POGO AT 20: RECOUNTING THE GOOD WORK
Olusegun A. DADA, a Marine Geoscientist writes from Federal University of Technology, Akure, Nigeria. He is a 2017 POGO-SCOR Visiting Fellow and 2019 NF-POGO Shipboard Training Fellow.
Hurray! POGO is 20! As the Partnership for Observation of the Global Ocean (POGO) starts another milestone, I recount the positive role this organization has played in the last two decades of her existence. There is no doubt that POGO has achieved a lot in promoting global oceanography, especially the implementation of the international and integrated global ocean observing systems through her three (3) cardinal goals of innovation in Ocean observation, capacity development, and outreach and advocacy. POGO has proven to be a leader, in partnership with other international institutions, in training personnel from developing countries in the global ocean observing system, which is one of the major obstacles to the global ocean research development.
As a matter of fact, on more than one occasion I have benefitted from her capacity development programs, namely: POGO-SCOR Visiting Fellowship and NF-POGO Shipboard Training Fellowship. I recall vividly that after completion of my doctorate from Ocean University of China, Qingdao in 2016, I was looking for an opportunity to visit some laboratories. POGO made this vision possible. After a successful application for the 2017 POGO Visiting Fellowship, I was granted 3 months visiting fellowship (September 5 to December 4, 2017) to visit the Laboratoire d’Etudies en Geophysique et Oceanographie Spatiales (LEGOS), France where I was hosted by Dr Rafael Almar. This singular opportunity has given birth to research papers, and more research collaborations on coastal evolution and ocean forcing in the Gulf of Guinea, and its vulnerability, with my then host, Dr Rafael Almar (LEGOS).
Again, just last year in my quest to have shipboard training experience, I was granted the Nippon Foundation-POGO Shipboard Training Fellowship, from 29 October to 22 November 2019, on the Cruise M159 aboard RV METEOR under the supervision of Prof. Dr Martin Visbeck (GEOMAR), after a successful application. The training involved recovery and redeployment of several deep-sea moorings, station work and the data recovery of two moored pressure inverted echo sounders (PIES), underway measurements of upper ocean currents with the two shipboard ADCPs, hydrographic measurements and with the thermosalino-graph probe across the Atlantic, from Recife (in Brazil) to Mindelo (in Cape Verde).
Indeed, the positive role POGO has played in the career of early career researchers, like me, from the developing in the last two decades of her existence cannot be overstated. All the opportunities would not have been possible without the sponsorship from the POGO and her partners. I, therefore, commend POGO for the good work and encourage her to keep the good work as she starts another milestone. Long live, POGO!