NF-POGO Centre of Excellence

The Nippon Foundation-POGO Centre of Excellence (NF-POGO CofE) provides world class education and training in the field of observational oceanography. The Centre offers a 10-month programme of study, at postgraduate level, to 10 students every year. Information on past cohorts of scholars who attended the Centre of Excellence can be accessed by following the links at the bottom of this page.

From 2008 to 2012, the Bermuda Institute of Ocean Sciences (BIOS) hosted Phase I of the NF-POGO CofE. Starting from 2013, Phases II and III of the Nippon Foundation-POGO Centre of Excellence in Observational Oceanography were hosted by the Alfred Wegener Institute for Polar and Marine Research, Germany’s foremost polar and marine research institution.

In 2023, proposals were invited from POGO members to host the next 3- to 5-year Phase of the Nippon Foundation-POGO Centre of Excellence (NF-POGO CofE), after 10 years at AWI in Germany. For this phase, a priority agreed between the Nippon Foundation and POGO was that the programme should benefit from the wider POGO network, for example by having instructors from multiple POGO member institutions participate in the teaching, having students visit other member institutions for short periods, or even having the CofE co-hosted by several institutions in the same country/region.

The objectives of the NF-POGO CofE are:

  • To identify and develop excellent young scholars who will become leaders and mentors in their field.
  • To improve the networking between scientists in well-established and developing institutes of oceanography
  • To facilitate networking among former NF-POGO trainees and the new trainees of the Centre of Excellence
  • To foster collaboration among POGO member institutions in this capacity development effort.

The Nippon Foundation-POGO collaboration has been running since 2005, with the aim to promote and facilitate enhancement of human resources in observational oceanography, especially (but not exclusively) within developing countries, and thus expand the capacity world-wide, to observe the ocean and address many societal issues of the day.

POGO and the Nippon Foundation are delighted to announce that Phase IV of the NF-POGO CofE has been awarded to the Ocean Frontier Institute, in partnership by the Faculty of Open Learning and Career Development, Dalhousie University, the Fisheries and Marine Institute of Memorial University, and the Hakai Institute.

Taking scholars to three unique Canadian locations – St. John’s Newfoundland; Quadra Island, British Columbia; and Halifax, Nova Scotia – the NF-POGO CofE will provide interdisciplinary and hands-on learning, through courses covering oceanography, field training, data management, modelling and coding, English for oceanography, and science communication. Scholars will pursue an independent learning project nested in the topics of ocean carbon, eDNA or coastal resilience, while also gaining exposure to industry and local tech companies and exploring Canadian Indigenous history and ways of knowing.

Scholars will be based at the Fisheries and Marine Institute at Memorial University (Marine Institute) in St. John’s, Newfoundland, and Dalhousie University in Halifax, Nova Scotia, with an excursion to the Hakai Institute in British Columbia. The three institutions have complementary strengths that will each provide students with distinct opportunities to learn.

Priority is given to young researchers near the outset of their careers from emerging and developing countries. The intention is to help develop a core group of researchers who will continue to study and observe the ocean and coastal waters in developing countries well into the future, and who will also help train the next generation of scientists.

In conjunction with the Centre of Excellence, intensive Regional Training courses take place in a different country each year. Regional Training is often hosted by an alumnus of the CofE itself. The 2-3 week long training courses have focused on specific topics delivered by experts in these fields. The goals and outcomes of the CofE Regional Training are similar to those of the Visiting Professorship programmes.

Photo captions:
1. Hakai Institute | Photo credit: Grant Callegari, Hakai Institute.
2. Halifax, Nova Scotia – one of the new NF-POGO CofE training locations | Photo credit: Jason HL Hsia on Unsplash
3. St. John’s, Newfoundland | Photo credit: Jeff Smith on Unsplash.

Applications for the 2024-25 Centre of Excellence have closed.

The next training programme (NF-POGO CofE Phase IV) will start in October 2024.

Applications closed on 21 February 2024

The 11th cohort talk about what it means to be part of the NF-POGO Centre of Excellence in Observational Oceanography
Watch the video created by past NF-POGO Centre of Excellence scholars:

Call Announcement for 2024-25 CofE

Call Announcement for 2024-25

Participants from previous years

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