KEPLER was a multi-partner initiative, built around the operational European Ice Services and Copernicus information providers, to prepare a roadmap for Copernicus to deliver an improved European capacity for monitoring and forecasting the Polar Regions.

Our motivation was to put the public and stakeholders at the centre of Copernicus. This follows the recommendations of the ‘Copernicus User Uptake’ review, and its 4 themes of:

  1. Raising awareness for the Copernicus programme,
  2. Informing and educating Copernicus users,
  3. Engaging Copernicus users in public and private sector, and
  4. Enabling access to Copernicus data and information.

These well tailored themes form the core components of KEPLER. However, as the Polar Regions are changing, so too are the challenges and opportunities. Because of these shifts we have included two additional themes that encompass the evolving needs. These are needed to provide opportunities for better understanding the environment, research opportunities, establishing new industry sectors and startups, and importantly empowering citizens:

  1. Identification of research gaps regarding integration/assimilation, and
  2. Improved sea-ice mapping and forecasting.

Through these six themes KEPLER aims to release the full potential of Polar Regions Earth Observation, including from ESA and EUMETSAT, by identifying and eliminating the barriers that impede the use of the tremendous resource that is Copernicus. Thiscombines two key elements of the call:

  • bringing together key European stakeholders and competent entities, and
  • growing the Copernicus brand and user-base through providing enhanced scientific and technical support.

Our objective with KEPLER is to provide a mechanism that enables the broad range of Polar Regions stakeholders to be equipped with the most accurate and relevant  environmental information so that they can seize the many benefits that Copernicus products generate for society and economy.

KEPLER outputs – reports, brochures, video –

  • Best practice guide for Earth Observation use by research vessels and stations Identifying
  • Research Capacity Gaps in observations in order to improve Polar Region monitoring and forecasting capabilities
  • Roadmap towards a European end-to-end operational system for monitoring and forecasting of the Polar Regions
  • KEPLER project summary/overview of key findings and recommendations.
  • The KEPLER Video – demonstrating how KEPLER’s recommendations can inform the next phase of the Copernicus programme, aiming to improve information services for users in polar regions.


Social Media:

twitter@KeplerEU facebookKeplerEU


Head and Shoulder 5

Nick Hughes  

Coordinator and

Policy Advice Task Group

Norwegian Meterological Institute

twitter @TheIceBear

Elaina 2

Elaina Ford

Project Manager and 

Communications and Dissemination Task Group

British Antarctic Survey

Penelope Wagner 2

Penelope Wagner

Data Management and

Stakeholder Engagement Task Groups

Norwegian Meterological Institute

Fabrice Messal 2Fabrice Messal

Training and Education Task Group

Mercator Ocean International