Integrated observations and informatics improve understanding of changing marine ecosystems

Frontiers in Marine Science
By: , and 

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Abstract

Marine ecosystems have numerous benefits for human societies around the world and many policy initiatives now seek to maintain the health of these ecosystems. To enable wise decisions, up to date and accurate information on marine species and the state of the environment they live in is required. Moreover, this information needs to be openly accessible to build indicators and conduct timely assessments that decision makers can use. The questions and problems being addressed demand global-scale investigations, transdisciplinary science, and mechanisms to integrate and distribute data that otherwise would appear to be disparate. Essential Ocean Variables (EOVs) and marine Essential Biodiversity Variables (EBVs), conceptualized by the Global Ocean Observing System (GOOS) and the Marine Biodiversity Observation Network (MBON), respectively, guide observation of the ocean. Additionally, significant progress has been made to coordinate efforts between existing programs, such as the GOOS, MBON, and Ocean Biogeographic Information System collaboration agreement. Globally and nationally relevant indicators and assessments require increased sharing of data and analytical methods, sustained long-term and large-scale observations, and resources to dedicated to these tasks. We propose a vision and key tenets as a guiding framework for building a global integrated system for understanding marine biological diversity and processes to address policy and resource management needs. This framework includes: using EOVs and EBVs and implementing the guiding principles of Findable, Accessible, Interoperable, Reusable (FAIR) data and action ecology. In doing so, we can encourage relevant, rapid, and integrative scientific advancement that can be implemented by decision makers to maintain marine ecosystem health.

Additional publication details

Publication type Article
Publication Subtype Journal Article
Title Integrated observations and informatics improve understanding of changing marine ecosystems
Series title Frontiers in Marine Science
DOI 10.3389/fmars.2018.00428
Volume 5
Year Published 2018
Language English
Publisher Frontiers Media
Contributing office(s) Core Science Analytics and Synthesis
Description 428, 8 p.