International extension of Unidata packages and services began in earnest with the UOP Director-funded, joint Unidata/COMET MeteoForum pilot project. Unidata products (especially the netCDF) and services were used internationally before MeteoForum, but there was no concerted effort expended to advertise/promote our offerings.
The MeteoForum vision was originally articulated in the 2001 Fulker/Spangler proposal submitted in application for UCAR Director's Opportunity Funding (Jack Fellows):
|MeteoForum - An International Network of Meteorological Training Centers for the 21st Century|
|"The MeteoForum pilot project will include a small group of educational institutions (some universities and some WMO RMTCs) that are motivated to enhance the contributions of modern meteorology in their regions. Participants will be expected to have relatively fast Internet access, appropriate computers, and suitable personnel. Some of these personnel will be trained to run MeteoForum software on their computers so as to to access real-time data, training materials, and other resources. Where practical, participants in the MeteoForum pilot also will contribute real-time data and educational resources to the effort. By integrating these elements, the pilot project will serve as a model on which to build a full-scale international MeteoForum. Initially, the MeteoForum pilot project will build upon capabilities now offered in the U.S. by the government-sponsored COMET and Unidata programs"|
|NB: MeteoForum funding has long been exhausted.|
The continuing international activities at the UPC are best characterized as a natural extension of our outreach activities to the higher education research and education communities.
The goals of the workshop were to:
The workshop was a combination of plenary, break-out and hands-on/demonstration sessions that focused on:
The workshop was composed of 45 representatives from 18 organizations in 6 countries in the Western Hemisphere.
The U.S. was represented at the workshop by:
The theme of the session, jointly convened by Tom Yoksas (Unidata), Glenn Rutledge (NOAA/NOMADS), Elen Cutrim (Western Michigan University), and Luis Farfan (CICESE, Baja, Mexico), was the same as the sessions in the previous Joint Assemblies:
Earth and space science Cyberinfrastructures: Data, Tools, Distribution and Forecast Systems for International Collaboration
The AGU 2009 Spring Joint Assembly will be held on 24-27 May in Toronto, Canada.
The 2010 Spring Joint Assembly will be held on 8-13 August in Iguassu Falls, Brazil.
The overall goal of the proposal is to develop, with West African partners, a prototype Earth-gauge system that integrates weather and health data and uses that integrated data in the management of disease. This prototype will be used for on-the-ground decision support in managing meningitis, as a vehicle for enhancing the capacity of West African meteorological centers, and as a way of enhancing connections between the health and weather/climate communities. This prototype will also be a pioneering node in a larger Earth-gauge system that integrates weather, environmental-conservation, health, and societal development data and analysis tools in a transparent framework that enables people everywhere to participate in a global learning community and find multiple solutions to the major climate-change adaptation challenges to be faced by humanity in the 21st century.
Sahel Conference 2007: Improving Lives by Understanding Weather (http://www.africa.ucar.edu/sahelconference.html, the website is updated as activities evolve).
Presentations on UCAR Africa Initiative activities have been made at the Fall 2007 AGU Meeting (San Francisco), the AMS 2008 Annual Meeting (New Orleans), and the AGU 2008 Spring Joint Assembly (Ft. Lauderdale).
Argentina, Barbados, Brazil, Burkina Faso, Chile, China, Cabo Verde, Costa Rica, France, Germany, Ghana, Hungary, Jamaica, Kenya, Mali, Mexico, Netherlands, Nigeria, Portugal, Russia, Senegal, South Korea, Spain, Taiwan, Thailand, United Kingdom, Venezuela.
As the UCAR-AAAS Africa Initiative evolves, it is expected that interest in Unidata product offerings will grow in Africa.
Some Brazilian participants:
Many of these institutions began participating as a result of the Unidata/CPTEC/UFRJ presence at the XIII Congresso Brasileiro de Meteorologia (CBMET, the 13th Brazilian Meteorological Congress) in September 2004. Presentations by active IDD-Brazil participants at the 2006 CBMET in Florianopolis, Brazil continue to increase interest in Latin America. Follow-on presentations made at a conference in Cabo Verda in March, 2008, Africa should further increase interest in Unidata offerings in Africa.
Since joining the IDD/IDD-Brazil in summer, 2005, the Universidad de Buenos Aires (UBA) has been actively using real-time data visualized by GEMPAK in the classroom and for research.
Further information on Unidata international activities can be found in the separate International Activities White Paper.
Background material on MeteoForum can be found in previous User and Policy Committee Meeting reports:
October 2005 User Committee Meeting MeteoForum - Yoksas.
Collaboration activities remain largely unchanged since the May 2, 2007 User's Committee Report.
by Tom Yoksas