The Law of the Sea Institute (LOSI) facilitates the production of in-depth, expert research and commentary on critical marine issues, to help continually strengthen ocean governance.

The Institute is an internationally recognized forum for leading ocean law scholarship and analysis. For over fifty years LOSI has focused on fostering discussion about key issues in international ocean law and policy. Conferences and workshops have resulted in proceedings books, reports, and white papers that memorialize deliberations and propel progress through changing marine paradigms.


LOSI was founded in 1965 at the University of Rhode Island, where John Knauss, Lewis Alexander, and William Herrington quickly led it to a position of international prominence. It then moved to the University of Hawaii (1976-1996), where it flourished under the direction of John Craven and Tommy Mensah, and later to the University of Miami (1996-2002), where it was guided by Bernard Oxman.

The Institute moved to UC Berkeley in 2002, where David Caron and Harry Scheiber served as co-directors until David Caron departed UC Berkeley in 2013. From 2013 to 2016, Harry led the Institute and in 2016 the directorship was passed to Holly Doremus and Jordan Diamond.


Research in this field at Berkeley has been supported with assistance from university, foundation, and governmental sponsors, such as the California Sea Grant Program, the UC Marine Council, the Pacific Rim Research Program, and the Ford Foundation. We have received in-kind and financial support through collaboration with other institutions, including the University of Washington and the Fridtjof Nansen Institute (Norway).

From 2006 to the present, LOSI has also joined with Inha University (Korea) and the Korea Institute of Ocean Science and Technology (KIOST) to co-sponsor and co-organize a series of international conferences held in Berkeley, Seoul, Honolulu, Hamburg, Istanbul, Wollongong, Madrid, and Singapore.

Current Leadership



Holly Doremus


Holly Doremus


Emeriti Leadership

DIRECTOR (2013-2016) CO-DIRECTOR (2002-2013)

Prof. Harry Scheiber

CO-DIRECTOR (2002-2013)

Prof. David Caron

CO-DIRECTOR (2013-2021)

H. Jordan Diamond

Professor Harry Scheiber Professor David Caron H. Jordan Diamond







Remembering David Caron David Caron

Our dear friend, colleague, and mentor David Caron passed away on February 20.  David was a towering figure in international law and an expert in ocean law and policy.  He inspired generations of students at Berkeley Law and beyond to explore careers in international law and law of the sea, and helped lead the Law of the Sea Institute for over a decade.  He will be deeply missed as a remarkable contributor to the field of law, and as a cherished friend.

More about David’s accomplishments is in Berkeley Law’s feature story about his life. In addition, David’s family and friends welcome stories via email to stories@davidcaron.life. Those stories will be shared at davidcaron.life

David’s Memorial and Conference was held in September 2018.