Science director, professor

+46 8 674 76 64


Profile summary

  • Cultural evolution
  • Human cooperation
  • Marine ecosystems
  • Ocean stewardship
  • Seabird ecology
  • Sustainability Science

Henrik Österblom investigates how humans interact with each other and with the Biosphere, with a particular focus on the ocean

Österblom is science director and responsible for co-developing strategic scientific priorities, partnerships and securing long-term funding. His research focus on ocean governance, with a particular focus on science-business collaboration, development and use of novel technologies, and improved seafood management. He has been leading the keystone dialogues process (2015-2022) and has taken part in shaping the SeaBOS initiative.

Österblom has a master’s degree in behavioural ecology from the Department of Zoology, Uppsala University (1998) and a PhD in marine ecology from the Department of Systems Ecology, Stockholm University (2006).

He did his post doc at the Antarctic Climate and Ecosystems Cooperative Research Centre (ACE CRC), University of Tasmania and at the University of British Columbia Fisheries Centre in 2009-2010. He has been a visiting researcher and visiting professor at Tokyo University in 2017 and 2021 respectively. Österblom worked as commissioner and special advisor for the Swedish government between 2002-2007.

Österblom is chairman of the SeaBOS fundraising foundation and board member of Race for the Baltic fundraising foundation. He has been a member of the of SARAS2 - South American Institute for Resilience and Sustainability Studies - international advisory board since 2016 and member of the Expert Group of the High Level Panel for a Sustainable Ocean Economy between 2018-2020.

Scientific soundtracks and inspiration mostly from Y. Lean, C. Power, Ye, P.J., F. Ocean, and always: N. Cave

Awards and achievements

  • Sweden Impact Award (2017)
  • The Askö Young Scientist Award, Stockholm University (2011)

Current funding

  • Marianne and Marcus Wallenberg Foundation
  • David and Lucile Packard Foundation
  • Walton Family Foundation
  • Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation
  • IKEA Foundation
  • Gullspång Invest


Frida Bengtsson PhD Main supervisor

Key publications

Österblom, H., Blasiak, R. (2021) Oil licences undermine Norway´s ocean leadership. Nature 590 (7847): 551 https://doi.org/10.1038/d41586-021-00445-w

Österblom H. (2019) The World is Yours. The Lancet 391: 528-529 https://doi.org/10.1016/S0140-6736(18)32107-X

Österblom, H., Jouffray, J.-B, Folke, C., Rockström, J. (2017) Emergence of a global science-business initiative for ocean stewardship. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, USA 114: 9038-9043 https://doi.org/10.1073/pnas.1704453114

Österblom, H., Crona, B., Folke, C., Nyström, M., Troell, M. (2017) Marine ecosystem science on an intertwined planet. Ecosystems 20: 54-61 DOI: 10.1007/s10021-016-9998-6

Österblom, H., Jouffray, J.B., Folke, C., Crona, B., Merrie, A., Troell, M., Rockström, J. (2015) Transnational Corporations as ‘Keystone Actors’ in Marine Ecosystems PLOS ONE 10(5): e0127533 https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0127533

Publications by Österblom, Henrik