In 2020, four new GEO Working Groups were established as part of the GEO Work Programme. The Working Groups link together the efforts of individual Work Programme activities, thereby increasing coordination and impact.
Members of the Working Groups were nominated by GEO Members and Participating Organizations in response to an open call in early 2020. In total, more than 300 individuals were nominated to dedicate their time and energy to these important tasks.
“The GEO Work Programme brings together a broad range of global experts for coordinated action. We are counting on the support of new members to join the Climate Change Working Group to develop strategies for sustained and effective climate action using the best available Earth observation data and knowledge. We are looking to engage experts, not only from scientific disciplines or data providers, but also those working in environmental protection, adaptation, governments, and even investors to join this newly formed working group,”
Osamu Ochiai, Associate Senior Engineer, Space Applications and Operation Center, JAXA.
Disaster Risk Reduction Working Group (DRR-WG)
The aim of Disaster Risk Reduction Working Group (DRR-WG) is to increase the use of Earth observations in support of disaster risk reduction and resilience efforts. These efforts are related to the provisions of the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction.
“Through collaboration and the sharing of available data and information, this group works to help countries better visualize and understand the disaster-related risks they are facing. We are looking for members with a passion to develop and apply Earth observations for disaster risk reduction.”
Shanna McClain, Risk Reduction and Resilience Lead, NASA.
Capacity Development Working Group (CD-WG)
The Capacity Development Working Group (CD-WG) promotes the principle of co-creation and supports capacity development activities. With a focus on end-user engagement, this group aims to strengthen the capacity of organisations and individuals to use open Earth observations data and tools.
“Capacity Development is walking the last mile when it comes to achieving real societal impact. Besides being a Community of Practice, the Working Group supports GEO’s capacity development interventions by sharing fit-for-purpose tools, materials, and innovative approaches during the full project cycle. The CD WG encourages a wide participation of members, including engagement with the Regional GEOs.”
Joost Teuben, GEO Secretariat Capacity Development Coordinator.
Data Working Group
The Data Working Group (Data-WG) is working with the GEO community and with external stakeholders to address data policy, data ethics and data governance issues related to the collection and use of Earth observations. This group will help GEO advance open data sharing, broadening the global use of Earth observations.
“The integration of open Earth observation data requires a globally coordinated approach to ensure user needs are met. Robust open data policies are key. These policies can ensure that trusted and reliable data is delivered to inform policy decisions. The GEO Data Working Group is bringing the open data community together to advance key issues related to data ethics, governance, and policy."
Bob Chen, Director CIESIN and Co-lead of GEO Human Planet Initiative.