Research Infrastructures (RIs) play a key role on many of the last advances and discoveries in science, from the observation of the Higgs Boson at CERN to the exploration of the Universe by the telescopes of the European Southern Observatory in Chile. The scale of complexity, instrumentation, computing resources, technological advances, and also of the investments and the research collaborations required, do not have precedents in science. RIs in environmental field are developing fast, but the corresponding communities still need to embrace them in order to wide collaborations, since the challenges to tackle are in essence of global nature.

COOP+ (Cooperation of Research Infrastructures to address global challenges in the environmental field) is an Horizon 2020 project (CSA, Project Number 654131) whose general goal is to strengthen the links and coordination of the European RIs related to Marine Science (EMSO), Arctic and Atmospheric Research (EISCAT), Carbon Observation (ICOS) and Biodiversity (LifeWatch) with international counterparts (NEON, TERN, AMISR/SRI, CGSM, OOI, INPA/LBA, IMOS, OCN, AMERIFLUX, etc.) and to leverage international scientific cooperation and data exchange with non-EU countries.



COOP+ Workshop on marine global challenges

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This meeting has been organised as part of the COOP+ project and it will examine how environmental Global Challenges can be better understood and tackled by improving how Research Infrastructures collaborate and cooperate together and with research groups on a global scale. The main objective is to create a discussion space where scientists and RI operators can exchange ideas about the problems, challenges and possible solutions to address environmental Global Challenges. Furthermore, the workshop will serve as a starting point to outline and draft a policy-oriented document which will contain the main recommendations derived from the discussion around enabling and promoting international cooperation among Research Infrastructures. This initiative will be also a good opportunity to prepare some manuscripts that would be submitted to a monograph in a high impact journal.

Marine global challenges to be discussed

The workshop will concentrate on several marine global challenges:

  • Coral bleaching
  • Plastic debris
  • Arctic sea ice melting
  • Threats to marine biodiversity
  • Biogeochemical cycles in the Ocean.
  • Restoring and managing World’s estuaries.

Where and when?

The workshop will take place on the 7-9th of November 2017 in Santa Marta (Colombia). The organizing partner for this event will be INVEMAR, a reference centre for marine research in the Caribbean area. INVEMAR is charged with conducting basic and applied research on the natural renewable resources and the environment of coastal and oceanic ecosystems. Besides, INVEMAR is also a Research Infrastructure that manages the Marine Environment Information System.

Main expected outcomes

The main outcomes will be:

  • Article(s) addressing marine global challenges will be prepared and submitted to a special issue already approved in a high impact journal.
  • A document on the current needs and status from the point of view of Research Infrastructures on the knowledge and actions regarding identified “Marine Global Challenges”. This document will serve as input for a policy-oriented document on the outcomes of the workshop, providing a overview of the challenges and opportunities identified and suggestions of what is required going forward on a policy level.
  • Stirring collaborations among Research Infrastructures and Research Infrastructure-like institutions at the international level (e.g. pilot projects proposals).


Preliminary agenda

Day 1

  • Session 1:Welcome by local authorities, introductions and overview of the workshop targets and technicalities.
  • Session 2: Review of the Marine Global Challenges described by COOP+ project members (pico-presentations). World cafe to review gaps and main aspects of each Global Challenge.
  • Session 3: Research Infrastructures’ quick overview: capabilities and perspectives regarding the Global Challenges and Research Infrastructures cooperation.
  • Session 4: Parallel sessions to work on each Global Challenge description (review of the template, status of the writing process, challenge within the challenge). All relevant materials regarding Global Challenges descriptions will be distributed among participants prior to the workshop.

Day 2

  • Session 1: Parallel sessions to work on each Global Challenge description (continuation from previous session).
  • Session 2: Planning for pilot project: discussion on how to prepare a pilot project to implement part of the topics discussed during the challenge description.
  • Session 3: Policy-oriented document: development of table, report and recommendations to derive.
  • Session 4: Tour around INVEMAR facilities.

Day 3

  • Wrap-up session, conclusions and closing.
  • Tentative fieldtrip.


If you are interested in attending, please complete this form:

All discussions will be held in English. All relevant materials regarding Global Challenges descriptions will be distributed among participants prior to the workshop.



COOP+ in EGU2017 (Vienna, 24-28th April)

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EGU2017 is approaching and COOP+ will be very active during that week. Here you find the most relevant activities:

Monday 24th 8:45-9:00 – Talk “Cooperation of international Research Infrastructures to address environmental global challenges”, by Francisco Bonet, Project Coordinator (Room 0.96)

Wednesday 26th 8:30-10:00 – Splinter Meeting on Global Challenges (Room 0.51)

Thursday 27th 10:30-12:00 – Splinter Meeting on Promotion of Best Practices and Efficient Knowledge Transfer among Research Infrastructures (Room 0.51)

See you in Vienna!