ODYSSEA was founded in 2013 by four Luxembourgish marine biologists. Our aim is to promote marine biology and conservation in Luxembourg and beyond. You may wonder why one should promote marine biology in a land-locked country. We believe that we all share the responsibility to strive to protect marine resources (biodiversity, ecosystem health, climate) regardless of political borders. We need to act together to tackle problems of increasing plastic pollution, climate change, and declining fish stocks.
To raise awareness about marine conservation, ODYSSEA regularly participates in events such as the Science Festival or Researchers’ Days in Luxembourg. We also occasionally organise field courses that allow you to learn more about the marine environment and the work of marine biologists. The focus of each project is different and ranges from scuba-diving expeditions with sharks to whale and dolphin field courses. ODYSSEA does not have its own research station (yet!), so we rely on collaborations with other institutions to carry out these field courses.
The core team of ODYSSEA is formed by established researchers and students. As non-profit organisation, we all work for ODYSSEA on a voluntary basis in between writing our PhD thesis, doing field work, or attending conferences… Our team is still very small (ca. 10 people) and we are constantly looking for people interested in science communication.
Over the past few years we have given students and marine enthusiasts the opportunity to dive into our world during field courses, we presented our research at international conferences, and studied marine mammals in the field. Many of these projects would not have been possible without the support of our sponsors. We are hoping to increase the number of sponsorships in the future, particularly to reduce the participation costs of students in our field courses. Their is a sad trend in marine biology where students are expected to pay to gain valuable work experience in their field. Often branded as volunteering, students have to pay substantial fees to participate in research projects that will improve their CV and competitiveness. As students ourselves, we do not agree with this practice, but we are yet to come up with a long-term solution to cover the costs of our own field courses.
If you are passionate about marine research and conservation, please consider becoming a member. Your contribution would help us to continue our research projects and to reduce the cost for students.
If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us via email under firstname.lastname@example.org or via telephone under +352661197324.