Project overview

SeaDataNet marine data products
SeaDataNet marine data products ©

What is SeaDataNet?

SeaDataNet (2006 - 2011) was an EU funded project aiming to create and operate a pan-European, marine data management infrastructure, accessible online through a web portal.

Its primary goal was the development of a system providing transparent access to marine data sets and data products from 36 countries in and around Europe.

The SeaDataNet Partnership

SeaDataNet brings together 49 major European institutes and marine data centres, including

  • 40 National Oceanographic Data Centres and Satellite Data Centres representing the backbone of the marine data and information infrastructure.
  • Research laboratories and modelling centres - experts in the development of value added products.
  • Four International Organisations.


Access to marine data sets is of vital importance for marine research. It is a key issue for various studies, from climate change prediction to offshore engineering.

In 36 countries bordering the European seas of the partnership, 600 scientific data collecting laboratories from governmental organisations and private industry were identified. The highly fragmented management of marine data meant the collected data were neither easily accessible, standardised, nor always validated. Their security and future availability needed to be ensured.


The "SeaDataNet Virtual Data Centre" was developed by the adoption of common standards and new communication technology, building on work already performed by other projects, such as SEA-SEARCH, the European Directory of the Ocean-observing System (EDIOS) and Ocean Data View (ODV). It collaborated with international organisations including the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) and the International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES).

There were several technical and organisational challenges, met in the project interdependent activities. More information about these activities can be found on the SeaDataNet web site.


The SeaDataNet project was an Integrated Infrastructure Initiative of the EU Sixth Framework Programme, with an allocated budget of €9 million.

SeaDataNet       European Commission