HATTIESBURG, Miss. (WHLT) – The University of Southern Mississippi (USM) announced on Wednesday that the initiative, Gulf Blue, will place Mississippi on the global stage for blue economy-related work.

Gulf Blue pools the knowledge of research scientists, federal agencies, industry partners and entrepreneurs to further develop the region as a global leader in ocean and maritime-related technologies.

“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.

USM has been investing in maritime infrastructure that positions Mississippi to advance technology 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