Sustainability - The Ocean Race Summits & Innovation Workshops

The Ocean Race Summits

Bringing Governments, global business, industry, the scientific community, academia and passionate ocean advocates together to explore innovative solutions to the crisis affecting our ocean

Sport has the power to change the world, it has the power to inspire, the power to unite people like little else does

Nelson Mandela


The Ocean Race Summits are a key element of our Racing with Purpose initiative, in collaboration with Premier Partners 11th Hour Racing and Volvo Cars and Official Partner Bluewater.

Taking place in inspiring and interactive settings, the events provide a platform for sector-leading speakers to showcase cutting edge innovations and reveal announcements that will have positive outcomes for the lifeblood of our race – the marine environment.

© Ainhoa Sanchez/The Ocean Race


Building upon the defining legacy of the series of seven global events held during the previous edition of the race, they take place at strategically selected, international locations, with the objective to engage and inspire local audiences in order to take decisive action.

This unique forum provides the setting for groundbreaking announcements and knowledge sharing to deliver a legacy that makes a substantial contribution to the vital efforts to address some of the many threats our ocean racetrack faces.

Amongst the issues being tackled are ocean plastic pollution, broader threats linked to climate change and the delivery of UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) connected to ocean health.

We track greenhouse gas emissions for employee and speaker travel to the summit, mitigating unavoidable greenhouse gas emissions from air travel through carbon offsetting. 

An interactive, livestream service encourages our global audience to attend the event virtually rather than travel to the venue, further reducing the environmental impact of the events.

In the run up to the next edition of the race which starts in Alicante in Autumn 2021, five events will be organised with at least five more delivered during the nine-month race period.

Over the course of the 2017-18 edition of the race, the Ocean Race Summits provided concrete solutions to help solve the plastic crisis affecting our seas with commitments that will have long-lasting benefits for our seas.

Click here to find out more about the 2017-18 Ocean Summits.


These events that bring together the worlds of sport, industry, government, science  and ocean advocates, are a vital part of the collaborative steps that are being taken to tackle the ubiquitous pollution of the ocean with plastic debris as well as the broader threats to the oceans health

His Royal Highness Prince Charles

Innovation Workshops

To complement The Ocean Race Summits, we have introduced the Innovation Workshop concept as part of our sustainable event portfolio. The seminars challenge industry leaders and experts to explore new ways of working on a range of issues that link their value chain with ocean pollution.

Tailored to the specific needs of a business-focused audience, the workshops have a shared objective of effecting maximum change through collaboration.

© Ainhoa Sanchez/The Ocean Race

Convened after The Ocean Race Summits, they allow smaller, targeted groups to define ways to integrate cutting edge sustainability practices within their particular sector. Topics examined at the first workshops in Genoa, Italy, were ‘Sustainable Fashion & Textiles’ and ‘Sustainable Boat Building’.

The challenge set down to industry leaders and experts is to collectively create a roadmap of realistic, concrete steps that advance solutions, potentially through a circular approach, which are scalable and achievable.

Future Innovation Workshops will revisit the themes explored to continue to drive systemic change and cement the legacy they have created.

This is a unique opportunity to create a coalition between sport, business, and policymakers.

Wendy Schmidt, President of The Schmidt Family Foundation and Co-founder of 11th Hour Racing

© Pedro Martinez/Volvo AB