Data Portals

Oceanographic data format

Transition to a community based standard format for Oceanographic data submission to ICES

The ICES Data and Information Group (DIG) have agreed a proposal to consolidate the oceanographic dataflow to only allow data submissions in two formats that are well recognised and well used by the ICES data submitters. The primary ‘default’ submission format would be:


The secondary format, which is already in use by some oceanographic data submitters to consolidate different data types:


Reason for this change

Oceanographic data managed within the ICES Data Centre is currently allowed to be submitted in any well described format, and then subsequently mapped to the ICES Oceanographic Format (IOF). This model was conceived at a time when computing power, and computing storage were at a premium, and there was no internet. In line with the focus in the advisory plan promoting FAIR data principles, it is proposed to bring the ingestion format into line with well described and supported community practices. This would also allow the ICES Secretariat to focus on automation of quality control and standardisation to community vocabularies. Of the 30 dataflows that ICES have documented for the Core Trust Seal accreditation, the oceanographic data flow is the only one accepting a non-specified format.

Timeline for this change
Accept existing legacy formats and provide guidance in migrating to the two community formats described above January – June 2021
Data ingestion to accept only two community formats as described aboveJuly 2021
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Oceanographic data format

International Council for the Exploration of the Sea (ICES) · Conseil International pour l'Exploration de la Mer (CIEM)
ICES Secretariat · H. C. Andersens Boulevard 44-46, DK 1553 Copenhagen V, Denmark · Tel: +45 3338 6700 · Fax: +45 3393 4215 · info@ices.dk
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