The International Oceanographic Data and Information Exchange (IODE) of the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) of UNESCO was established in 1961.

Its purpose is to enhance marine research, exploitation and development, by facilitating the exchange of oceanographic data and information between participating Member States, and by meeting the needs of users for data and information products.

The IODE programme coordinates a global network of more than 100 National Oceanographic Data Centres (NODCs), Associate Data Units (ADUs) and Associate Information Units (AIUs). These centres manage and make available millions of ocean observations that contribute to ocean data products and services developed and used by other IOC programmes, supporting a wide range of applications for the ocean community and society in general.


IODE was created in 1961, almost immediately after the creation of the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission in 1960.

Formally the IODE started out as a Working Group on Oceanographic Data Exchange created during the First IOC Assembly (19-27 October 1961) through Resolution I-9.


 The IODE community is composed of IODE national coordinators, data centres, and information centres, as well as experts involved in IODE activities.

It is important to note that IODE activities are designed and implemented entirely by experts from IOC Member States on a voluntary basis and as an in-kind contribution to IOC and its IODE.


IODE is not the only programme that deals with oceanographic data and information management and exchange.

Many other international organizations, scientific and research organizations or programmes and projects as well as NGOs deal with certain aspects of data or information management and exchange. It is therefore obvious that IODE has established a number of key partnerships.