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Northern Gulf of Mexico (NGOM) Ecosystem Change and Hazard Susceptibility

Home | Task 1: Northern Gulf of Mexico Project Leadership and Information Management | Information Management

Task 1: Information Management

Project Leader: John Brock - USGS Florida Integrated Science Center, St. Petersburg, Florida


Data and information management is a critical component of every science study, and the methods of data storage, backup, retrieval, data sharing and dissemination must be carefully considered. Defining a data management scheme is particularly important for interdisciplinary and integrated science studies, because the resident researchers need access to basic thematic data sets, and require a convenient method for sharing data amongst one another. Another important task is the providing of information on research activities to the general public, local managers, and policy-makers. The system must also evolve into a method for scientists to share their research results and data upon completion of data collection and analysis. The data management system must be sufficiently robust to provide adequate support of study goals and objectives, but should not be overly complex as to burden the scientists with unnecessary tasks nor require excessive expense and maintenance.


Broadly, data and information management in the NGOM Change and Hazard Project will split into Task-specific systems for work-in-progress data sets, and a separate “umbrella” project-wide data and information management system housed in Task 1. Each Task will develop and implement an individual information management plan that is applicable to the data and information needs of that Task’s unique working-level data handling. Within the Task-specific data and information systems, data structures, file formats, file maintenance, and data backup will be the responsibility of each researcher. Following data processing, interpretation, Tasks are expected to deliver mature, quality-controlled data and information products to the project-level data and information management system, where basic metadata records will be created.


The first evolution of the NGOM Change and Hazard Project project-wide data and information management system was realized with the creation of a Google Maps -based web portal for distribution of published lidar, bathymetry, core and imagery data. This webtool offers a familiar user interface for use in the discovery of georefrenced, project relevant data sets. The second purpose of this tool is for use in coordinating multi-agency surveying and data gathering efforts around the NGOM region in order to minimize reduncy and maximize cooperation.

Image of NGOM published data in Google Maps
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