What is OCIMS?

OCIMS intends to be a 'one-stop-shop' for accessing South Africa's oceans & coasts data and information

Objectives & Outcomes

The OCIMS project forms part of the Operation Phakisa Marine Protection Services and Oceans Governance workstream Initiative 6: “National Ocean and Coastal Information System and Extending Earth Observation Capability” action plan that is endorsed by Cabinet. Operation Phakisa focuses on unlocking the economic potential of South Africa’s oceans.

OCIMS, through partnerships and collaborations, will support a variety of oceans and coastal initiatives by providing information and decision support to key stakeholders for the day-to-day management of South Africa’s oceans and coasts. The project outcomes are to:

Earth Observation

Establish earth observation technology capacity for the South African Exclusive Economic Zone (EEZ) and the extended continental shelf

Functional System

Deliver an operational, user-friendly and cost-effective system for the benefit of stakeholders

Sustainable Infrastructure

Establish and implement the data and earth observation infrastructure
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Conceptual model for effective decision support

Data is provided, either physically or via pipelines, by various data custodians and/or contributors to feed the respective models of the different decision support tools (DeSTs). These models are hosted on the Marine Information Management System (MIMS), which has a dedicated high performance computing component. The derived products are then fed to the user-facing DeSTs for further interrogation by stakeholders.

OCIMS Impact Highlights

As the OCIMS project progresses, we are bearing witness to some of its contributions to various stakeholders. Some of the highlights are provided here:

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OCIMS stakeholder workshop, 2019. (Source: DFFE, 2019)

Community involvement

The OCIMS community is primarily comprised of government department, private sector companies, parastatals, NGOs and academics. 

The OCIMS supports a co-development approach. The Decision Support Tools (DeSTs) have dedicated Technical Advisory Groups (TAGs) where stakeholders have direct input into the development process, thus ensuring that each DeST is fit for purpose.

Furthermore, the DeSTs are only as good as the data provided and while we strive to utilise the best available data, we know that there are many organisations that may have alternative or additional data that could benefit the OCIMS. Similarly, while we have dedicated teams undertaking research and model development, we know there are others out there with great ideas too. We welcome any discussions that could improve our products.

Please contact us if you are interested in getting involved.

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