The 2023 GEBCO Week, taking place on 7–8 November, will bring together ocean explorers, mapping experts and stakeholders from all over the world to discuss progress in ocean exploration, new technologies, emerging trends and more. In addition to the GEBCO subcommittee meetings, this event in Monaco will include the GEBCO Map the Gaps Symposium on ocean exploration. The symposium will be held live at the Oceanographic Museum and livestreamed on YouTube.
Our oceans remain largely unexplored, with only one quarter of the seafloor mapped to date. To support activities centred on the ocean, monitor changes in the marine environment and implement effective initiatives for its sustainable use, it is critical to fully map the oceans to gain the necessary knowledge.
Increasing ocean knowledge
The GEBCO Map the Gaps Symposium 2023 will bring together experts in ocean floor discovery, expedition technology, science and policy to discuss ocean exploration, challenges and accomplishments. This year, we celebrate not only 120 years of GEBCO achievements, with the programme to map the oceans started by Prince Albert I of Monaco, but will also examine new possibilities to explore the last frontier on Earth.
Speakers at the Symposium include Victor Vescovo, who will share his adventures diving to the deepest point of the Mediterranean with HSH Prince Albert II to the ‘Five Deeps’, and to the Titanic. Fabien Cousteau will discuss the importance of increasing our knowledge of the ocean and will present Proteus, his underwater inhabited research station. Dr Dawn Wright of Esri will give her view on empowering explorers in an age of emerging technologies and technologists.
Day 2 of the Symposium on Wednesday 8 November will focus on the IHO-led citizen science effort to gather depth data: the crowdsourced bathymetry initiative. It will showcase new technologies to increase our knowledge of the ocean, such as cutting-edge autonomous vehicles and data collecting instruments, and shed light on new explorers. Participants will address the central role that ‘ships of opportunity’ such as yachts can play in helping to gather ocean data while carrying out their regular activities.
The GEBCO Symposium is organized by Map The Gaps, a US-based non-profit dedicated to connecting people and ocean floor exploration, together with the International Hydrographic Organization and in partnership with the Oceanographic Institute, Prince Albert I of Monaco Foundation.