IOCARIBE is a regional subsidiary body of the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC). It is the IOC Sub-Commission for the Caribbean and Adjacent Regions and is responsible for the promotion, development and co-ordination of IOC marine scientific research programmes, the ocean services, and related activities, including training, education and mutual assistance (TEMA) in the Caribbean and Adjacent Regions. In establishing its programmes, it takes into account the specific interests and needs of the Member States in the region.
IOCARIBE can be envisaged as an international networking system created by the Governments of Member States, for the co-ordination and promotion of marine and coastal sciences and associated operational services in the region.
Its major objectives are to:
- Reinforce and broaden scientific co-operation, regionally and internationally through networking and institutional arrangements with organizations operating within and without the region, for example, UN bodies, IGOs, NGOs, the scientific community;
- Provide regional input to global ocean sciences and observation programmes;
- Promote and facilitate implementation of IOC global science programmes and ocean services at the regional level;
- Foster the generation of knowledge, sharing of information, expertise and experience on the wider Caribbean and its coastlines; and to
- Assist Member States to develop their capacity to formulate national policies and plans to meet their needs in marine science and technology
IOCARIBE is not a funding agency. The Sub-Commission lends its credibility, and validates and endorses fund-raising efforts. Moreover, it assists in the avoidance of duplication, waste and inefficient use of funds and resources emanating from different sources into the region for scientific projects and initiatives. Most of IOCARIBE's support for its programmes comes from external sources or is requested from Member States in the region.
Donor support is also sought through the intergovernmental mechanism and through IOC. Liaison is maintained with regional organizations (UN, IGOs, NGOs) and programmes co-operating with the Sub-Commission at the regional level for example, UNESCO/CSI, CARICOMP, UNDP, UNEP/CEP, IMO, CARICOM, OECS, ACS, IAI, CMO, IRF.