With over two million species and a rich evolutionary heritage spanning four billion years, the ocean remains largely unknown and unexplored, with only 10% of ocean life discovered to date. We cannot protect what we do not know exists. That is why we have set up Ocean Census, an ambitious initiative founded in partnership between Nekton and The Nippon Foundation.

"We are in a race against time to discover ocean life before it is lost for generations to come. Ocean Census will create an immense wealth of openly accessible knowledge that will benefit and sustain all life on earth, for humankind and our planet"

Yohei Sasakawa, Chair, The Nippon Foundation


Ocean Census is a global alliance uniting our skills and resources to discover and protect ocean life. We are an open network combining philanthropy, government and business with science, media and civil society. The goal is to discover at least 100,000 new species within the first decade.

Through a combination of groundbreaking expeditions, cutting-edge scientific advancements, and innovative storytelling, Ocean Census is collaborating with ocean nations, philanthropic entities, governmental and commercial fleets, as well as subsea technology partners to mount expeditions to biodiversity hotspots worldwide.

Crucially, Ocean Census is committed to open access and equitable data sharing. All scientific findings and information are made freely available to the global scientific community, decision makers, and the public. By promoting inclusivity, transparency, and collaboration, we hope to make positive change and inform effective conservation policies. Moreover, inspiring the public is paramount to our success. We are collaborating with media organisations, civil society, and educational institutions to amplify the stories of ocean life and engage people from all walks of life in the protection of our blue planet.

Ocean Census is a call to action, a race against time to explore and understand the diverse ecosystems that exist beneath the waves. Join us on this incredible journey, working together to ensure the long-term health and vitality of our ocean. Together, we can make a profound difference in safeguarding the incredible biodiversity that sustains and enriches all life on Earth.

Join the Mission: www.oceancensus.org