International Oceanographic Data and Information Exchange

This Data Centre is a member of the International Oceanographic Data and Information Exchange system (IODE)

The International Oceanographic Data and Information Exchange (IODE) system has been established in 1961 by the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission of UNESCO (IOC).

IODE's main objective is to enhance marine research, exploration, and development by facilitating the exchange of oceanographic data and information between participating Member States.

The IODE system is composed of a network of more than 60 oceanographic data centres in as many countries around the world. They are called National Oceanographic Data Centres (NODC) or Designated National Agencies (DNA). Some of these assume special responsibilities for regions, certain data types etc (Responsible National Oceanographic Data Centres). The NODCs, DNAs and RNODCs submit their data to the World Data Centres (WDCs) (Oceanography), located in Silver Spring, USA, Obninsk (Russian Federation) and Tianjin (China). These WDCs are members of the ICSU World Data Centres.

With the advance of oceanography from a science dealing mostly with local processes to one which is also studying ocean basin and global processes, researchers depend critically on the availability of an international exchange system to provide data and information from all available sources. Additionally, scientists studying local processes benefit substantially from access to data collected by other Member States in their area of interest. The economic benefit of obtaining data by exchange as opposed to collecting it oneself is huge.

The success of the IODE programme depends on the support of participating Member States, and the involvement of many individual institutions and marine scientists, who contribute not only data, but also the necessary expertise to maintain and further develop the IODE system. Without this national support funded by the Member States themselves, the system could not exist.