Innovative SeaDataCloud project awarded “les Etoiles de l’Europe” trophy

The SeaDataCloud team at their annual meeting (Brest, 2019). Photo credit: Charles Troupin (GHER, University of Liège)

SeaDataCloud, a collaborative project involving the British Oceanographic Data Centre (BODC, part of the National Oceanography Centre), has today (2 December) been awarded a “les Etoiles de l’Europe” trophy.

The award was presented by the French minister of Research and Innovation in Paris, as part of the Horizon Europe summit.

This innovative project is the latest in a series of EU projects to develop a pan-European infrastructure called SeaDataNet, set up to enable the management and sharing of marine data and information across Europe and beyond. The SeaDataCloud project, managed by the team at the BODC and its European partners, has considerably advanced the technological infrastructure of SeaDataNet, with the adoption of cloud and high-performance computing capabilities.

A key achievement of the project was the creation of a prototype ‘Virtual Research Environment’, which enables data end users to manipulate and analyse centrally-cached SeaDataNet data in cloud workspaces, bringing data managers and data users closer together. This innovation is a vital building block for the European Open Science Cloud (EOSC), further development of which is a current priority under Horizon Europe, the EU’s key funding programme for research and innovation.

As members of the SeaDataCloud Steering Group, Technical Task Group and the Standards lead, the BODC, the UK’s national oceanographic data centre, has made vital contributions to the project. These include bringing world-leading vocabulary knowledge and services through enhancement of the NERC Vocabulary Server (NVS) and providing cutting-edge Linked Data expertise. Application of Linked Data standards to SeaDataNet vocabularies and metadata catalogues makes SeaDataNet much more interoperable with other global repositories and paves the way for machine-to-machine exchange of information via powerful tools such as Google Dataset Search. Under SeaDataCloud, the BODC also led an important investigation and delivered a set of recommendations detailing how SeaDataNet should meet its obligations under the EU INSPIRE Directive.

Mark Hebden, a Senior Marine Data Manager at the BODC, and their project lead for SeaDataCloud, said: “We are delighted that SeaDataCloud has been presented with this prestigious French award that recognises excellence in project coordination and European-wide collaboration. We have a long association with SeaDataNet - as data providers and technical experts – and we are immensely proud of our contribution to this latest project. It represents a huge step forward for the international exchange of marine data and information.”

Learn more about the SeaDataCloud project