Ocean Data and Information Network for Africa (ODINAFRICA)
The Ocean Data and Information Network for Africa (ODINAFRICA) brings together marine related institutions from twenty five (25) Member States of the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission of UNESCO from Africa.The earlier phases of development of ODINAFRICA aimed at enabling member states from Africa to get access to data available in other data centres, develop skills for manipulation of data and preparation of data and information products, and develop infrastructure for archival, analysis and dissemination of the data and information products. The goal of the current phase of ODINAFRICA is to improve data flows into the national oceanographic data and information centres in the participating countries, develop data and information products required for integrated management of the coastal areas of Africa, and increase the delivery of services to end users. The network has assisted the Member States to establish and operate National Oceanographic Data and Information centres, and in particular: to get access to data available in other data centres, develop skills for manipulation of data and preparation of data and information products, and develop infrastructure for archival, analysis and dissemination of the data and information products. Each of the participating institutions has developed a suite of data and information products that have been quality controlled, merged and availed through project website (www.odinafrica.org). These include: Directories of marine and freshwater professionals, Catalogues of marine related data sets, Marine Species data bases, library catalogues, catalogue of marine related publications from/about Africa. The three thematic work packages being implemented in the current phase of ODINAFRICA are: (i) Coastal Ocean Observing System, focusing on upgrading and expanding African network of sealevel stations, provision of near real-time observations of ocean variables, and building adequate capacity for analysis and management of sea-state variables, (ii) Data and Information Management, focusing on further development and strengthening of National Oceanographic Data Centres (NODC) to manage data streams from the coastal ocean observing network, and Integrating biogeographic and hydrological data steams into NODC systems, and (iii) Product Development and end user communication and information delivery, focusing on identification of end users of marine/coastal data/information products and their requirements, identification and development of set of core products to be prepared by each NODC, development of the African Marine Atlases, improvement of atmospheric and oceanic monitoring databases, promotion and dissemination of outputs of the project, and assessment of the impacts of products on the end-user.