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IOOS Summit Report

U.S. IOOS Summit Report

2012_Summit_Report_NR4_Page_01This publication – U.S. IOOS Summit Report – shows that now, more than ever, the United States requires a sustained and integrated ocean observing system, says regional, national, and global ocean experts with the launch of a new report on how a strengthened U.S. Integrated Ocean Observing System (IOOS®) can better protect life and property, sustain a growing economic vitality, safeguard ecosystems, and advance quality of life for all people. The report shows how improved ocean observing can become an increasingly valuable commodity worldwide with the increasing role of maritime commerce and new ocean-related investments, vulnerability to ocean-related natural disasters, the need to provide security for coastal populations, and the challenges of providing food and water for more people.



The report is a culmination of work leading up to the Summit and a synthesis of the outcomes from the meeting attended by 200 representatives. Prior to the event, teams assigned to various themes of the report began assimilating information on ocean observing system requirements, technology gaps, structural design, and integration challenges. Additionally, Summit organizers solicited technical white papers from hundreds of ocean observing experts, in all, authors submitted 105 documents for inclusion, which underwent peer review and are provided as a second volume to the report. What resulted is a comprehensive analysis of the current state IOOS’s ability to observe the oceans, coasts, and Great Lakes and a strategy for developing a stronger national ocean observing system over the next decade.

The U.S. IOOS Summit Report presents a set of major themes for IOOS planning and implementation over the next ten years:

  • Improving governance to address high-level coordination and support needs
  • Pursuing new funding mechanisms and potential public-private partnerships to complement traditional funding
  • Developing a complete census of existing observing efforts
  • Increasing the breadth and scope of ocean observations to address increased demand
  • Developing a web-based central “market-place” for bringing users, requirements, data providers, new technologies, and available data and products together
  • Improving branding, attribution, and user awareness of U.S. IOOS and its many contributors and participants
  • Developing common design processes and common data/product standards
  • Increasing the level of integration across the IOOS enterprise, moving from cooperative to more coordinated approaches
  • Maintaining forward momentum and continuing to grow IOOS, while addressing needed improvements.