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The Roses Ocean and Human Health Chair: A New Way to Engage the Public in Oceans and Human Health Challenges

SeaHealth Research Group-Institute of Aquatic Ecology & LIPPSO-Dept. of Chemistry, University of Girona, 17003 Girona, Spain
Department of Primary Health Care, Institut Català de la Salut, Government of Catalonia, 08013 Barcelona and 17480 Roses, Spain
History Museum of Sant Feliu de Guíxols, Sant Feliu de Guíxols, 17220 Catalonia, Spain
D.G. Fisheries and Maritime Affairs, Government of Catalonia, 08017 Barcelona, Spain
Allergy Section, Pneumology Department, Institut Clínic Respiratori (ICR), Hospital Clínic, 08036 Barcelona, Spain
Allergology Unit, Hospital Germans Trias i Pujol, 08916 Badalona, Spain
Institut de Ciències del Mar, CSIC, 08003 Barcelona, Spain
Marine and Continental Waters Programme, IRTA, Sant Carles de la Ràpita, 43540 Catalonia, Spain
ISGlobal (Global Health Institute Barcelona), Barcelona, Spain
Department of Experimental and Health Sciences, Universitat Pompeu Fabra (UPF), Barcelona, Spain
CIBER Epidemiología y Salud Pública (CIBERESP), Madrid, Spain
Departament of Social and Cultural Anthropology, Autonomous University of Barcelona, Bellaterra (Cerdanyola del Vallès), 08193 Catalonia, Spain
Medical Oncology Service, Catalan Institute of Oncology, Hospital Universitari de Girona Doctor Josep Trueta, 17007 Girona, Spain
Sub-direcció Regional a Girona, Catalan Public Health Agency, Government of Catalonia, 17002 Girona, Spain
Laboratory of Toxicology and Environmental Health, School of Medicine, IISPV, Universitat Rovira i Virgili, 43201 Reus, Spain
Department of Medicine, Hospital del Mar & Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona, 08003 Barcelona, Spain
Servei d’Espais Naturals Protegits, D.G. Environmental Policies and Environment, Government of Catalonia, 08036 Barcelona, Spain
Unitat de Lípids i Risc Vascular, Servei de Medicina Interna, Hospital Universitari de Bellvitge, Idibell, University of Barcelona, CiberObn, 08907 L’Hospitalet de Llobregat, Spain
Department of Earth and Ocean Dynamics, University of Barcelona, 08028 Barcelona, Spain
European Centre for Environment and Human Health, University of Exeter Medical School, Cornwall TR1 3HD, UK
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17(14), 5078;
Received: 5 June 2020 / Revised: 9 July 2020 / Accepted: 10 July 2020 / Published: 14 July 2020
Involving and engaging stakeholders is crucial for studying and managing the complex interactions between marine ecosystems and human health and wellbeing. The Oceans and Human Health Chair was founded in the town of Roses (Catalonia, Spain, NW Mediterranean) in 2018, the fruit of a regional partnership between various stakeholders, and for the purpose of leading the way to better health and wellbeing through ocean research and conservation. The Chair is located in an area of the Mediterranean with a notable fishing, tourist, and seafaring tradition and is close to a marine reserve, providing the opportunity to observe diverse environmental conditions and coastal and maritime activities. The Chair is a case study demonstrating that local, collaborative, transdisciplinary, trans-sector, and bottom-up approaches offer tremendous opportunities for engaging coastal communities to help support long-lasting solutions that benefit everyone, and especially those living by the sea or making their living from the goods and services provided by the sea. Furthermore, the Chair has successfully integrated most of its experts in oceans and human health from the most prestigious institutions in Catalonia. The Chair focuses on three main topics identified by local stakeholders: Fish and Health; Leisure, Health, and Wellbeing; and Medicines from the Sea. Led by stakeholder engagement, the Chair can serve as a novel approach within the oceans and human health field of study to tackle a variety of environmental and public health challenges related to both communicable and non-communicable diseases, within the context of sociocultural issues. Drawing on the example provided by the Chair, four principles are established to encourage improved participatory processes in the oceans and human health field: bottom-up, “think local”, transdisciplinary and trans-sectorial, and “balance the many voices”. View Full-Text
Keywords: marine conservation; public health; participatory process; citizen science marine conservation; public health; participatory process; citizen science
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Lloret, J.; Abós-Herràndiz, R.; Alemany, S.; Allué, R.; Bartra, J.; Basagaña, M.; Berdalet, E.; Campàs, M.; Carreño, A.; Demestre, M.; Diogène, J.; Fontdecaba, E.; Gascon, M.; Gómez, S.; Izquierdo, A.; Mas, L.; Marquès, M.; Pedro-Botet, J.; Pery, M.; Peters, F.; Pintó, X.; Planas, M.; Sabatés, A.; San, J.; Sanchez-Vidal, A.; Trepat, M.; Vendrell, C.; Fleming, L.E. The Roses Ocean and Human Health Chair: A New Way to Engage the Public in Oceans and Human Health Challenges. Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2020, 17, 5078.

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