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The ocean is facing challenges from both climate change and increasing impacts caused by anthropogenic activities. This calls for breakthrough solutions to address the challenges for a shared sustainable ocean future. Digital twins of the ocean (DTOs) are digital representation of the ocean that help to answer ‘what if’ questions. Thus, they are intended to provide science-based decision support systems for global as well as regional marine management.

Endorsed by the UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development (2021-2030), the Digital Twins of the Ocean (DITTO) programme was launched in 2021. The vision of the DITTO Programme is to build a world where digital twins of the ocean (DTOs) are used to support ocean protection, ocean governance, and a sustainable Blue Economy. DITTO is dedicated to developing and sharing a common understanding of DTOs; establishing best practices in the development of DTOs; and advancing a digital framework for DTOs to empower ocean professionals from all sectors around the world, including scientific users, to effectively create their digital twins.

DITTO initiated the first International Summit in 2022 in London, hosted by the G7 and the UK. During the summit, around 500 participants physically or virtually explored progress in the development of DITTO capability, considered their requirements for infrastructure, described potential applications, and defined a path forward. The second DITTO Summit will take place in conjunction with the 2023 World Ocean Week in Xiamen, China, on November 9-12, 2023. The Summit will enable sharing of the latest advances on DTOs and discussion of future joint actions.

Fujian Ocean Innovation Center and State Key Laboratory of Marine Environmental Science (Xiamen University) will host the DITTO Summit in 2023.


This Summit will consist of interconnected sessions covering:

  1. advancing DTOs architectures and interoperability
  2. innovation of the predictive engines taking advantage of AI and ML opportunities
  3. sharing, visualising and accessing DTOs information
  4. showcasing the power of existing DTOs