Newsletter from the UK Environmental Observation Framework

"Working collaboratively to maximise the value of the UK's environmental observations"
Newsletter of the UK Environmental Observation Framework

In this issue: New Technologies for Environmental Monitoring Workshop I UKEOF Advice Notes I Finding Opportunities to Improve Monitoring Activities I UKEOF Catalogue UpdateCitizen Science Update I  Changes to the UKEOF Secretariat Team I UKEOF Twitter

New Technologies for Environmental Monitoring Workshop
UKEOF, together with SEPA and CAMERAS, held a workshop in Edinburgh on 24th September on New Technologies for Environmental Monitoring. 
Fifty three people from 27 organisations representing Scotland, England, Wales and Northern Ireland attended the workshop. Experts 
from public, academic and private sectors presented work on a variety of topics, broadly falling within the areas of social media and crowd sourcing; air pollution monitoring and assessment; and the challenges of new technologies.
Participants agreed that they came away with a better understanding of the mobile technologies and applications landscape, and knowing more about the opportunities that these new technologies could offer their organisations.  Information will be fed back within individual organisations and used to encourage and support colleagues to engage with the new technologies available, and by UKEOF to inform the work of its Data Advisory Group.
Presentations from the workshop are available here 

UKEOF Advice Notes
UKEOF's Data Advisory Group has published the first in a series of Advice Notes offering best practice guidance to support data and information managers to look after and value data and information.

The principles of good data and information management' provides a firm foundation to enable data and information to be shared and used effectively, and emphasises their importance as valuable assets which are crucial to support evidence-based decision-making. For a hard copy, contact  

Finding Opportunities to Improve Monitoring Activities 
UKEOF held a workshop on 9th October at the Game and Wildlife Conservation Trust Headquarters which brought together organisations carrying out environmental monitoring in the Hampshire Avon catchment.

This is part of a pilot project looking at collaborating over monitoring activities in a defined area. The work follows on from mapping carried out with Natural England in 2011, where high levels of geographic coincidences between environmental monitoring sites in England were shown. The aim of the current project is to realise the
benefits of coincident monitoring sites in a defined area .

15 organisations attended the workshop and there was plenty of opportunity to discuss where collaboration may be beneficial. Organisations identified where there may be actions to achieve collaboration, and the impact of this workshop will be monitored and a report available soon. 

UKEOF Catalogue Update
The UKEOF Catalogue upgrade is now well underway. The Secretariat are working with the major suppliers of information to the Catalogue to ensure that the content is updated over the next 6 months before the official launch in spring 2014.

The development team at the Centre for Ecology and Hydrology have also been working hard to create a draft metadata schema to ensure the Catalogue contents are INSPIRE EF compliant. The schema can also be adopted by organisations if they are looking to build internal databases to hold EF metadata.
UKEOF are happy to hear from the community about records in the Catalogue that can be updated or if there are new observation records that could be included. If you are interested in looking into the UKEOF schema you can also contact us with your questions at

Citizen Science Update
The European Citizen Science Association was launched on 6th June 2013 at the EU Green week. The association is based in London and headed up by Linda Davies (of Imperial College London). 

"ECSA will advance and promote citizen science in a Europe where citizens are valued as a key component advancing knowledge about the sustainable development of our world. Key objectives are to: support the growth of national citizen science communities across the EU, share knowledge and skills on citizen science, develop EU wide citizen science programmes, identify, develop and promote best practice and excellence in citizen science and collaborate with the growing international citizen science community." (ECSA)

Read more here

The next ECSA meeting is on the 22nd and 23rd October 2013 at the EU Liaison Office of the German Research Organisations (KoWi) in Brussels, and UKEOF will have a Citizen Science Working Group member in attendance.
In November, we will be announcing our feedback questionnaire for the UKEOF Guide to Citizen Science and associated report. We need as much input as possible from users of the guide, so look out for the questionnaire on the UKEOF website soon.

Changes to the UKEOF Secretariat Team
UKEOF are pleased to welcome Jodie Clarke to the Secretariat team.

Jodie comes to us from NERC and will be dividing her time between UKEOF and the NERC Science Directorate. Amongst other activities Jodie has taken on the Citizen Science Working Group. Within NERC, Jodie has worked on a variety of research programmes including Polar research, Ocean Acidification, Flooding, and Ecosystem Services for Poverty Alleviation. Prior to joining NERC, she completed an MSc in Environment and Development in Edinburgh.

UKEOF Twitter
UKEOF has recently joined the world of Twitter - follow us @UKEnvObs for our latest news and updates.

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