The Barcelona Foundation for Ocean Sailing (FNOB), was created with three strategic objectives in mind: sports, industry & technology and communication, and devised to undertake a series of projects geared towards promoting and boosting activities related to top-level ocean sailing.
To fulfil these objectives, the FNOB defined four key strategic areas: R&D, Education and Knowledge, Science & Technology and the Environment.
The creation of the FNOB in 2005 was the result of the work of a platform formed by the Barcelona City Council, the Fira de Barcelona (Barcelona Trade Fair), the Autoritat Portuària de Barcelona (Barcelona Port Authority) and the Barcelona Chamber of Commerce, with the EL FAR Consortium as its coordinator.
The FNOB is currently working on its four key strategic areas to obtain the commitment and contribution of university, institutional and corporate fabrics, and thus conduct high-value projects.
PROJECTS OF THE FNOB
The main and most important project undertaken by the FNOB to date is the Barcelona World Race, the round the world, two-crew, non-stop sailboat race. This regatta has already held two editions (2007-2008 and 2010 -2011) and is planning its third for 2014-2015 (departure on 31 December). The Barcelona World Race was conceived with the objective of supporting the needs of the City of Barcelona’s Strategic Sports Plan (2002). The Plan identified a niche in the nautical sports events market which the city of Barcelona could pursue. In addition, the conception of the Barcelona World Race covered the opportunity to institute a two-crew, non-stop, round the world race on-board Open 60 sailboats as part of the international IMOCA calendar. And so it was that the first regatta of its kind to bear the name of the city of Barcelona was born.
For the FNOB, the Barcelona World Race is more than just the ultimate cover letter. It constitutes a reason to undertake a whole series of projects and activities revolving around the race which, on the one hand, cover the technical and sporting needs of the participating skippers and, on the other hand, serve as a promotional platform for the actual regatta and the city, create value for its sponsors and generate visibility for ocean sailing and the Imoca / Open 60 category.
These projects include:
o Transoceanic Events: based on the twinning of two cities though culture and sports.
o The New York -Barcelona Transoceanic Sailing Record
o Promotional IMOCA fleet races
o The Europa Tour- Imoca Warm Up
o Campus: activities related to education and to the history and culture of sailing
o 2nd International Conference on Ocean Sailing
o The Barcelona World Race Interpretation Centre
o The Sailing for Science Exhibition
o Scientific Communication Seminar
o Educational programme
o Tall Ships Races
Going one step further, and in relation to the Barcelona World Race, the FNOB has become aware of its responsibility towards society and of the need to create value in terms of its actions. It is therefore working hard to gain the commitment and involvement of university, institutional and business fabrics. Here are some of the agreements and partnerships promoted by the FNOB:
o Agreement with the Instituto de Ciencias del Mar (ICM, the Institute of Marine Sciences) and the Consejo Superior de Investigaciones Científicas (CSIC, the Higher Council for Scientific Research) to undertake research, educational and outreach activities on water bodies and oceanography. This project has been awarded by the UNESCO’s International Oceanographic Commission (IOC) and by the 44º International Liège Colloquium on Ocean Dynamics.
o Agreement with the Instituto Químico de Sarrià (IQS, the Chemical Institute of Sarria) - Universidad Ramón LLull (URLL) on development and innovation activities linked to the recovery of sailboat sailing materials.
o Agreement with the Universidad Pompeu Fabra (UPF, Pompeu Fabra University) - Interactive technology group for the development of a virtual real-time game that allows to follow the regatta while simultaneously serving as a learning platform.
o Agreement with the Leitat Technology Centre, the Instituto Químico de Sarrià ( IQS)- Universidad Ramón LLull (URLL), Quantum Europa Manufacturing SL , Laminados de Catalunya, PJM Pujades SA and the PWIN–D project, towards development and innovation activities, in the successive editions of the Barcelona World Race, to achieve navigation improvements in the Open 60’s.
o Collaboration with the CIRE (Centre d’Iniciatives per a la Reinserció, the Centre for Reinsertion Initiatives) – Generalitat de Catalunya, for the recycling and reuse of components of Open 60 boats participating in the Regatta.
o Collaboration with the UPC (Universidad Politécnica de Cataluña. Polytechnic University of Catalonia), for the creation of the 1st Sailing and the Environment prize to promote the human, scientific and technological values of ocean sailing. Project valued with a 91 from 100 points by the Ministerio de Ciencia y Educación, Science and Education Ministry. Aids programme to promote Science and Innovation.
o Collaboration with the GENCAT- Technology Service to promote the acquisition of the knowledge of the department of education for the dissemination and implementation of the Educational Project of the Barcelona World Race.
o Collaboration with the Insituto Municipal de Educación de Barcelona (IMEB, the Municipal Education Institute of Barcelona) to promote the participation of schools and the deployment of the Educational Programme which revolves around the tracking of the Regatta and is didactic exploitation.
The FNOB’s current intent is to carry on developing new partnership channels in relation to environmental protection (seas and oceans), renewable energies, new technologies and student internship projects.
In terms of aspects regarding the City of Barcelona, the FNOB, in coordination with the Instituto de Cultura de Barcelona (ICUB, the Cultural Institute of Barcelona ), is actively involved in proposing actions and events geared towards promoting knowledge on seafaring traditions and ocean sailing, while contributing to the city's activity schedule.
In 2010, in order to work with its immediate surroundings, the FNOB recovered a Tug Building located on the Levante Pier in Barcelona (in the Barceloneta neighbourhood). The purpose of this recovery was to retain the building’s traditional architecture while adapting it for use as the headquarters of the Barcelona World Race Interpretation Centre.