hcmr logoOceanographic research in Greece dates back to the late 1930s, but until the mid 1980s it mostly involved activities in the coastal environment. The Institute of Oceanography was established in 1985 as one of the three institutes of the National Centre for Marine Research (NCMR).

During the 1990s the Institute of Oceanography (I.O.) expanded rapidly, both in terms of activities and personnel as a result of its increased involvement in multidisciplinary projects from the European Commission as well as more applied national projects. The Institute, now in a very competitive position in European marine research and plays a leading role in the eastern Mediterranean.

The oceans and seas play a critical role in global and regional climate. Ocean and sea currents transport heat which drives atmospheric circulation and, in conjunction with marine biogeochemical processes, influence atmospheric CO2 concentrations. The oceans and regional seas also cover the major geodynamic features which reveal the inner workings of the Earth and present the seismogenic, volcanic and climate-related hazards to the human population. Within the frame of the above concept, the Institute of Oceanography aims at the systematic and multidisciplinary study, understanding and monitoring of the physical, chemical, biological and geological processes which regulate all aspects of the marine environment and the ecosystems functioning, the ocean-atmosphere and ocean-solid earth interplay and the solid earth dynamics.

The Institute of Oceanography is the only Institute in Greece that conducts multidisciplinary, physical, chemical, biological and geological, marine and coastal research. This research is accomplished through field measurements, analysis and field and laboratory experiments and through the study of characteristics and processes in the marine environment, at the ocean bottom, in the solid earth underneath the seafloor, the atmosphere and land. The Institute is thus involved in the study and acquisition of data and information from all aspects of the marine and coastal environment and has through the years adopted a multidisciplinary approach in doing that.