GEO-XIII Plenary Session

7-10 November 2016, St.  Petersburg, Russian Federation

The GEO-XIII Plenary and Exhibition took place at the Park Inn by Radisson Pribaltiyskaya hotel in St. Petersburg (Russian Federation) from 7 to 10 November 2016 (http://www.earthobservations.org/geo13.php).

GEO is a unique global network, including more than 100 national governments and in excess of 100 Participating Organizations that envisions a future where decisions and actions for the benefit of humankind are informed by coordinated, comprehensive and sustained Earth observations.

The GEO Plenary is the highest decision-making body of GEO. The GWP presents the activities that GEO undertakes to realize its Vision, Mission and Strategic Objectives and approves the Work Programme for the forthcoming years. ECOPOTENTIAL is actively contributing to GEO and GEOSS (the GEO “System of Systems” aimed to rendering the open access data in EO available to the scientific community) through the Virtual Laboratory Platform, presented by Stefano Nativi and Paolo Mazzetti, researchers at CNR and Leaders of the ECOPOTENTIAL Work Package #10. Other ECOPOTENTIAL scientists that presented their work were: Palma Blonda (CNR), Ivette Serral Montoro and Joan Maso (CREAF). ECOPOTENTIAL has been presented at the EU stand (Videos, Poster and Leaflets).

Among the GEO Community Activities, three of them deserve a particular interest for the ECOPOTENTIAL community: the GEO-GNOME, GEO-ECO and EO4EA initiatives. GEO GNOME (Group on Earth Observations Initiative “Global Network for Observations and Information in Mountain Environments”), will address the paucity of observations and information on mountains. In GEO-GNOME, ECOPOTENTIAL is expected to contribute significantly to compiling data that quantify ecosystem services, socio-economic measures and drivers arising from or impinging upon mountains with its planned mountain-related activities. It is coordinated by Elisa Palazzi, researcher at CNR-ISAC, Italy and partner of ECOPOTENTIAL.

The GEO GLOBAL ECOSYSTEM INITIATIVE (GEO ECO) activities are devoted to obtaining the integration of remote sensing and in-situ data, collectively called Earth Observations, and make best use of them to support the management and conservation of natural ecosystems. Thank to Ecopotential activities, GEO ECO will develop strict links with the stakeholder, PA management and policy-making communities by activating a permanent stakeholder consultancy group and involving PA managers, stakeholders, nature conservation associations, economic sectors and concerned citizen groups into the definition and discussion of the crucial social and economic needs of the local populations. EO4EA (EO observations for EcosystemAccounting) was discussed by John Matuszak, U.S. Department of State Bureau of Oceans in the Panel “Advancing the Vision of GEO – User and policy-driven initiatives”.

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