To meet  the challenges of open data , the French government is building, through Research Data Gouv, a sovereign solution for the dissemination of data and offers support services to researchers.
The government’s strategy is to rely on French strengths, in particular   disciplinary ” big science ” research infrastructures, supported within the framework of Equipex+, with a strong international presence (EBI, GEO, CDS-ESO, etc.). The DATA TERRA research infrastructure also participates in structuring the landscape of essential national-scale e-infrastructures intended to strengthen France in a very competitive European context (EOSC). A very extensive service offer is provided to users, including support digital infrastructure services.


During the renewal of the national roadmap for research infrastructures , the practices, tools and skills for supporting the entire data life cycle in the candidate infrastructures, of which DATA TERRA is a part, were appreciated. These infrastructures, including ours, are part of an international ecosystem and contribute to the definition and adoption of standards for the description and dissemination of data in their domain.

A major effort has been devoted over the past 10 years, particularly to the development of information systems and access to data from observation and experimentation research infrastructures in the Earth System and Environment field.

There are 22 infrastructures in the Earth system and environment sciences domain, 5 produce a volume of data of the order of Po, 10 of the order of TB and 7 of the order of GB, all estimated at approximately 9% of the total volume of data produced by all the infrastructures of the national roadmap.

The domain’s observation and experimentation data are stored and shared through DATA TERRA, which thus collects and manages 40% of the volume of data produced by the domain’s infrastructures (excluding the ECMWF international organization). In addition, there is the PNDB (biodiversity data center) and CLIMERI-France ( fsimulations for the climate).

However, 86% of the infrastructures in the field being components of European or international infrastructures, the management and opening of certain data acquired nationally, mainly by distributed devices, can be articulated in a supranational framework (13 international warehouses). All of the domain’s infrastructures provide access, through a FAIR approach to environmental data, to a community of approximately 20,000 researchers, teacher-researchers and engineers.

Beyond data management, DATA TERRA also ensures the development of services for research, support for public policies and the socio-economic sector, useful in particular for energy and ecological transitions. It works in close collaboration with the PNDB (biodiversity) and CLIMERI-France (climate), in particular through the French GAIA Data PIA3/Equipex+ project .

DATA TERRA is also built in close collaboration with the observation and experimentation infrastructures of the Atmosphere (ICOS, IAGOS, ACTRIS), Continental Surfaces (OZCAR, RZA, etc.), Ocean (Euro-Argo, EMBRC-France, ILICO) domains. , Solid Earth (RESIF-EPOS), Living Earth (network of Zones Ateliers, AnaEE Natura, Phenome-emphasis, AnaEE Ecotron, Recolnat, Rare, etc.) and transversal (SAFIRE, TGIR French Oceanographic Fleet, EMSO, I-LICO, project REGEF, …), by taking into account their needs around data.
Thus, it has been structured since 2016 to offer a single portal to the four hubs AERIS for the atmosphere, ODATIS for the ocean, FORM@TER for the solid Earth and THEIA for continental surfaces and interfaces. It also makes it possible to contribute to major European programs such as COPERNICUS and international programs such as GEOSS.


The Ministry of Research and Higher Education (MESRI) has just announced the infrastructures which constitute the first reference centers and which will cover part of the disciplinary fields, including DATA TERRA in the Earth System and Environment fields.

Data Gov research: DATA TERRA thematic reference center

The thematic reference centers have a national and disciplinary scope. They support action in the management and dissemination of data from a scientific thematic area.
Data Terra, on a national scale, supports the sharing and opening up of Earth system observation data, in particular through data hubs and a thematic open data warehouse. Its inclusion in the Data Gouv Research ecosystem aims to recognize and make visible its structuring activity of management, dissemination and access to data from observation and experimentation research infrastructures in the field of Earth System science.

Driven by scientific communities that structure their actions and systems to support the management, processing, sharing and opening up of data, the Data Gouv Research thematic reference centers aim to contribute to the definition of international standards of description of the data of their thematic area, disseminate good practices for collecting, documenting, processing, and disseminating data from their thematic area and supporting the articulation between the specialized thematic devices and Research Data Gouv as well as its inclusion more generally in the international ecosystem.

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