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El Pueblo es El Mar – The people are the sea

October 28, 2022 @ 11:00 am - 12:00 pm

Hybrid: In-person/Zoom

El Pueblo es El Mar – The people are the sea. An initiative of the SOS project, Somos OceanoS 2030

Speaker: Veronica Relano

IOF PhD graduate

During this seminar, Veronica Relano will present her documentary “El Pueblo es El Mar – The people are the Sea”, which is part of her Ocean Decade project: “SOS Somos OceanoS – We are Oceans.” This work explores the people stuck in the middle of natural resource mismanagement, and novel ways to start a conversation in the small community living around a poorly managed MPA.


The purpose-tailored, interview-based classification system, developed exclusively for this project identifies weaknesses in the different phases of a marine protected area. However, a peer-reviewed paper would be of little help to address the social and environmental challenges of places like San Antonio, Mexico. One of the solutions is a documentary film for adults and kids utilizing the statements of local stakeholders collected from interviews. This film of 30min is the starting point for conversations among the local stakeholders.

Moreover, at the international level, this movie has subtitles in 8 different languages, drawing attention and raising awareness in similar coastal communities throughout the world. The documentary will motivate actors to relate to the experiences and challenges of communities and the reality of ‘paper Marine Protected Areas,’ finding more integrated solutions.

Speaker Bio

Recently graduated with a PhD in Oceans and Fisheries from the University of British Columbia, Veronica Relano is interested in marine conservation, connectivity and the socio-ecological issues resulting from the mismanagement of marine resources. One important component of her research is to understand how to better communicate conservation actions to a broader audience to achieve change on the ground. Her project “SOS Somos OceanoS – We are Oceans (ocean stories for conservation)” was recently endorsed by the UN Ocean Decade. It explores the needs of people living in and around ‘paper Marine Protected Areas’, raising local voices and finding ways to start a conversation for equitable management and conservation of marine resources. Veronica also collaborates with the NGO Water Science Policy, while contributing her skills to advance the work of the Sea Around Us, an initiative led by Dr Daniel Pauly.