NODES will mobilize the tools of citizen and data science combined with Earth observations to monitor, analyze, and foster progress towards the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs).

To realize this vision, NODES will exploit novel data ecosystems in which several actors interact via infrastructure, analytics, and applications to produce, analyze, exchange, and consume data.

Three main cross-fertilizing pillars characterize the research focus of NODES: 

  • Advancing the field of citizen science: NODES will remain at the forefront of citizen science from conceptual advancements to innovations in citizen science practice, including the development of new means to acquire, analyze, and openly share citizen science data, as well as how citizen science can contribute to the SDGs and sustainability.
  • Enriching Earth observation: NODES will utilize new types of Earth observation technology (e.g., high-resolution imagery, drones, and the Internet of things (IoT)) and develop applications that focus on the interplay between Earth observation and citizen science using Geo-Wiki tools, various forms of remote sensing, and on-site observation.
  • Exploiting the digital revolution: NODES will harness the opportunities arising from the digital revolution by exploiting advancements in computing capabilities, data science (e.g., machine and deep learning), environmental informatics, and the geospatial sciences, among others, to enhance integrated systems science research and generate new and innovative data sets for further insights.

Models, tools, datasets

Overhead aerial view of city streets

Earth Observation & Citizen Science (Geo-Wiki)

Aerial of crops

Picture Pile



Urban ReLeaf - Citizen-powered data ecosystems for inclusive and green urban transitions

Space satellite orbiting the earth

Open-Earth-Monitor Cyberinfrastructure (OEMC)


No image available

Elena Moltchanova

Guest Senior Research Scholar (NODES)

Dahlia Domian profile picture

Dahlia Domian

Program and Project Officer/Finance Coordinator (ASA, NODES, EM)

Katya Perez Guzman profile picture

Katya Perez Guzman

Research Scholar (NODES, SI)

Ian McCallum profile picture

Ian McCallum

Research Group Leader and Senior Research Scholar (NODES)



15 February 2024

Significant greenhouse gas emissions resulting from conflict in Ukraine

An international team of scientists examined the first 18 months since the beginning of the conflict in Ukraine, exploring its consequences beyond the loss of life, with the primary focus on military emissions. Their findings underscore limitations in the current emission reporting framework of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change (UNFCCC).

15 January 2024

Satellite data for high resolution, seasonal, global-scale crop monitoring

The WorldCereal consortium recently embarked on a scientific journey to demonstrate the feasibility of global crop mapping at field scale to improve agricultural and water policies worldwide. Having made considerable achievements so far, the project is now entering a new phase.

11 January 2024

Impacts for half of all mining areas in the world are undocumented

A recent commentary published in Nature, raises concerns about the extensive, yet largely unmeasured, environmental and societal consequences of mining activities worldwide.



11 November 2023

Pursuing the urban utopia

Options Magazine, Winter 2023: As cities draw in more and more people, the challenges and opportunities posed by urbanization are ever-increasing. How can we make sure that the cities of tomorrow will serve both people and the planet?
Appel orchard with green grass

29 September 2023

Reshaping the local frontiers of farming and biodiversity

Managing land for agriculture has shaped civilization, but it has also led to biodiversity decline and other problems that today threaten the future of humanity. The EU Horizon 2020 FRAMEwork project is supporting a transition to biodiversity sensitive farming by uniting farmer clusters and citizen observatories to protect sensitive ecosystems while ensuring food security.