The Blue Economy is a concept that focuses on advancing sustainability efforts in relation to utilisation of coastal and ocean resources and services in an innovative and sustainable way and for the benefit of all. Key to this concept is maintaining (or improving) the integrity of these ecosystems. Development in this area needs to be managed through informed decision making, policy development and management plans that support healthy ecosystems to continue providing for future generations. The concept is of particular importance for an island nation such as Seychelles where we depend on these complex and interlinked ecosystems for our survival. The benefits from developing a Blue Economy are not only relevant to coastal and ocean nations, but also to landlocked countries who indirectly benefit from (and have an impact on) these resources. Development of the Blue Economy has the potential to support various efforts to tackle poverty, food security, inequality and climate change. Seychelles is one of the global leaders in advancing the Blue Economy agenda through, for example, the development of the Seychelles’ Blue Economy Roadmap, the Seychelles Conservation and Climate Adaptation Trust (SeyCCAT), and the Marine Spatial Planning (MSP) initiative.
UniSey was established in 2009 and has developed a range of internationally accepted qualifications, including BSc Environmental Science and a MSc in Marine Science and Sustainability. In March 2015, UniSey established its first research institute – the Blue Economy Research Institute (BERI). The institute was developed to support research in the area of environmental science, specifically relating to the Blue Economy. BERI currently operates within UniSey’s framework of operations. In honor of the previous president of Seychelles, who is an ambassador for the Blue Economy, James Michel was later added to the title and is included (in italics) in all formal communications and materials.