LifeWatch ERIC and EMSO ERIC sign MoU

LifeWatch ERIC & EMSO ERIC sign MoU

LifeWatch ERIC and the European Multidisciplinary Seafloor and Water-Column Observatory (EMSO ERIC) recently signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to strengthen cooperation between the two infrastructures. They have agreed to join forces in designing and implementing ambitious joint research projects and collaborative initiatives, which will result in positive outcomes for the both related research areas. The MoU was signed by Jesús Miguel Santamaría, for LifeWatch ERIC, and Juanjo Dañobeitia, for EMSO ERIC.

With the MoU, LifeWatch ERIC and EMSO ERIC commit to fostering the use of common standards and protocols, exploring opportunities to further promote common free open access data and software policy, and advancing interoperability. They will establish synergies with the European Open Science Cloud (EOSC), Copernicus and other pan European-international programmes and initiatives, and identify and implement collaborative projects of mutual interest. 

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In greater detail, the two infrastructures will collaborate on the definition, development and integration of new parameters, instruments and methods for multi-disciplinary observation, addressing either biotic or abiotic parameters. They will also initiate joint actions to promote Ocean Literacy, and launch the new Citizen Science programmes.

Moreover, LifeWatch ERIC and EMSO ERIC will work together to lobby and advise government policy makers and funding bodies on environmental Grand Challenges themes, reinforce industry liaisons, and establish a mechanism to secure their continued maintenance and improvement of cooperation to meet common goals.

LifeWatch ERIC and EMSO ERIC are already operational and working to establish within the next three months, as a first step, a Joint Monitoring Committee (JMC), which will draft an action plan identifying specific research or technology development areas for collaboration.

ABOUT LifeWatch ERIC  

LifeWatch ERIC is a European Infrastructure Consortium that provides e-Science research facilities to scientists who seek to increase our knowledge and deepen our understanding of Biodiversity organisation and Ecosystem functions and services. It is a distributed research infrastructure with central components, Common Facilities, located in three Member States, and national branches in six countries.

LifeWatch ERIC’s purpose is to tackle the constraints affecting research activities and the pressing need for increasingly diverse data sets and larger and more advanced models. Through the use of open data and open science clouds, LifeWatch ERIC makes it possible to explore new frontiers in ecological science and support society in addressing the challenges ahead. LifeWatch ERIC avails itself of High-Performance, Grid and Big Data computing systems, and develops advanced modelling tools to implement management measures aimed at preserving life on Earth.

Contact details

Sara Montinaro
+39 0832 29 48 18


The European Multidisciplinary Seafloor and water-column Observatory (EMSO) is a European Research Infrastructure Consortium (ERIC) which provides data infrastructure for continuous, high-resolution, (near-)real-time, ocean observations across a multidisciplinary range of research including biogeochemical, physics, engineering, and computer science. EMSO – a large-scale environmental European Research Infrastructure (RI) on the ESFRI Roadmap – analyses the water column from the surface down to the abyss and the sub-seafloor, and from polar to subtropical environments. It has eight deep-sea and three shallow Regional Facilities, deployed across the North Atlantic and through the Mediterranean to the Black Sea. EMSO makes fundamental contributions to our understanding of key environmental processes like climate change, marine biodiversity and natural hazards, and in the long-term vision of creating the European Ocean Observing System (EOOS) will play a key role providing on site observations for the COPERNICUS earth observation program.

Contact details

Alessandra Giuntini
+39 06 51860644


The Bulgarian National Distributed Centre is represented by the  Agricultural University-Plovdiv.

To know more about how Bulgaria contributes to LifeWatch ERIC, please visit our dedicated webpage.


The Spanish National Distributed Centre is supported by the Ministry of Science, Innovation and Universities, the Regional Government of Andalusia and the Guadalquivir River Basin Authority (Ministry for Ecological Transition-MITECO). Moreover, Spain is the hosting Member State of LifeWatch ERIC, the location of its Statutory Seat & ICT e-Infrastructure Technical Office (LifeWatch ERIC Common Facilities). 

To know more about how Spain contributes to LifeWatch ERIC, please visit our dedicated webpage.


The Slovenian National Distributed Centre is led by the Research Centre of the Slovenian Academy of Sciences and Arts (ZRC SAZU). It focuses on the development of technological solutions in the field of biodiversity and socio-ecosystem research.

To know more about how Slovenia contributes to LifeWatch ERIC, please visit our dedicated webpage.


The Portuguese National Distributed Centre is managed by PORBIOTA, the Portuguese e-Infrastructure for Information and Research on Biodiversity. Led by BIOPOLIS/CIBIO-InBIO – Research Centre in Biodiversity and Genetic Resources, PORBIOTA connects the principal Portuguese research institutions working in biodiversity.

To know more about how Portugal contributes to LifeWatch ERIC, please visit our dedicated webpage.


The Dutch National Distributed Centre is hosted by the Faculty of Science of the University of Amsterdam. Moreover, The Netherlands hosts one of the LifeWatch ERIC Common Facilities, the Virtual Laboratory and Innovation Centre.

To know more about how The Netherlands contributes to LifeWatch ERIC, please visit our dedicated webpage.


The Italian National Distributed Centre is led and managed by the Italian National Research Council (CNR) and is coordinated by a Joint Research Unit, currently comprising 35 members. Moreover, Italy hosts one of the LifeWatch ERIC Common Facilities, the Service Centre.

To know more about how Italy contributes to LifeWatch ERIC, please visit our dedicated webpage.


The Greek National Distributed Centre is funded by the Greek General Secretariat of Research and Technology and is coordinated by the Institute of Marine Biology, Biotechnology and Aquaculture of the Hellenic Centre for Marine Research, in conjunction with 47 associated partner institutions.

To know more about how Greece contributes to LifeWatch ERIC, please visit our dedicated webpage.


The Belgian National Distributed Centre makes varied and complementary in-kind contributions to LifeWatch ERIC. These are implemented in the form of long-lasting projects by various research centres and universities distributed throughout the country and supported by each respective political authority.

To know more about how Belgium contributes to LifeWatch ERIC, please visit our dedicated webpage.