Why do I have to submit data to participate in IGMETS?
aka: "Instead of providing you with my data, can I provide my own figures and results?"
We need a copy of your data to save you time and to ensure a consistent analysis data stream.
If you contribute a 30-year time series of monthly data for ten variables to IGMETS. The IGMETS analysis software will first automatically time-synchronize and bin these data within themselves. It will then split the data into individual variables (10 pieces) and five-year contiguous mini time series segments (2008-2012 = 5 years, 2003-2012 = 10 years, 1998-2012 = 15 years, etc. ... 6 pieces total) and finally split everything by months (up to 12 pieces). At this point we turned your original data into 720 different pieces ( 720 = 10 x 6 x 12 ), and that will increase if we add variables or additional statistical parameters (e.g., mean vs. median vs. StdDev, etc.). While you may be able to successfully create these 720 pieces on your own, it is a time requirement and analysis capability that not all of our other 200+ time series providers have. (And if we make even minor changes to the analysis, it would require you to re-do your effort.)
We need your data to make a consistent set of standard figure sets for the IGMETS Report and Metabase
The final report and metabase will contain figures from hundreds of time series and thousands of variables. The IGMETS graphics and analysis system is specifically designed to work with massive amounts of data in an efficient and automated way, and it will produce a consistent set of figures all with a common layout and design. If the UNESCO printing office requires us to change a font size or figure axis, we can re-run the entire IGMETS figure set with 5 minutes of human time (and a few hours of computer time).
Your data will NOT be shared or distributed. This is a science effort, not a database effort.
IGMETS' goal is to produce a report that summarizes current trends in biogeochemical and plankton time series, and advocates for the continued support of monitoring and maintaining these programs. (We are not a database effort.) The IGMETS Data Policy explains that your data will not be shared or distributed, that they will only be handled by ONE person, and that this person and our Data Policy model have successfully and securely supported other efforts by ICES and SCOR.