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GoMOOS: An Institutional Structure in Support of Regional Marine Research, Operations and Applications

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The vision for a national coastal ocean observing system offers unprecedented opportunity for both research and operational oceanography. The leaders of the movement toward a national system have conceived that system as a federation of linked regional systems, but without specifying how the individual regional systems should be governed. There is an expectation that emerging governance structures shall be as diverse as the regional issues that they address, but there are, as of yet, few examples from which to learn. The Gulf of Maine Ocean Observing System (GoMOOS) offers one example. GoMOOS has a non-profit corporate structure that engages users in a partnership between research institutions and operational agencies. Initially, the structure developed to serve the interests of a broad array of users in the Gulf of Maine region, thereby satisfying the Ocean. US definition of a “coastal ocean observing system.” As GoMOOS continues to strengthen partnerships within the region, it seems also to be evolving toward a working example of the more general community notion of a “regional association.”

Document Type: Research Article


Publication date: September 1, 2003

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  • The Marine Technology Society Journal is the flagship publication of the Marine Technology Society. It publishes the highest caliber, peer-reviewed papers on subjects of interest to the society: marine technology, ocean science, marine policy and education. The Journal is dedicated to publishing timely special issues on emerging ocean community concerns while also showcasing general interest and student-authored works.
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