowledge and management, entrepreneurship, community development, conservation, and the blue economy. Ultimately, the book provides the first cohesive resource on marine studies to educate students, train interdisciplinary marine leaders, inspire new knowledge about people and the sea, generate innovative solutions for sustainable oceans, and build capacity for a new generation of marine-focused professionals.

Oceans and Society is essential reading for students on marine studies courses, as well as those studying marine governance, policy, conservation, and law more broadly. It will also be of great interest to students, researchers, and professionals interested in applying interdisciplinary approaches to environmental challenges.

part I|37 pages

Setting the Stage

chapter 1|11 pages

An Introduction to Marine Studies

ByA. K. Spalding

chapter 2|10 pages

Human Dimension Approaches to Marine Studies

ByK. Biedenweg, S. Chisholm Hatfield, A. K. Spalding

chapter 3|14 pages

The Ocean

An Introduction to the Marine Environment
ByK. Grorud-Colvert, M. Ward

part II|115 pages

Grand Challenges

chapter 4|18 pages

Wild Capture Fisheries

Processes, Technology, and Solutions
ByF. Conway, L. Ciannelli

chapter 5|19 pages

Global Marine Aquaculture Development

ByJ. D. Stieglitz, M. Touchton, D. D. Benetti, D. Rothen, A. Clark-Hughes, B. K. Haus, A. Zangroniz, D. O. Suman

chapter 6|21 pages

Marine Pollution

Science, Art, and the Accumulations of Time
ByS. Brander, P. Betjemann

chapter 7|17 pages

Oceans and the Changing Climate

ByD. O. Suman

chapter 8|21 pages

Marine Renewable Energy

Policy, People, and Prospects
ByB. J. Wickizer, D. Brandt, B. Robertson, H. S. Boudet

chapter 9|17 pages

Marine Areas beyond National Jurisdiction

ByH. Harden-Davies

part III|129 pages

Approaches to the Grand Challenges

chapter 10|18 pages

Ocean Governance

Definitions, Framework, and Implementation
ByI. Scott, A. K. Spalding

chapter 11|18 pages

Stewardship and Conservation of the Marine Environment

Marine Protected Areas
ByM. Shivlani, D. O. Suman

chapter 12|16 pages

Social Justice in Coastal Spaces

ByM. M. Maldonado, B. Boovy

chapter 13|19 pages


Understanding Historical and Ongoing Impacts to Traditional Ecological Knowledge (TEK)
ByC. B. LaPorte

chapter 14|16 pages

Coastal Community Development

ByA. N. Doerr, C. Pomeroy, F. Conway

chapter 15|16 pages

Marine Entrepreneurship

ByA. N. Doerr, L. Anderson, J. Scorse

chapter 16|18 pages

Measuring Progress toward a Blue Economy

A Critical Overview of Development Indicators
ByA. M. Cisneros-Montemayor

chapter 17|6 pages


Marine Studies as an Interdisciplinary Approach to the Study of the Coupled Natural–Human Ocean System
ByD. O. Suman, A. K. Spalding