Launch in Sight: sub:marine – Our Sub-conference on Seas, Oceans and Climate Change


Nelly Ben Hayoun Shot from "Space Viking"

We’ve got our very own personal “March for Science” at the re:publica this year with sub:marine, the sub-conference organised in cooperation with the Science Year 2016*17 – Seas and Oceans.

The point of departure is sinister: in early April, scientists announced that two thirds of the Great Barrier Reef, the largest coral reef in the world off the coast of Australia, is threatened by unprecedented levels of bleaching due to cyclones and an increase in temperatures (the result of human-induced climate change) – meaning that an entire ecosystem is in danger. This is only one of the many marine-environmental problems we are confronted with today and will continue to be confronted with in the future.


#rp17 speaker: Ulrich Bathmann with his talk Küstenmeere im Stress (DE) will speak on Monday at Stage 3. 

By now, it will have become clear that it is time for an interdisciplinary consideration of what we, as the “Internet community”, can do to protect the oceans. This can mean rethinking science communication, for example, to win over large sections of the population for environmental policies. Or: employing one’s own extensive knowledge on technologies for the benefit of a higher, overall objective.


Coral Empathy Device by Kat Austen

And: we also want to actively observe how the aesthetics of the ocean can allow us to contemplate ourselves and how we develop and exploit the environment; to contemplate it in terms of resources and political spaces. We need only read the reports on refugee tragedies in the Mediterranean to understand that seas are also political spheres in a very human sense as well. The field is wide and conflict-laden. You can find the complete programme here:submarine. To help you get an overview, we’ve put together a presentation of all the sub:marine events and talks here:

Non-Swimmers – The introductory talks:

These introductory talks will be focused on giving an overview of the relationship between climate research and the seas, Polynesia and the Bodden Coast in Germany; viewing the ocean as a supplier of raw materials and space for governmentality. Why science funding is crucial and what we can, and should, demand as citizens. And: what we can learn about the future of marine science and research from space exploration.


Smart Ocean – the ocean as a supplier of data and space for technological innovation:

These sessions will consider the use of technology in the world’s oceans to help us learn how data can be used in the sciences – and that, next to temperatures and plastic particles, acoustic noise pollution in the seas is also measureable:


SOS – Calls to Action:

How are technologies and artistic and communication strategies implemented, for example, to help save refugees journeying by sea? Why are fish shoals monitored – and what does modern science communication look like?


Sea more – Ocean Aesthetics and Science Art:

Oceans have always inspired writers and other artists – and one can also clearly feel its effects in science communication. The sub:marine will be represented on our stages, at the labore:tory in the Kühlhaus and at the Makerspace in the main hall, with workshops, exhibitions and talks communicating aesthetic access points to help people experience the range of topics surrounding seas and oceans.


There will also be additional programme on offer at the Science Year and KDM (Konsortium Deutscher Meeresforscher) booth in our Main Hall:

1:30 p.m.: Scientific Poster – Tom Duscher
     4 p.m.: Reading / Short lecture on the “Stories from the Future” comic – Philipp Schrögel
     5 p.m.: Short lecture “Future Visions for the Oceans from the Year 1900” – Philipp Schrögel
11 a.m.: Short lecture “Future Visions for the Oceans from the Year 1900” 
12 a.m.:  Scientific Poster
  2 p.m.:  Reading/Short lecture on the “Stories from the Future” comic
  4 p.m.: Scientific Poster
  5 p.m.: Short lecture/Discussion “Minecraft and more – Examples for digital education” – Uli Tausend
11 a.m.: Reading/Short lecture (10 minutes) on “Stories from the Future” comic
12.a.m.:  Scientific Poster
  2 p.m.:  Short lecture (10 minutes) “Future Visions for the Oceans from the Year 1900”
  4 p.m.: Scientific Poster
  5 p.m.: Short lecture/Discussion “Minecraft and more – Examples for digital education”

Credit: Nelly Ben Hayoun Shot from "Space Viking"; Coral Empathy Device by Kat Austen