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Building the Digital Coast with the International Coastal Atlas Network

TitleBuilding the Digital Coast with the International Coastal Atlas Network
Publication TypeConference Proceedings
Year of Conference2009
AuthorsWright, D, Dwyer, N, Haddad, T, O’Dea, L, Hart, D, LaVoi, T, ,
Conference NameCoastal GeoTools ’09
Date Published02/03/2009
PublisherNOAA Coastal Services Center
Conference LocationMyrtle Beach, SC, USA
Keywordscoastal atlas, coastal informatics, data access, decision-making tools, information management, interoperability, metadata, regional governance, semantic interoperability, web GIS

The International Coastal Atlas Network (ICAN) is a newly-founded informal group of organizations who have been meeting over the past two years to scope and implement data interoperability approaches to coastal web atlases (CWAs). The mission/strategic aim of ICAN is to share experiences and to find common solutions to CWA development (e.g., user and developer guides, handbooks and articles on best practices, information on standards and web services, expertise and technical support directories, education, outreach, and funding opportunities, etc.), while ensuring maximum relevance and added value for the end users. This includes a long-term view toward U.S. national and global-level operational interoperability, which will evolve as the ICAN community strives to increase awareness of the opportunities that exist for increased coastal and marine data sharing among policy makers, resource managers, and other strategic users of a CWA. We see ICAN participants as playing a leadership role in forging international collaborations of value to the participating nations and optimizing regional governance in coastal zone management. A major long-term goal is to help build a functioning digital atlas of the worldwide coast based on the principle of shared distributed information. This has been initiated by a prototype interoperability tool and network for the integration of locally-maintained CWAs as a detailed and reliable source of spatial information about coastal zones throughout the world, as well as a basis for rationally-informed discussion, debate and negotiation of sustainable management policies for regional governance.