Frequently Asked Questions

The Canadian Integrated Ocean Observing System (CIOOS) improves access and visibility to high quality ocean data and information. This is accomplished through our open-access platform that delivers observational and model data and associated metadata in a consistent format. CIOOS works to increase collaboration and coordination in the ocean observing community around the country while remaining regionally focused.

CIOOS benefits both data providers and consumers across the ocean community. Academics, government agencies, ocean industries, coastal and Indigenous communities, and non-governmental organizations are key target audiences for data management services. That said, all Canadians will benefit from improved data access for decision makers and the tools that are developed from turning those data into information and knowledge for all.

Yes! CIOOS has ongoing engagement and dialogue with Indigenous governments, organizations and communities. Together, we are exploring best practices for preservation of Indigenous ocean knowledge and data in ways that support Indigenous data sovereignty. CIOOS has adopted CARE (Collective benefit, Authority to control, Responsibility, and Ethics) Principles for Indigenous Data Governance. Contact your Regional Association to become part of the conversation. 

Contact your regional association to learn more about how your organization can contribute to or benefit from CIOOS.

CIOOS works to address fragmented and isolated Canadian data by creating an open-access platform that facilitates discovery of previously inaccessible and undiscoverable data to end-users on a national scale. This integrated approach helps to coordinate the national management of ocean data and, critically, is adaptable in the face of growing needs and a changing environment. Furthermore, the improved coordination of regional and national efforts within CIOOS contributes to global ocean observing, maximizing the overall benefit of integrated observing.

Essential Ocean Variables, or EOVs, are properties of the ocean environment that help us understand the ecosystem and its connections with other planet systems (e.g. atmosphere, biosphere, and hydrosphere). These variables are essential in the development and delivery of ocean forecasts, early warnings, climate projections, and assessments of ocean health. 

EOVs are identified based on two primary factors, their utility and feasibility. EOVs must be useful for understanding scientific questions or have applications for ocean services. Additionally, these variables must be feasible to technically, politically, and economically observe or derive based on scientifically described methods. 

CIOOS identifies and adopts EOVs  based on the recommendations from the Science Committee. The Committee considers national needs and the variable’s adoption through the Global Ocean Observing System (GOOS) for international integration. 

CIOOS is funded by Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) with support from the Tula Foundation and the Marine Environmental Observation and Prediction Network (MEOPAR). We invite individuals, organizations, or businesses to contribute to CIOOS and join the collaboration. Be part of Canada’s ocean future—contact us at info@cioos.ca for more information.

CIOOS is free for data consumers. Data providers should engage with your Regional Association to discuss your data holdings and to assess the steps for integration.

All CIOOS data are stored on Canadian servers. Each Regional Association has contracts with public (e.g. Compute Canada) or private (e.g. Amazon Web Services, Microsoft Azure) computing facilities that provide a low latency, high security platform for CIOOS storage needs. If you have specific concerns, please contact your Regional Association for more details. 

Training opportunities are in development. Join our mailing list to be among the first to know when they will be delivered!

At present, CIOOS is comprised of three Regional Associations (RAs). CIOOS is actively engaging with potential partner organizations in the Great Lakes, the Arctic, and Inuit Nunangat with the intent of adding RAs in these areas. Such expansion would establish a truly comprehensive ocean observing system from coast to coast to coast.