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Master of Science in Marine and Lacustrine Science and Management (‘Oceans & Lakes’)


Summary ICP ‘Oceans & Lakes’ – VLIR-UOS

‘Oceans & Lakes’, short for the MSc Marine and Lacustrine Science and Management, addresses research and management for wise use of all type of aquatic bodies: oceans, coasts, rivers and lakes and river catchments. Human livelihood depends on ‘aquatic ecosystems’ directly through resources derived from them, but less conspicuously through the ecosystem services they offer. Many water bodies are transboundary, many are of global concern and most are in developing countries. This dictates the need for knowledge and for understanding of ecological processes. Exploitation and often decline of these life support systems progresses faster than our understanding and wise management. Three universities in Flanders, the Universiteit Antwerpen, the Universiteit Gent and the Vrije Universiteit Brussel joined complementary expertise at the highest level they can offer, supplemented with experts from research institutions. Essential support of experts, mostly Flanders-trained, from the ‘South’ is increasingly included. Lecturers whether from Flanders or the South share an interest for aquatic ecosystems, irrespective of their location, in a global interest, as the world’s commons. ‘Oceans & Lakes’ has a wide yet integrated scope: geology and biology (ecology), fundamental processes, exploitation of aquatic resources (fisheries, mining), human dependence and policy and legislation. The 2-year programme welcomes participants from developing countries jointly with ‘North’ students in order to exploit complementary expertise and strengths through peer training, while promoting North-South and South-South networking. MSc research is hands-on and predominantly (for VLIR scholarship holders) or frequently (for non-DC students) in development-specific contexts. Apart from intensive course and practical training in Flanders following 4 major and specialised trajectories, the present call includes the development and the inclusion of a concrete South component, with ECTS. ‘Oceans & Lakes’ has enjoyed a high professional and home institution return rate and hence can boast of effective capacity-building impact.

Intervention type

International Master Programme


01/01/2017 - 31/12/2021

This project is being implemented in:
Flemish promoter Nico Koedam
Local partner institution Vrije Universiteit Brussel
visit www.vub.ac.be
Other Flemish Partners Universiteit Antwerpen
visit www.uantwerpen.be
Universiteit Gent
visit www.ugent.be
Budget € 749.722