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European Marine Observation and Data Network (EMODnet)

What is EMODnet?

About EMODnet


Towards a digital ocean integration


The European Marine Observation and Data Network (EMODnet) is the European Commission (EC) in situ marine data service of the EC Directorate-General Maritime Affairs and Fisheries (EC DG MARE) and funded by the European Maritime Fisheries and Aquaculture Fund. Established in 2009, EMODnet plays a pivotal role as a trusted source of in situ marine environmental and human activities data and data products, serving a diverse user base across various sectors.

The EMODnet Portal ( is a single access point to all EMODnet services, providing easy and free access to a wealth of marine data, metadata, and data products. Covering seven disciplinary themes – bathymetry, geology, physics, chemistry, biology, seabed habitats and human activities – EMODnet spans the entire marine environment from coast to open ocean, surface to deep seafloor, whilst also offering data and information on the Blue Economy operations, from vessel density and offshore platform sitings, to hosting EU Member State Maritime Spatial Plans.

In collaboration with over 120 partner organizations and stakeholders, EMODnet aggregates data into Findable, Accessible, Interoperable, and Reusable (FAIR) pan-European data layers, with data and accompanying metadata harmonized according to EU e.g., INSPIRE and International e.g., ISO standards. In addition, EMODnet experts produce unique data products such as EUSeaMap, a broad-scale seabed habitat map, the EU Digital Terrain Model for harmonized bathymetry, and the pan-European Marine Litter Database. EMODnet also offers a public Data Ingestion service to expand and diversify the data offer, supporting data collection efforts and data providers to submit their data for integration into EMODnet.

EMODnet caters to a broad user community, including the Blue Economy, national authorities and administrators, research and academia, non-governmental organizations, and citizen science initiatives. This dynamic network of experts continuously evolves EMODnet into the operational EU marine data service it is today.

EMODnet aims to enhance its societal relevance. This involves integrating data from citizen science initiatives, expanding data accessibility through platforms like the European Atlas of the Seas, and promoting ocean literacy and sustainable practices across Europe and beyond. The future vision of EMODnet is not just to serve as a data repository but as a catalyst for positive change in marine understanding, conservation, and innovation.

EMODnet has broadened its horizons to embrace a global perspective through collaborations with countries such as China and as a European regional contributor in the context of global ocean data initiatives such as the Ocean Data and Information System (ODIS) of IODE IOC/UNESCO, fostering international partnerships to advance marine data interoperability and open marine knowledge, for all.