The Ocean Data and Information Network for the Black Sea (ODINBLACKSEA) Pilot Project was established formally during the Nineteenth Session of the IODE Committee (Trieste, Italy, March 2007) through the Recommendation IODE-XIX.10 based on the following.
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The lives of at least 160 million people are profoundly influenced by the Black Sea and considering that all riparian countries depend to a large extent on marine and coastal resources, the ability to acquire, manage, archive and disseminate data, as well as the capacity to generate products and services in support of decision making and management of the Sea and Coastal Zones is of vital importance. The Ocean Data and Information Network for the Black Sea Region (ODINBLACKSEA) Pilot Project was proposed by the riparian countries to respond to these needs through: (i) providing assistance in the development, operation and strengthening of National Oceanographic Data (and Information) Centres and to establish their networking in the region; (ii) providing training and education in marine data and information management, taking into account the requirements of operational oceanography; applying standard formats and methodologies as defined by the IODE; (iii) enhancing national and regional awareness for Marine Data and Information Management; (iv) assisting in the development and maintenance of national and regional marine data, metadata and information databases; (v) assisting in the development and dissemination of marine data and information products and services, meeting the needs of user communities at the national and regional levels, and responding to national and regional priorities; (vi) undertaking the ODINBLACKSEA activities in close collaboration and networking with other relevant organizations, programmes and projects operating in the Black Sea region; and (vii) undertaking the above activities applying modern technologies for data collecting, processing, storing and disseminating. It is proposed to make the E2EDM (End to End Data Management) technology a basis of ODINBLACKSEA. In addition, ODINBLACKSEA will satisfy the requirements of the other IOC programmes (e.g. BlackSeaGOOS), as well as other organizations (e.g. Commission on the Protection of the Black Sea against Pollution, Black Sea Economic Cooperation), programmes and projects (e.g. BSERP, ASCABOS, SeaDataNet, BlackSeaScene, ECOOP, SESAME, ESONET) active in the region, in terms of capacity building, and management and exchange of oceanographic data and information.
The ODINBLACKSEA proposal was discussed first in the frame of SIBEMA project. The idea was discussed in detail through electronic communications with all IODE national coordinators in the Black Sea region (Bulgaria, Georgia, Romania, Russia, Turkey, Ukraine). They agreed that ODINBLACKSEA should become a capacity building instrument for further development of NODC structure in the region and will support BlackSeaGOOS and other regional initiatives. All of them expressed their support for the establishment of ODINBLACKSEA. It was decided that the project will be directed, monitored and supervised by the Project Steering Committee. This Project Steering Committee is composed of the IODE National Coordinators from the participating Black Sea Countries. It is recommended that the steering committee will meet once a year. The Steering committee has a Chairperson. Day to day project activities will be managed by the Project Coordinator. The first Chairperson and the Project Coordinator will be elected by the steering committee and every two years they will rotate among the participating countries. It was recommended as well to set up the ODINBLACKSEA Project Office equipped with all the necessary communication tools to support everyday activities.
The development and implementation of the ODINBLACKSEA project will be based on the success and lessons learnt from the other IODE ODIN projects, in particular, ODINAFRICA, ODINCARSA (Caribbean and South America region) and ODINCINDIO (Central Indian Ocean region).
The proposed funding of the project could include in-kind support from the participating countries, in-kind and cash support from the international projects operating in the region, donor funding, and IOC support for the Project Steering Committee meetings. The first support has already been negotiated with the Institute of Oceanology (Bulgarian Academy of Sciences) and with the SIBEMA project which will support the ODINBLACKSEA start-up activities.