National node - japan

Photo credit: Nicki Eliza Schinow / Unsplash

Introducing ECOP Japan

Welcome to the National Node page for the Japanese network of the ECOP Programme. 

Surrounded by the ocean from all sides and home to a diverse marine environment from the North to South, Japan has built its history alongside the ocean, with various stakeholders living in harmony with it over the generations. 

ECOP Japan is a network of Early Career Ocean Professionals (ECOPs) in Japan, who are actively involved in various ocean sectors (research, education, government, industry, NPO/NGO, etc.). We introduce a wide range of ECOP activities across disciplines, provide useful information and opportunities (events, employment, grants, etc.) to address issues that face ECOPS, and identify ECOPs who will support the future of the ocean sectors. Through these activities, ECOP Japan will contribute to the seven outcomes of the UN Decade of Ocean Science.


ECOP Japanは、海洋に関わる様々な分野(研究、教育、行政、産業、NPO/NGOなど)で活躍する、日本の海洋若手専門家(ECOP)のネットワークです。分野の垣根を超えて日本のECOPの活動を幅広く紹介するとともに、日本のECOPが抱える課題に役立つ情報や機会(イベント、就職、助成など)を提供し、海洋分野の未来を支える日本のECOPの発掘を行います。こうした活動を通して、国連海洋科学の10年が目指す7つの海の成果に、ECOP Japanは貢献していきます。

ECOP Japan Symposium: "Toward creating ECOP network in UN Decade of Ocean Science"


Photo courtesy of the Sasakawa Peace Foundation.
This symposium was held on January 18th, 2022 and aimed at initiating discussions and sparking momentum toward the development of an ECOP network in Japan (a country with a National Decade Committee).
As such, this event is relevant to ECOPs based in Japan as well as Japanese nationals residing abroad. The organizers hope to create new relationships and to encourage ECOPs in Japan to connect and share their expertise and experience with one another, in an effort to strengthen this national network during the Ocean Decade. They invited several speakers (both ECOPs and non-ECOPs) from various disciplines to reflect on the expectations and challenges of developing and strengthening such an ECOP-specific network in Japan.
The symposium video is available on the Sasakawa Peace Foundation’s YouTube channel, at the following link in English and Japanese.

A report on the Symposium

Prepared by Prepared by Kotaro Tanaka, Research Fellow
at the Ocean Policy Research Institute of The Sasakawa Peace Foundation 
is available here. 

開催報告はこちらから御覧いただけます(笹川平和財団海洋政策研究所 田中広太郎研究員作成)




Japan’s National Decade Committee has a brand new website in English and Japanese

ECOP Japan Coordination Unit

Kotaro Tanaka is an ECOP who aims to expand a transdisciplinary ECOP network in Japan and bridge it to networks in other nations/regions. He started his career as a marine bio-acoustician, and is currently working as a research fellow in Ocean Policy Research Insitute (OPRI) of the Sasakawa Peace Foundation to promote the digital transformation of the ocean in a way that maintain a respectful relationships with society.


Yushi Morioka is one of the ECOP Japan coordinators, helping to build the ECOP network in Japan and promote ECOP activities throughout Asia. 

He is a passionate oceanographer at JAMSTEC, where he studies a role of the ocean in climate.  He is also actively involved in outreach activities to share the fun of ocean science with young people.

森岡優志はECOP Japan コーディネーターの一人で、日本におけるECOPネットワークの構築とECOPの活動をアジアに普及させることを支援しています。海洋研究開発機構(JAMSTEC)では、気候における海洋の役割を研究する熱心な海洋学者。海洋科学の楽しさを若者たちに伝えるアウトリーチ活動にも積極的に取り組んでいます。

Join the ECOP Japan Community and contribute ECOP Japan コミュニティに参加する

ECOP Japan stories: meet Yukino Kinjo

ECOP Japan 金城 由希乃さん

株式会社マナティ 代表、沖縄県沖縄市出身。ある時、海で使用していた日焼け止めを「サンゴが死んじゃうよ」と注意されたことをきっかけに、2017年「サンゴに優しい日焼け止め」(の企画販売を開始。2020年から地域とビジターを繋ぐ「プロジェクトマナティ」(を立ち上げ、いつでも気軽クリーンアップでき、地域の人と繋がるプロジェクトを始動。協力拠点が90箇所に広がり、エシカルツーリズム、地域が立ち上がる地方創生のモデル作りを実践中。 Representative of MANATII, inc., born in Okinawa, Japan. In 2017, she started planning and selling “coral-friendly sunscreen” ( after being warned that the sunscreen “might kill coral”. In 2020, she launched “Project Manatii” ( to connect local communities and visitors, allowing for easy cleanups at any time. The number of cooperating locations has expanded to 100, and she is now practicing ethical tourism and creating a model for local communities to revitalize themselves.

ECOP Japan stories: meet Kazura Koda

ECOP Japan 香田和良さん

Ms. Kazura Koda is working at a shipping company, Mitsui O.S.K. Lines, Ltd., and now in charge of the mangrove restoration and conservation project in Indonesia under the Carbon Business Team, Energy Business Strategy Division. From the perspective of the shipping business, Ms. Kazura Koda explains the motivation and future of the mangrove project for the restoration and conservation of blue carbon ecosystems.



ECOP Japan stories: meet Tasuya Sato

ECOP Japan: 佐藤達也さん

Mr. Tasuya Sato is working in a variety of marine fields, as a fisherman, underwater photographer, freelance curator, marine biologist, and educator, based in a local community in Mie, Japan. He gave us his thoughts about the challenges that local communities are facing, the expected role of ECOPs and opportunities available through ECOP networking activities.


ECOP Japan stories: meet Yoshiko Kondo

ECOP Japan: 近藤能子さん

Ms. Yoshiko Kondo is conducting marine geochemistry research at the Graduate School of Fisheries and Environmental Sciences, Nagasaki University, investigating the dynamics of trace metal elements in the ocean and their biological and chemical interactions.


ECOP Japan stories: meet Yota Takakura

ECOP Japan: 高倉葉太さん

Yota Takakura, CEO of Innoqua Inc, talked us about conservation of coral reef ecosystem and the hopes for expanding ECOPs network. Innoqua is a Japanese startup working on developing artificial coral ecosystem with IoT and AI technologies, as well as increasing awareness of importance and value of coral reefs through experience-based learning program. From his talks, we may be reminded that there are full of opportunities towards the connection among science, business and society in the Decade of Ocean Science.

ECOP Japan stories: meet Aoi Sugimoto

ECOP Japan: 杉本あおいさん

Dr. Aoi Sugimoto (PhD, Agricultural Sciences) is a marine social scientist based in Yokohama, Japan. She has been exploring relationships between people, the sea, and coastal/island communities mainly in the Asia-Pacific region. Aside from her academic work, she has also been pro-actively engaged in marine science communications through the North Pacific Marine Science Organization (PICES).   Aoi was featured in our ECOPs stories series, you can watch her interview below.

杉本あおい さん(博士(農学))は横浜を拠点として活動を行う海洋社会科学者です。これまで、主にアジア太平洋域の沿岸/島嶼コミュニティにおいて、人々と海洋の間の関係性について研究を行ってきました。学術的な活動に加え、北太平洋海洋科学機関(PICES)を通して海洋における科学コミュニケーション活動にも積極的に関わっています。杉本さんがECOPs storiesにおいて取り上げられたインタビューについて、以下からご覧いただけます。

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