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Partners and Participating Organizations

GCW is an initiative sponsored by WMO, in which WMO and its Members and partners individually and collectively contribute to GCW’s Mission and objectives. Collaboration, cooperation and commitment are essential to successfully conduct GCW activities at the international, regional and national levels. From the very beginning of GCW, partnerships were being developed with government agencies and other institutions that measure, monitor, or archive cryosphere data and information, and with international bodies and services involved in cryospheric observations, services, or research. While there are formal GCW partners (see GCW Partnership Criteria), informal partnerships as participating organizations, agencies, institutions, programs, projects, and networks are critical to GCW's success.

Network Partners

There are many organizations that participate in GCW through its surface network. They are both partners and sponsors. Some established observing networks contribute to the GCW surface network, including the International Permafrost Association (IPA), the World Glacier Monitoring Service (WGMS, a service of the International Association of Cryospheric Sciences, IACS), and projects such as the European Space Agency (ESA) GlobPermafrost initiative. The Joint WMO/IOC Technical Commission on Oceanography and Marine Meteorology (JCOMM), particularly through its Expert Team on Sea Ice and the Data Buoy Cooperation panel (DBCP), is contributing to the development of the sea ice observing component of GCW. Additional contributions on sea ice measurements and polar ocean observing systems will come from regional organizations such as the Arctic Ocean Science Board (AOSB), EuroGOOS, and the newly established Arctic GOOS Regional Alliance, and from professional consortia like the International Ice Charting Working Group (IICWG).

Programmes such as the Global Climate, Ocean, and Terrestrial Observing Systems (GCOS, GOOS and GTOS) have contributed to the development of GCW. GTOS and GCOS, currently through the Terrestrial Observations Panel for Climate (TOPC), guide the development of global terrestrial networks for climate (GTNs) and for permafrost, glaciers, hydrology, run-off, and lakes (GTN-P, GTN-G, GTN-H, GTN-R, GTN-L). GCW works with the GCOS Secretariat, GCOS Panels and implementing bodies.

Data Partners

Data centres and providers that contribute through interoperability with the GCW Data Portal include the National Snow and Ice Data Center (NSIDC), GTN-P, CryoClim, the Arctic and Antarctic Research Institute (AARI, Russia), the National Institute of Polar Research (NIPR, Japan), the British Antarctic Survey (BAS), the Canadian Cryosphere Information Network (CCIN), the Data Publisher for Earth & Environmental Science (Pangea, Germany), the Norwegian Polar Institute (NPI), the Environment Climate Data Sweden, the World Glacier Monitoring Service (WGMS), the Global Precipitation Climatology Centre (GPCC). See the Data page for a diagram of centres with which the GCW Portal is currently interoperable.

Science Partners

Science programs that GCW engages with include the Scientific Committee for Antarctic Research (SCAR), the World Climate Research Programme (WCRP) Climate and Cryosphere (CliC) project, the International Council for Science (ICSU), the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) and International Hydrological Programme (IHP) of UNESCO, and regional bodies such as the International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD) are being engaged in the development and implementation of GCW.

Lastly, the WMO Executive Council Expert Panel on Polar and High Mountain Observations, Research, and Services (EC-PHORS) has facilitated engagement of organizations with polar interests in the development of GCW. EC-PHORS has members from the Arctic Monitoring and Assessment Programme (AMAP), the International Arctic Science Committee (IASC), and SCAR. Through the EC-PHORS Antarctic Task Team, GCW has direct linkages to the Antarctic Treaty Consultative Meeting (ATCM). WMO’s Polar Space Task Group (PSTG), which reports through EC-PHORS, provides engagement of CEOS and CGMS members and major satellite operators including Agenzia Spaziale Italiana (ASI), China Meteorological Administration (CMA), Centre National d’Etudes Spatiales (CNES), Comisión Nacional de Actividades Espaciale (CONAE), Canadian Space Agency (CSA), European Space Agency (ESA), European Organisation for the Exploitation of Meteorological Satellites (EUMETSAT), Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), and US Geological Survey (USGS).

Examples of collaborative activities with these partners and programs include:

GCW will not assume the mandate of any of its partners/collaborators and will avoid duplication of effort. Instead, GCW will enable partners/collaborators to exercise their mandate effectively. Close collaboration between research scientists and "practitioners", who are often scientists themselves but working in operational services, is one of the key aims of GCW. This can be facilitated by collaboration between GCW and its partners.