University of Edinburgh: Marine Systems and Policies

InstitutionUniversity of Edinburgh View institution profile
Department School of GeoSciences
Telephone +44 (0)131 651 7126
Study type Taught


Rapid climate change and the global expansion of human activities threaten the world’s oceans. The QS World University Rankings 2019 placed the University 18th in the world, and our unique Marine Systems & Policies programme stands out from others. Our core courses and skills development opportunities truly embrace integrated approaches to understanding the science, policies and practice of achieving sustainable ocean development.

For 2019/20, the programme has been re-designed to ensure students are equipped with a fully interdisciplinary understanding and the skills needed to develop science, policy and in-practice solutions to the challenge of changing oceans.

The programme breadth spans three spheres of marine systems:

- Marine ecosystems – exploring marine ecosystems, their socioeconomic importance, and their conservation across marine biomes, habitats and species, spanning islands, coasts, estuaries, continental shelves, polar seas and the deep and High Seas;

- Marine policy – examining different systems of ocean governance from codes of conduct to legally binding regional to international policies, marine planning, area-based management tools, to customs and traditional knowledge;

- Marine built systems – exploring how the ‘blue economy’ including resource exploitation and infrastructure development affect marine species and ecosystems, and the practical management frameworks that aim for sustainable ocean development including marine spatial planning.


University of Edinburgh 


Welcome to the University of Edinburgh
Influencing the world since 1583 

University of EdinburghThe University of Edinburgh is one of the world's top universities, consistently ranked in the world top 50, and ranked 20th in the 2020 QS World University Rankings. Our entrepreneurial and cross-disciplinary culture attracts not only students but also staff from some 156 countries, creating a unique Edinburgh experience.

We provide a stimulating working, learning, and teaching environment with access to excellent facilities and attract the world's best, from Nobel Prize winning laureates to future explorers, pioneers and inventors.

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