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CEOS & GEOGLAM: Working with the world's space agencies to advance agricultural monitoring

GEOGLAM-CEOS Workshop on Data and Systems Requirements for Operational Agricultural Monitoring, hosted at the Joint Research Centre of the European Commission in Ispra, Italy
What We Do

GEOGLAM’s overarching goal is to enhance the international community’s capacity to utilize Earth observations to produce and distribute timely, accurate, reliable, and actionable information on food production for both stabilizing markets and providing early warnings of food shortages. At the core of GEOGLAM’s activities is the coordination of Earth observation (EO) data (acquisition, preprocessing, and access)  including satellite-based data drawn from both the commercial and civil space agencies. In the latter case, this is accomplished through a strong relationship with the Committee on Earth Observation Satellites (CEOS), an organization of the world’s space agencies in operation since 1984. Dr. Alyssa Whitcraft serves as both the lead of the GEOGLAM Thematic Coordination Team on EO Data, as well as the agricultural lead point of contact for CEOS. Since 2018, the focus of the group has expanded from data requirements to defining Essential Agricultural Variables for GEOGLAM, an effort co-led by Dr. Whitcraft and Sven Gilliams (VITO).



How Satellites Make This Work

This effort includes:

  • Collecting community-defined EO requirements and sharing with CEOS to guide acquisition strategies and future mission planning. The most recent requirements are available on CEOS’ website.
CEOS project
GEOGLAM Earth Observation Data Requirements, v. 2019 (Whitcraft et al. 2019)
  • Requesting that space agencies acquire specific data and make it available to users, such as for the JECAM research site network.
  • Working with CEOS teams to develop data preprocessing standards (e.g. CEOS Analysis Ready Data for Land (CARD4L)), and means for utilizing data (e.g. CEOS Open Data Cube).
  • Developing Essential Agricultural Variables for GEOGLAM.
Alyssa Whitcraft, University of Maryland
Team Members
Inbal Becker-Reshef, University of Maryland
Christopher Justice, University of Maryland
Eric Vermote, NASA, UMD