The Governance Framework for IMOS is a partnership between particular institutions for the delivery of marine observing infrastructure on behalf of the Australian marine and climate community with each institution agreeing to a particular role. Nationally the program is managed and coordinated by the IMOS Office, established and operated by the University of Tasmania which has entered into the NCRIS, EIF and CRIS Funding Agreements with the Department of Education for the implementation of IMOS.
In turn, the University of Tasmania through the IMOS Office has entered into IMOS Sub-contracts with the Operators for the ownership and operation of the infrastructure (Facilities and Sub Facilities) under the terms of the Australian Government agreements. There are eleven facilities, each operating a different type of instrumentation. The facilities will deliver streams of data to support research in the Nodes.
The IMOS Office is responsible for coordination of the program, development of strategic and business plans, operation of the advisory system, communication and engagement with the marine community at-large through the nodal structure, and planning and promotion. A key strategic priority for the IMOS Office will be to sustain the program into the longer term.
The scientific rationale for IMOS was established by consortia (termed Nodes) within the marine research community. There are six nodes – a blue water climate observing node and five regional coastal nodes. The IMOS Steering Group is chaired by the IMOS Director, and is composed of Node Leaders and the eMII Director. IMOS will deliver data to support research planned by the Nodes.
An Advisory Board will provide strategic guidance to the IMOS Office, monitor the overall strategic direction, management and performance of the program in accordance with the Australian Government Agreements. Annual business operational plans and budget allocations will require concurrence of the Advisory Board.
Where appropriate, each Facility will establish a User Group drawn from the nodes to provide input from the user community to assist in the development of operational plans and protocols and the dissemination of technical expertise and capability. Facilities may cooperate to have User Groups in common. The IMOS Office will coordinate national reporting, relationships between the Operators, and operational and technical matters.
The IMOS Office operates with the advice and agreement of an Advisory Board which comprises an Independent Chair, Dr Ian Poiner, nine members, a nominee of the University of Tasmania and the IMOS Director. See TOR Advisory Board to view the Terms of Reference for the IMOS Advisory Board.