The Gulf Blue initiative is assured to bring “Big Ideas Out of the Blue.”

Gulf Blue, an initiative through the University of Southern Mississippi, is expected to capitalize on the coast’s geography and maritime resources, further positioning the Mississippi Gulf Coast to lead the development of world-changing innovation.

“The University of Southern Mississippi has been committed to charting a path forward for our Coastal Operations that not only advances the development of key academic programs that serve our coastal community, business, and economic needs, but that also elevates our robust research enterprise – in partnership with coastal business and industry – to harness the momentum of our state’s growing blue economy and to propel the Mississippi Gulf Coast into its transformative future,” said University President Rodney D. Bennett.

According to a statement put out by USM, Gulf Blue has accumulated the knowledge of research scientists, federal agencies, industry partners and entrepreneurs to further develop the region as a world leader in marine and maritime technology.

The University of Southern Mississippi has been strategically investing in maritime infrastructure through an initial set of six blue tech innovation clusters:

  • uncrewed maritime systems
  • ocean-friendly plastics
  • precision aquaculture
  • smart ports
  • sea-space systems
  • coastal data

“The University of Southern Mississippi is one of a few universities in the country that is intentionally aligning economic development strategy with our research and academic expertise,” said Dr. Shannon Campbell, USM Senior Associate Vice President for Coastal Operations. “And now, with Gulf Blue, we are taking ownership of an attractive innovation economy and helping to grow and advance the Gulf Coast region.”

Senator Roger Wicker applauded the initiative, saying it is just one more example of the great work being done to promote the blue economy on the Mississippi Coast.