IOC activities related to ocean data and information management and sharing are guided by the “IOC Strategic Plan for Ocean Data and Information Management”, regularly revised and updated since the first version in 2008.  Access the most recent version in: IOC Manuals and Guides No. 92 (IOC Strategic Plan for Ocean Data and Information Management (2023–2029). This document can be found on

According to this guide, IOC envisions to achieve (2023-2029):

“A comprehensive and integrated ocean data and information system, serving the broad and diverse needs of IOC Member States, for management, policy-making and scientific use”.

Contributing both to IOC mission and vision, which is :

“To bring together governments and the science community in achieving the ‘Ocean We Need for the Future We Want.”

The IOC Strategic Plan for Ocean Data and Information Management describes the implementation of functional and interoperable data and information management practices and frameworks to ensure data and information availability.

It guides IOC Programmes to effectively share and manage their data and information in a coordinated way and based on widely agreed practices so as to assist in fulfilling not only IOC’s objectives but also those of the Ocean Decade.

The expected outcome of its implementation is to achieve significant enhancement of infrastructure, common approaches in ocean data and information management that enable interoperable data sharing and stewardship, and enhanced collaboration between data providers and users.

One main goal is to co-develop a “digital ocean ecosystem” as a dynamic and continuous process, incorporating established approaches and technologies as well as embracing those that are emerging. In the context of IOC it will provide a comprehensive and global “e-environment where users can discover data, data products, data services, information, information products and services provided by Member States, projects and other partners associated with IOC.”

In close cooperation with the UN Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development, 2021-2030, IOC aims to  represent the socio-ecological dimensions of the ocean through digital means. The “digital ocean ecosystem” will enable the understanding of the ocean from a socio-ecological perspective using historical, contemporary (including real-time) and modelled data to describe past and current ocean conditions while supporting forecasts and prediction of their future states. Along the way, this digitalization will also contribute to the identification of knowledge gaps, helping to prioritize and improve the use of existing data or the generation of new data, information and knowledge.