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GEO related Material for GGOS

IAG is a Participating Organisation in GEO. IAG has delegated the representation of IAG as Participating Organization in GEO to GGOS. The representatives of IAG to GEO are members of the GGOS Working Group on GEO Relations. For a list of the current representatives of IAG in GEO and its committees and working groups see there. Some material related to the work of the WG members in GEO is available through the web page of this WG. Here, appropriate GEO-related material is made available publicly, and the IAG/GGOS contribution to GEO is documented at a concise level.

GEO-IV Plenary and Ministerial Summit, Cape Town, South Africa, November 28-30, 2007

At the GEO meetings in Cape Town, GGOS was represented by the GGOS chairs Markus Rothacher, Hans-Peter Plag and Ruth Neilan (see the chairs ...). In a statement delivered by the Chair of GGOS, Markus Rothacher, GGOS emphasized the importance of an operational core for the sea level, water cycle, and geohazards components of the geodetic observing system (read the statement ...). GGOS was also represented in the Exhibition of the Fourth Plenary meeting of the Group on Earth Observation (GEO) with a booth featuring among others a CHAMP model and a visualization of the changing Earth gravity field (see the booth ...).

GGOS Contribution to the Preparation of the Ministerial Summit, November 30, 2007, Cape Town, South Africa

GGOS contributed to the preparation of the Earth Observation Summit in two ways:

  • IAG was represented in Task Force 2, which had the task to prepare the Progress Report for the Summit. The representative was Hans-Peter Plag. The Progress Report is available as pdf
  • Under the lead of IAG/GGOS, the Task Team of Task AR-07-03 prepared a proposal for an Early Achievement, which was accepted and included in the Annex to the Progress Report. The Early Achievement report is available as pdf.

GEO Task Sheets

The Task sheets for the task of the 2007-2009 Work Plan are available from the GEO Ftp site at ftp://ftp.wmo.int/Projects/GEO/TaskSheets/.

Further developments of GEO Workplan 2007-2009

In the preparation of the Version 3 Work Plan, GGOS had interacted with the GEO Secretariat through both written inputs and oral communications. As a result, the Work Plan includes task AR-07-03 "Global Geodetic Reference Frames". This task provides an unique opportunity to interact with the GEO Secretariat and the GEO Plenary over the coming years, and thus to promote the work of GGOS in its importance for Earth observations and other applications. In spring 2007, negotiation between GEO Secretariat and GGOS concerning the detailed task sheet for task AR-07-03 led to a task sheet that was a combination of the original proposals for two separate Tasks (see below).


At GEO-III, which took place on November 28-29, 2006 in Bonn, Germany, IAG was represented by Markus Rothacher, Hans-Peter Plag, and Susanna Zerbini. Also present were the GGOS Steering Committee members Bente Lilja Bye (for ESEAS) and Bernd Richter (for Germany).

The GEO Work Plan for 2007 to 2009 was accepted during the Third GEO Plenary Meeting held on 28-29 November 2006 in Bonn, Germany (for a pictures of the plenary and the co-chairs, respectively, taken during the opening, see plenary and podium, respectively.). In principle, the Work Plan accepted corresponds to the Version 3 distributed prior to the Plenary, and it was emphasized that the Work Plan is a living document expected to evolve from plenary to plenary meeting.

GGOS Contribution to the preparation of the GEO Work Plan 2007-2009

The GEO Work Plan for 2007 to 2009 was prepared in several iterative steps over the period from May 2006 to November 2006. GGOS provided input to the various steps with the main goal to ensure an improved reflection of the importance of the geodetic reference frames and geodetic observations in this three years plan, compared to the 2006 Work Plan.

A draft outline of the Work Plan was sent out in May 2006, and comments were invited by May 26, 2006. Based on input from the GGOS Steering Committee, the GGOS Executive Committee prepared comments on the draft outline, and submitted this to the GEO Secretary.

IAG/GGOS also reacted on the version 1 of the Work Plan. Together with the Steering Committee, the GGOS EC developed and proposed a task on reference frames with the goal to "Ensure the availability of accurate, consistent, homogeneous, long-term stable, global geodetic reference frames as a mandatory framework and the metrological basis for Earth observation." This task was included in the next version of the Work Plan, i.e. Version 2. This Version 2 was released on August 1, 2006. Comments on this version were due by October 2, 2006. Subsequent to the publication of Version 2, the GGOS/IAG Representatives to the GEO Committees and Working Group were asked to provide further comments on the work plan. Based on the received input and also based on the discussions at the UIC meeting on September 5-7, 2006, in Ottawa, a new task was proposed, with the preliminary title "Establish links to relevant user communities in the nine societal benefit areas and identify their requirements concerning georeferencing and geodetic reference frames". This new task also required a revision of the previously proposed task.

The Version 3 of the Work Plan was made available in October 2006. Unfortunately, the new Task Proposal was not accepted by the GEO Secretariat, with the main reasoning that the GEO Executive Committee had asked the GEO Secretariat to reduce the number of tasks in the 2007-2009 Work Plan and to work towards larger, more comprehensive tasks. The GEO Secretariat therefore decided to combine the two task proposals into one reference frame-related task covering also the user requirements and user linkage.

Work Plan 2006

The GEO Work Plan for 2006 was accepted by GEO-II as a living document. It was then revised and detailed by the GEO Committees and WG in a sequence of meetings in spring 2006. IAG/GGOS GEO representatives used these meetings to input the comments of IAG/GGOS into the process. The full document can be accessed at the GEO ftp server at ftp://ftp.wmo.int/Projects/GEO/.


At the GEO-II meeting, which took place on December 14-15, 2005 in Geneva, GGOS was represented by Markus Rothacher and Hans-Peter Plag.

Last edited 06 January 2009

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© 2007, 2008, 2009, Hans-Peter Plag

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