Frequently Asked Questions about the GEO–Google Earth Engine Programme

Blog / January 24, 2020

Do you have a project using Earth observation data to address social or environmental challenges? Are you interested in applying for the Group on Earth Observations – Google Earth Engine Programme? Do you have questions about the process or how to apply?

Here are answers to some of your frequently asked questions:

What is the GEO-GEE Programme? 

The Group on Earth Observations (GEO) has partnered with Google to offer 25 licenses for the sustained use of Google Earth Engine (GEE) for projects using Earth observation data to address global challenges related to climate change, sustainable development, disaster risk reduction and others.

These licenses, valued up to US$3 million, aim to empower public sector and commercial recipients to tackle significant societal challenges and improve understanding of our planet.

What are the benefits of this programme, how does this differ from engaging directly with Google and using GEE?

This offer is for a commercial-grade license to use GEE free, for 2 years, and extends to proposals coming from the private sector. For non-profit educational and research institutions, this type of arrangement is already free.

However, this offer goes beyond the typical research arrangement in that it includes the sustained use of GEE in a production environment. In other words, the workflow may be used in a regular, operational manner during the 2-year period to inform decisions that the organization or its customers are taking, rather than in a one-off, research or evaluative manner. Thus an extended flexibility in terms of what may be done operationally with GEE is possible with this programme.

Further, as noted in the application form, EO Data Science will provide technical support and mentoring through an outreach programme to help approved proposals from the GEO community get the results needed from GEE, adding valuable knowledge and know-how to the programme.

Who can apply?

Both non-profit and for-profit organizations, government agencies and research institutions associated with GEO are eligible to apply to use GEE for projects approved under this Programme, at no charge, for a 2-year period.

Do I need to be a GEO member to apply?

GEO is an intergovernmental partnership comprised of Member Governments. One does not personally need to be a member of GEO to apply, but your country must be a member. For a full list of GEO Member countries, click here.

How are projects selected? How will I be notified if my proposal is accepted?

Project leads will be notified via email after all applications have been reviewed and evaluated by the GEO Secretariat Director, the GEO Senior Scientist, three members of the GEO Programme Board, Google and EO Data Science.

What is the eligibility of academic researchers to apply for GEO-GEE programme?

Academic researchers and Universities from any GEO Member country may submit a proposal. For a full list of GEO Member countries, click here.

What is the deadline? 

Please submit your proposal via this Application Form to dcripe@geosec.org by April 15, 2020.



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