High-quality research in the field of marine biotechnology is one of the key-factors for successful innovation in exploiting the vast diversity of marine life. However, fascinating scientific research with promising results and claims on promising potential applications (e.g. for pharmaceuticals, nutritional supplements, (feed-)products for aquaculture and bioremediation solutions) is not the only factor to realise the commercial applications of marine biotechnology. What else is needed to exploit the promising potential of marine biotechnology and to create new industrial possibilities? In the study project 'Ocean Farming-Sustainable exploitation of marine organisms', we explore the possibilities of marine organisms to fulfill needs, such as safe and healthy food, industrial (raw) materials and renewable energy in a sustainable way. One of the three design groups is envisioning the future of strong land-based 'marine' market chains. Marine biotechnology is one of the foci of attention in this design group. This article provides a model of future-oriented thinking in which a variety of experts actively participate. (C) 2003 Elsevier B.V. All rights reserved.