The Ocean Best Practices System-Supporting a Transparent and Accessible Ocean

pier.buttigieg [ at ]


The development and deployment of best practices are playing increasingly important roles in supporting ocean observing. By their nature, well-adopted and reviewed best practices facilitate interoperability, reproducibility and enhance the quality of data and information products. To be effective, best practices must be easy to discover, access and adopt. Unfortunately, a wealth of best practices is undigitized, buried in local repositories or scattered on the web. To reduce this fragmentation and to help meet the urgent and existential global challenges rapidly approaching (see, for example, UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development), the IOC-UNESCO Ocean Best Practices System (OBPS) has been created. The OBPS was recently described from an ocean research perspective [1]. In this paper, we describe the system's underlying technology and its core mission to enable content discovery and management through fine-scale indexing via text-mining and ontology-based semantic search tools. This relies on the reuse of well-adopted community thesauri and ontologies linking knowledge across the marine domain, through to the Sustainable Development Goals. We have implemented a constellation of software modules around the core OBPS repository (OBPS-R) to create a new, powerful, and extensible resource to accelerate best practice co-development, discovery, and access through intuitive user interfaces. While the system is operational, there are still many areas where further development can enhance the support of ocean observing. We address these in this paper and we invite the broader community to contribute to our common mission's open source codebase as well as creating and contributing ocean best practices to the OBPS.

Item Type
Conference (Conference paper)
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Primary Topic
Research Networks
Publication Status
Event Details
OCEANS 2019 MTS/IEEE SEATTLE, 27 Oct 2019 - 31 Oct 2019, Seattle, Washington, USA.
Eprint ID
DOI 10.23919/OCEANS40490.2019.8962680

Cite as
Buttigieg, P. L. , Caltagirone, S. , Simpson, P. and Pearlman, J. S. (2019): The Ocean Best Practices System-Supporting a Transparent and Accessible Ocean , OCEANS 2019 MTS/IEEE SEATTLE, Seattle, Washington, USA, 27 October 2019 - 31 October 2019 . doi: 10.23919/OCEANS40490.2019.8962680

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