Making geodata interoperable and suited for curiosity driven research: GEO-INQUIRE project launched

Making geodata interoperable and suited for curiosity driven research: GEO-INQUIRE project launched.

"Getting 51 institutions from 13 countries to collaborate is worth a celebration by itself," said Susanne Buiter, GFZ Scientific Executive Director, at the beginning of her speech at the two-day kick-off meeting of the Geo-INQUIRE project. The 14.2 million euro project officially started on 1 October and is coordinated by the two GFZ scientists Fabrice Cotton and Angelo Strollo.

Geo-INQUIRE stands for Geosphere INfrastructures for QUestions into Integrated Research. The project aims to bring together an enormous set of geodata and make it interoperable, open and FAIR, among other things to gain new insights into the dynamics of the Earth and to better manage precious georesources. At the same time, meaningfully linked data enables us to better manage natural hazards as well as anthropogenic geohazards. In the past, the focus was often on single hazards, i.e. tsunami hazards, flood risks or volcanism were considered in isolation. Through the enhanced data access developed in the Geo-INQUIRE project, hazards that can exist simultaneously at one location - such as earthquakes and landslides - are to become assessable together. Because, Susanne Buiter continues: " We do not need only observations, but we need these observations to talk to each other, to be integrated. Only in that way we can really make steps forward. The focus of bringing data together in an interoperable way is very promising." The goal is to bring together the immense mix of data from different instruments and numerous stations - there are more than 15,000 seismological stations alone - and make it available to researchers around the world including also software as a service and computational facilities. New types of high-tech data, which can be acquired with fibre-optic cables, for example, also play a major role in this.

But low-tech data is also becoming increasingly interesting for science. More and more of it is being collected with smartphones. For example, during a recent earthquake on the German-French border alone, more than 1600 felt reports were collected. The challenge, says Fabrice Cotton, is to find ways to also use such observational data, which can potentially be very useful. "One of our main motivations in all this is that we believe that the integration of numerous parameters and instruments will lead to new insights and discoveries," says Fabrice Cotton. Curiosity-driven research with the spatially as well as temporally high-resolution data is therefore one important component of the project.

Another is the management of the data. We are now confronted with immensely large amounts of data in research and Earth observation. We now need to find ways to intelligently manage these hundreds of terabytes of data and how to connect them to new physics-based models. This also requires good links to high-performance computing, as well as innovative data management and visualisation techniques at the interface with high-performance computing facilities. Ultimately, all these data are resources that are of great importance for the analysis of the dynamics of the solid Earth on the one hand and the interplay of the ocean and atmosphere on the other.

Many special trainings will also take place during the project period - already planned are e.g. "Big Datathons" in Krakow and Bologna. And last but not least, the project will also undertake self-proclaimed major efforts in other respects: The project participants have explicitly resolved to act in a family-friendly way and to pay attention to equality, diversity and inclusivity. All this with the intention of being able to come up with excellent results in four years.

More information:


Group Leader
Dr. Angelo Strollo

Additional News

Portrait Lars Bernard, green background

The Board of Trustees appoints Prof. Lars Bernard to the Scientific Advisory Board of the…

Portrait photo of Harald Schuh, background: green

AGU Award for Harald Schuh

The glass building with flagging "IASS" at Helmholtzstraße 5.

An ideal addition to the Helmholtz Association

SLR Station, Laser

New DFG Research Unit “Clock Metrology: A Novel Approach to TIME in Geodesy” with GFZ…

Niels Hovius portrait

Niels Hovius appointed to the renowned "National Academy of Science and Engineering –…

[Translate to English:] GFZ-Logo

GFZ's position on the Leopoldina paper “Earth System Science”

Kimberella fossile

Feeding strategies of the oldest known animals (Ediacara)

Portraits of the five young researchers

EGU OSPP Awards 2022 to five GFZ researchers

[Translate to English:] Lila Flagge wehend über einem Dachgiebel

Interviews on the occasion of the Purple Light Up 2022

Obituary picture of Dr. Kemâl Erbas.

Obituary Dr. Kemâl Erbas

Two profile photos and in between the logo of BMWK and a symbol image for a text document.

Important signal for the expansion of deep geothermal energy

German map with quality-checked data points, shown as columns

A new heat-flow analysis shows higher values for Germany

P. Martinez-Garzon in a forest next to a giant split rock

Dr. Patricia Martinez-Garzon wins ERC Starting Grant for her project QUAKE-HUNTER

Map of Türkiye with the marked epicentre of the earthquake in the northwestern part of the country

Background on today's earthquake in northwest Türkiye

Topography map of the alps.

What is driving the Alps upwards?

Groupp picture ICDP/IODP Kolloquiums

Joint IODP/ICDP-Colloquium at GFZ

Teachers in lecture hall during lecture

"Extreme Events in the Earth System" - 20th "System Earth" Autumn School

Two young researchers stand in front of trees holding their certificates, next to them stands Ludwig Stroink, who awarded the certificates.

“GFZ Friends” honours Theresa Hennig and Lei Wang with the “Friedrich-Robert-Helmert Prize…

Satellite image of a desert area: Colorful spots show different minerals.

German environmental satellite EnMAP: start into regular operation

On the left, a measuring tower in a low overgrown tundra landscape.

More methane from Siberia in summer

[Translate to English:] Profilfoto mit schwarzem Rahmen von Henning Francke

Obituary: Henning Francke

Schema Energiebereitstellung durch Geothermie

European Geothermal Congress from 17 to 21 October 2022 in Berlin

Gruppenfoto PAM

International Conference on Polar and Alpine Microbiology

Leni Scheck Wenderoth

“AWG Professional Excellence Award” for Magdalena Scheck-Wenderoth

Ausbildung am GFZ

Berufsausbildung und duales Studium am GFZ

Dr. Ute Weckmann during the opening speech of the workshop

Dr. Ute Weckmann takes over the chairmanship of IAGA Division VI

Anke Neumann aon a boat during a research trip

Dr Anke Neumann is a Senior Humboldt Research Fellow

Earth Model

New DFG priority programme on deep Earth evolution over geologic time

Logo of the Helmholtz Innovation Labs: written words only

Successful interim evaluation of the two Helmholtz Innovation Labs at the GFZ

Schematic of plunging Earth plates under the ocean with water transport and the Al molecules involved: This is how water migrates deeper into the Earth than previously assumed.

Water is seeping deeper into Earth than expected

back to top of main content