Lisa Monti, Mississippi Business Journal -- A new study looking at Mississippi’s maritime industries spotlights the importance of shipbuilding, fishing, oceanography and marine technology as a dominant force in the state’s economy. The data show that in the three coastal counties, about 51,000 people – 35 percent of the entire workforce – are employed in so- called blue industries. Ashley Edwards, Susan Veglia and Kevin Buckley compiled the study as part of the Masters of Economic Development Program at the University of Southern Mississippi. The authors said there is a need to study the state’s blue economy further and to help the regional marine industries science and technology “cluster” expand.
“We have a high concentration, or cluster, of oceanographers, marine scientists and engineers working in maritime-related industries,” Edwards said. “We think the next step will be to capitalize on their maritime successes and seek ways to expand maritime opportunities here.”