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GEO at a Glance

The Group on Earth Observations (GEO) is an intergovernmental partnership that improves the availability, access and use of Earth observations for a sustainable planet.

GEO promotes open, coordinated and sustained data sharing and infrastructure for better research, policy making, decisions and action across many disciplines. The GEO community focuses on three global priority engagement areas: the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the Paris Agreement, and the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction.

What are Earth observations?

Earth observations are data and information collected about our planet, whether atmospheric, oceanic or terrestrial. This includes space-based or remotely-sensed data, as well as ground-based or in situ data. Coordinated and open Earth observations enable decision makers around the world to better understand the issues they face, in order to shape more effective policies.

What does GEO offer?

n addition to over 70 Work Programme activities and initiatives that address global needs, coordination and knowledge gaps, the GEO community is building the Global Earth Observation System of Systems (GEOSS) and has already made more than 400 million data and information resources accessible via

What topics does GEO work on?

GEO’s priority engagement areas include the United Nations 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development, the Paris Agreement, and the Sendai Framework for Disaster Risk Reduction. GEO also works across eight societal benefit areas, where Earth observations play a key role in decision making.

 What has GEO accomplished so far?

Open data policy has gone from the exception to the global norm since the inception of GEO, and following work by organizations including the G20 and the OECD. This is reinforced as a growing number of GEO Member Countries adopt and purse broad open data sharing practices. With the corresponding increase in available open Earth observations, end-user oriented initiatives developed through the GEO Work Programme are creating real impact on a wide range of global challenges.

How can you get involved?

There are many ways that nations, organizations and individuals can contribute to the success of GEO and the development of GEOSS.

  • Become a Member Country or Participating Organization
  • Contribute data, knowledge, tools or resources for the GEO community
  • Become or provide a seconded expert to the GEO Secretariat
  • Propose a new GEO activity
  • Become a commercial sector contributor
  • Contribute financial or in-kind resources to the GEO Secretariat