The EAVs were first conceptualized during a GEOGLAM Executive Committee session in 2018, and first documented as a GEOGLAM priority with basic details in Whitcraft et al., (2019, Rem Sens Environment) as they related to the UN Sustainable Development Goals. Given the direct relevance of the EAVs to the GEOGLAM Earth Observations Data Coordination Component (lead: Alyssa K. Whitcraft, GEOGLAM Secretariat), a working group under that Component was formed, with co-leadership from Whitcraft an Sven Gilliams (VITO-Belgium).
In October 2019, the Catholic University of Louvain, Belgium hosted a “GEOGLAM Workshop on Essential Agriculture Variables.” During which we:
- Clearly defined the purpose, definition, and audiences of EAVs for GEOGLAM
- Identified the EAVs themselves as well as “Stewards” for each to assist in defining their specifications
- Developed a roadmap to completion and application – including processes, timelines, and plans for formalizing them for inclusion in policy frameworks
A description of these meeting outcomes is published here.
The initial timeline set forth at that meeting was disrupted due to the COVID19 pandemic. Nevertheless, we persisted, and through a series of virtual meetings across 16 time zones, this truly international work came together.
The GEOGLAM EAVs have been completed and are online as of May 2022.