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J-OBIS website launched

July 1, 2015

The J-OBIS website has just been launched in an effort to gather data on the distribution of marine life from Japanese researchers.

The Ocean Biogeographic Information System (OBIS) is a global-scale database operated under the programme "International Oceanographic Data and Information Exchange (IODE)" of the Intergovernmental Oceanographic Commission (IOC) of UNESCO. It is intended to accumulate and analyze the marine biogeographic data.

JAMSTEC has served as a regional OBIS node for Japan for years with support from the Japan Oceanographic Data Center. It has gathered data on the distribution of marine species recorded by Japanese researchers, and made them openly accessible through the Biological Information System for Marine Life (BISMaL) – a database operated by JAMSTEC, and through OBIS. In recognition of such efforts, JAMSTEC was accepted as an Associate Data Unit (ADU) of IODE on January 19, 2015, giving JAMSTEC a much more important role as the regional OBIS node for Japan.

The regional OBIS node for Japan at JAMSTEC changed its name on April 1 from the Japan Regional OBIS Node (J-RON) to the Japan Ocean Biogeographic Information System Center (J-OBIS), and its secretariat was placed under JAMSTEC's Global Oceanographic Data Center (GODAC) located in Nago, Okinawa. And today, on July 1, the J-OBIS website was launched for Japanese researchers and data providers.

J-OBIS will continue its efforts to gather the marine geographical data from biological research in Japan and make them available through BISMaL and OBIS to researchers and data collectors in the world, with the cooperation of Japanese research institutions.

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