About DUEproject

We are a team of researchers from University of Bologna that created a project out of the need to protect the fragile Mediterranean sea life. Divers United for the Environment (DUEproject) is a monitoring program based on the observations of recreational divers.


Our mission is to:


– Involve thousands of divers to record the presence and abundance of key Mediterranean  species


– Increase environmental knowledge and awareness


– Encourage local authorities to improve marine resources management


Biodiversity monitoring is a critical tool to assess environmental health, but institutions often lack funds and manpower to perform large scale monitoring campaigns. That is why DUEproject designed to monitor biodiversity of the Mediterranean Sea with the contribution of citizens!


Sea Sentinels project received the positive opinion of the Bioethics Committee of the University of Bologna.

Official project photographer: Francesco Sesso (underwater photography world champion 2019)

due project1

The Research

The Sea Sentinels


The research team is supported by PADI, the world’s leading scuba diver training organisation, and will inform hundreds of professionals (divemasters and instructors) on project goals, methods and how climate change affects biodiversity. On a daily basis, divemasters and instructors will involve thousands of divers and assist in the data collection.

sea sentinels pyramid3

The Questionnaire


The questionnaire has three purposes:


1. To recognise key Mediterranean species (see IMAGE section)


2. To collect data on the presence and abundance of Mediterranean key species (see QUESTIONNAIRE section)


3. To inform people about PLASTICS in the marine environment, impacts and possible solutions.


The organisms represented in the questionnaire (3 plants and 41 animals) will give an accurate picture on the environmental quality of the Mediterranean Sea. The organisms in the questionnaire are common, easy to recognise in the Mediterranean Sea and cover a broad spectrum of species (from algae to predators). These characteristics make DUEproject tasks realistic and achievable for everybody.

The questionnaires, competed by divers, will be sent to the University of Bologna.



The Communication


Mass media and social networks are a key part of DUEproject. Its contribution are the following:


– To reach a broad audience and encourage people to participate


– To communicate the results, to help shape a sensible public opinion in order to influence authorities and policy-makers to take action


See what people say about us and join the conversation.

View our press release


Follow us on Facebook or Instagram!


Sea Sentinels recruitment is now open! Get involved



Expected Results


– To reveal a possible shift in Mediterranean Sea biodiversity driven by human activities and climate change in the past decade (the results will be compared with a previous monitoring project Divers for the Environment, 2002-2005)



– To minimise human impact on the marine environment through the involvement and education of citizens



– To provide local authorities with best-practice recommendations improving marine resources management

Graduate Thesis

DUE project offers the possibility to conduct a Bachelor or Master degree internship at our laboratory of the Department of Biological, Geological and Environmental Sciences, University of Bologna.
During the internship, you will be involved in all phases of the project:


– Recruitment of Sea Sentinels divers


– Data collection and elaboration


– Communication with media and public at large


– Dissemination of results to stakeholders and environmental governmental authorities


For more info email:

bologna unibo