SEACRIFOG Collaborative Inventory Tool

SASSCAL is an implementing partner of the EU-funded SEACRIFOG project (, which aims at developing a roadmap towards a tailored network of research infrastructures for the long-term monitoring of climate change and related dynamics on the African continent. This network is to be tailored to the African context by ensuring that continent-specific ecosystems and anthropic developments as well as their interactions with the local and global climate system be captured with sufficient accuracy.

SASSCAL’s major contributions to the SEACRIFOG project comprise the coordination of the identification of essential variables and parameters to be captured by that network, an inventory of existing and planned research infrastructures as well as an assessment of corresponding data needs and gaps. In order to facilitate a corresponding consultative process and consolidate the expert input from relevant researchers, SASSCAL developed a web-based collaborative inventory tool. This tool allows for systematic capturing of information on variables, observation networks/infrastructures and existing data products as well as subsequent analysis, e.g. to determine the spatial coverage of existing observation networks.

The tool can be accessed at

Full access is currently restricted to registered users. Potential contributors such as researchers in environmental science and earth observation are, however, encouraged to register and add their expertise.

We consider this web-based tool a powerful approach to pool the expertise and facilitate remote collaboration by a large group of contributors. We further expect to draw valuable lessons from this collaborative process to further improve this tool and develop additional functionality. Future possibilities include expanding this approach to other applications and turning this tool into a publicly available resource, e.g. through integration with the SASSCAL Data Portal.

Impressions of the SEACRIFOG Consultative Inventory Tool (left to right, top to bottom): a listing of essential variables for investigating climate change on the African continent; available data products; a pan-African observation network; a research rating where researchers can rate the importance of variables, for observing (climate) change on the African continent