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Terms of use

Terms of Use for EMODnet online services, data and data products*

These Terms of Use of EMODnet online services aim to provide users with a general understanding of what EMODnet offers in terms of data, product and service, how these resources are generated/served and how they can be used with appropriate acknowledgement references. This is important to ensure that users are aware of the diversity of data originators contributing data and data products to EMODnet, which acts as data broker, and the need to acknowledge the data originator. As a result specific terms and conditions of use may apply for different resources depending on the data originator and/or data aggregator providing the data services. Therefore, when using EMODnet services, users should consult the use constraints and/or license provided in the metadata of specific datasets and data products for information about conditions of use as set by the data originator and/or data provider/aggregator.

European Marine Observation and Data Network: approach and principles

The European Marine Observation and Data Network (EMODnet) is a long-term marine data initiative, supported by the European Union, consisting of a network of organisations that search for and unlock hidden and fragmented marine resources to make them available for re-use. EMODnet operates on the principle of open data[1] and strives to ensure that data is provided free of restrictions of use and free of costs. The "collect once and use many times" philosophy behind the initiative benefits all marine data users, including policy makers, scientists, private industry and the public.

EMODnet provides a gateway to European marine data, metadata and data products spanning seven broad disciplinary themes, available through dedicated portals: Bathymetry, Geology, Seabed Habitats, Physics, Chemistry, Biology and Human Activities. Each portal provides online access to range of data resources and services, i.e. data, metadata, data products and services to search, retrieve, visualise and download these data resources. All themes are also centrally accessible through the EMODnet Central Portal. Each portal is developed and maintained by a partnership of organisations. The latter work together with data originators and other data aggregators to assemble, harmonize, visualize and develop products for each theme, and work towards harmonization across themes.

An important distinction is to be made between the datasets made available (which are generally not collected nor owned by EMODnet) and the data products generated by EMODnet partners based on these datasets (which are generally created and owned by the EU and hence completely unrestricted).

Use of EMODnet material, data and information

EMODnet is a data assembler and broker. This means that EMODnet does not take ownership of the data, but rather assembles datasets from a variety of sources and providers to make marine data and products openly accessible from a single access point. It also adds value through harmonization of data, generation of data products and by providing catalogue and visualization services (e.g. map viewers to display data layers). All data provided via EMODnet, irrespective of the thematic portal, should specify the name of the data originator in the metadata.

Each thematic data portal has a dedicated page with more information related to the Terms and Conditions of use of the data and data products which can be found and retrieved via the specific EMODnet thematic online service. It is important that all users verify the dedicated data policy applicable for each dataset/product and any use restrictions or licences of individual data originators, as noted in the metadata. Quick links are provided here to the Terms and Conditions of the different portals:

Privacy Statement

To understand how we use your personal data, please read our Privacy Statement and Data Protection Notice (

(Keep link to PS in the footer of the website! à visible at all times on every page)


EMODnet thematic data portals and data originators strive to make their data and data products as accessible and re-usable as possible by providing accompanying metadata and data services conforming to European standards (INSPIRE[2]). The user must be aware that the quality of the different datasets can vary considerably and is the responsibility of the data originator. An indication of the (estimated) data quality, accuracy and completeness are progressively being incorporated in accompanying information along with the datasets and products. Where material, data and/or information on this website have been supplied by a third party, EMODnet does not control or endorse them in any way.

The user should independently assess the adequacy of any material, data and/or information on this website before relying upon it. Neither the EMODnet projects nor the data originators are liable for any negative consequences following direct or indirect use of EMODnet portal information, services, data products and/or data.

The absence of data from a particular geographical area or parameter in a data layer is not necessarily an indication that a feature or data do not exist, but rather that data may not be available or openly accessible at this point in time. Users should also take note that all portals and their services are under constant development, and that new datasets, parameters and services are made available regularly.

The EMODnet partners and the EC are not liable for users not respecting the specific data policy of the data originators who provide their resources via EMODnet.

How to acknowledge EMODnet services and data originators

Users are kindly requested to acknowledge EMODnet and its data originators/providers when using outputs based on its services, data or products. This implies acknowledging both the corresponding EMODnet project that provides access to the data as well as the data originators.

Please use the following acknowledgement statement:

  • “Data/Information used in this [type of derived work: e.g. publication/report/model/map…] was made available by the EMODnet [name of the project: e.g. Central Portal, Bathymetry, Geology, Physics, …] project, [link to the corresponding project portal], funded by the European Commission Directorate General for Maritime Affairs and Fisheries.

When using one or more specific data record(s) or set(s), reference/acknowledgement is to be made to the data originator/provider, which can be found in the cited responsible party section of the metadata, using following phrase:

  • The data originator(s) is/are [name of the data originator + affiliation; Repeat for multiple data originators].”

Where the acknowledgement is for a data layer (e.g. map layer) it may not be possible to acknowledge all data originators as there may be multiple diverse data originators aggregated for one map payer. Users should verify the associated metadata for specific references or acknowledgement requirements for the data layer in question. This could for example be as follows for using a bathymetry dataset/layer:

  • "The data layers used for this work were [name of the dataset name or layer name, as used on the metadata file e.g. BATM11_FI352003020080_78953].”



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