The State Key Laboratory of Estuarine and Coastal Research (SKLEC) is originated from the Estuarine Research Institute established in 1957. SKLEC has been strongly involved in providing solutions to resolve theoretical and practical problems encountered in the very diverse and large-scale coastal developments in China, such as the first national comprehensive survey on coastal resources, the construction of harbors and ports, channel regulations, the restoration of coastal wetlands and the implementation of engineering structures. While serving the national needs, SKLEC continues to promote the development of Earth Sciences, with increasing influence home and abroad. SKLEC not only contributes to solve the sustainable development problems in China, but also provides the support for the global estuarine and coastal regions. Over the last decades, SKLEC has adopted and promoted an atmosphere of being “Open to Collaboration, Exchange of Experience, Unity in Performance and Open to Competition”. This has been and will continue to be the basis of SKLEC.