en.econostrum

           

Antoine Lafitte : "Open source environmental data in the Mediterranean"





MedICIP aims to encourage the sharing of extensive data on the physical and human environment in the Mediterranean. Plan Bleu is launching this “portal of portals” after a year of preparation to improve information sharing on the environment and climate change in the region’s coastal areas.



Antoine Lafitte works at the Plan Bleu as a project manager about the physical and socio-economic impacts of climate change on coastal areas (photo XDR)
Antoine Lafitte works at the Plan Bleu as a project manager about the physical and socio-economic impacts of climate change on coastal areas (photo XDR)
After a year of preparation, the MedICIP project is now underway. What does this information sharing tool consist of?
 
Antoine Lafitte - With the Mediterranean Integrated Climate Information Platform (MedICIP), we have effectively created a “portal to online portals”, developed by stakeholders in 11 countries to share environmental and human data in the Mediterranean by country and topic.
This is first and foremost an open source system and everyone can access the tool, which means that the data is universally available.
 
What is its overall purpose?
 
We hope that sharing the maximum amount of data concerning climate change and human activity in the Mediterranean will influence national and regional policies to drive towards sustainable development.
 
The key idea is to allow access to what was previously unavailable. Thanks to MedICIP, organisations and researchers can now find the smallest studies carried out in regions on the other side of the Mediterranean.
 
Of course, a decision-maker in Morocco may not always be interested in a study carried out by a Bosnian researcher. However, many sustainable development policies will automatically benefit from sharing experiences across the region.
 
MedICIP should also facilitate and improve cross-border projects especially.

A “portal to online portals”, developed by stakeholders in 11 countries to share environmental and human data (photo MN)
A “portal to online portals”, developed by stakeholders in 11 countries to share environmental and human data (photo MN)
What are the basic principles governing the way MedICIP works?
 
The Mediterranean Plan Action (MAP) and Plan Bleu for the Mediterranean worked on this project throughout the whole of 2014. The technical aspects have been entrusted to GRID-Geneva (an information centre that is part of the United Nations Environment Programme – UNEP).
 
Plan Bleu and PAM spent the year organising activities and programmes for the 11 countries concerned around the edges of the Mediterranean. This project has been widely shared.
 
MedICIP now has representatives in all these countries. We have used open source technology and have also discussed the data formats with each country to make it possible for them to share data. A huge amount of work has also been done to ensure that everyone can use the formats available for Geographical Information System (GIS) software.
 
Even the most carefully designed observatories aren’t always sustainable. What is the likelihood of a long-term future for MedICIP?
 
Remember that the demand has come from stakeholders in the countries concerned. It hasn’t come from higher up. We can therefore say that MedICIP has responded to a need that has been widely expressed in the region.
 
GRID-Geneva is able to support the tool for two years. We will then have to reassess the budget but if users are on board, this won’t be an issue.
 
Ultimately, if this portal proves useful for multiple users, and the evaluations show that sharing data influences decision-makers and leads to actions, the tool’s future will be secure. It will become part of the world of governance and adapting to climate change in coastal regions. In short, the answer to this question depends on the users, and only time will tell…


Version française

Michel Neumuller, MARSEILLE


Tuesday, January 20th 2015



Article read 245 times


Articles which should interest to you
< >

Monday, January 16th 2017 - 15:17 Interreg Med banking on community action

Thursday, December 22nd 2016 - 14:30 Better protecting biodiversity in the Mediterranean Sea