SCOR's primary mission is to advance ocean science by promoting cooperation within the international ocean science community to achieve goals shared by scientists of the global community. SCOR's activities include large-scale research projects and fixed-term working groups focused on specific topics. In addition, SCOR supports groups of indefinite term that are designed to focus not specifically on research, but on activities that support research, observations, modelling, etc. It is often difficult to fund such activities from national funding sources. SCOR is currently funding infrastructural activities related to ocean carbon, Southern Ocean observations, and harmful algal blooms. Information about SCOR's past role on these and other topics is included below.
Ocean Carbon: SCOR currently supports the International Ocean Carbon Coordination Project (IOCCP), jointly with IOC. SCOR led the first three symposia in the Ocean in a High-CO2 World symposium series. SCOR also supported several working groups since 1957 that have improved the measurements of carbon in the ocean.
Southern Ocean Observations: SCOR is currently supporting the Southern Ocean Observing System (SOOS) with the Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research (SCAR). SCOR and SCAR have co-funded several working groups related to the Southern Ocean since 1957.Harmful Algal Blooms: SCOR is currently cofunding, with the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) of UNESCO, an infrastrutural program on harmful algal blooms called GlobalHAB. This program was an outcome of the SCOR/IOC research project called the Global Ecology and Oceanography of Harmful Algal Blooms (GEOHAB) project.