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Support regional EO Working Groups in Belgium

Point of contact
Eric Hallot
Institut Scientifique de Service Public
Chera 200
4000 LIEGE
Phone: +32-4-2298316


The GTEO (Groupe de Travail en Observation de la Terre) initiative has a long history. This working group was initiated a few years ago by Skywin, the Walloon aerospace cluster, and gathered stakeholders from private companies to promote the use of EO data within their activities. In November 2015, the ISSAT meeting, the satellite data in Wallonia 4.0, introduced ISSeP in the organization of the GTEO. The GTEO has opened up to a wider audience by inviting regional and national public authorities, as well as by inviting foreign experts to present their best use cases of EO data. Since 2015, 9 GTEO have been organized, i.e., Census of needs, Land Use/Land Cover, Thermography, European EO initiatives, Forest, Agriculture, Pléiades data and the Collaborative Ground Segment. This wide range of themes shows the various interests expressed within the GTEO, with an increasing number of participating institutions.

This action aims at perpetuating and further developing the GTEO in the following years which could become the privileged interface for stakeholders from all horizons to discuss the Walloon EO strategies. After three successful years of existence, the GTEO organizing staff is currently discussing the writing of a White Paper on EO data in Wallonia. This white paper will be addressed to the relevant ministers and details the initiative, the EO stakeholders, their opportunities, needs and challenges in using EO data, and namely COPERNICUS.

The mains objectives of the GT-COWAL are

  • To facilitate the use of remote sensing within the administrations represented;
  • To coordinate internally remote sensing initiatives;
  • To coordinate and represent the administrations externally;
  • To value the Walloon’s administrations realisations in the matter of remote sensing;
  • To raise the awareness of the interest of remote sensing applications for the decision-makers;
  • To contribute to the redaction of a “remote sensing” component in the geomatics strategic plan for Wallonia.

Under FPA, we intend to increase the number of GTEO and GT-COWAL events (4-6 events a year), welcome international experts that could share their best-practices of remote sensing and COPERNICUS in operational services and improve the quality of the infrastructure (room, service, invitation, reporting). The funding would also allow the publication of the White Paper.

The GTEO is organised twice a year in collaboration with the aerospace cluster 'Skywin Wallonia'. It’s a group of companies, training centres and research units engaged in public and private partnership and building synergies around common and innovative projects. Skywin's objective is the creation of jobs in Walloon Aerospace companies. Skywin is currently one of the three members of the Wallon Copernicus Relays (with Spacebel, a private company, and ISSeP). Usually, the general organisation of GTEO (logistics and secretariat) is supported by ISSeP in collaboration with the specific General Direction within the Walloon Administration in function of the specific theme(s).

Output and results

  • 4-6 meetings per year
  • Minutes of the meetings
  • 1 or more collaborative publication (White Paper) on the EO research and use in Wallonia