How we work with others

We are a partnership of organisations working together to operate a network of monitoring sites, which itself is part of a much larger 'network of monitoring networks' extending around the globe.

UK partnerships

UK Google Earth satellite imageryScientific research and data

ECN contributes data to a number of UK-wide monitoring programmes, and some ECN sites are locations for monitoring coordinated by other networks. These other networks include:

More on co-location of monitoring

Many of our partners - particularly our research partners - maintain strong connections within the wider environmental research community. This includes links to universities and other research institutes.

Our approach is to use common monitoring protocols wherever possible, to facilitate data sharing

Policy-making and management

ECN member organisations include policymakers at both national level and in the three UK countries: England, Scotland and Wales. We also have good links with the Northern Ireland administration through two Northern Irish partners. The statutory nature conservation authorities in England, Wales and Scotland are also represented, each of whom is represented in the Joint Nature Conservation Committee (JNCC). The JNCC has strong links with the Northern Ireland Environment Agency, another ECN member.

European partnerships

Europe Google Earth satellite imageThe principal European network in which ECN plays an active role, is eLTER (previously LTER-Europe), a network of mainly national-level long-term ecosystem research networks. ECN is the UK node in eLTER and members of ECN play an active role, e.g. via a series of eLTER projects. We have provided data and expertise and hosted international researchers at some ECN sites via transnational access schemes.

eLTER is the European regional network of ILTER, a global network (see below).

Some ECN sites also contribute to European networks, including INTERACT and GLORIA (Cairngorms) and ICP Forests (Alice Holt). Individual ECN partner organisations are active in a wide range of European networks and projects.

Global partnerships

The main global network in which we are actively involved is ILTER, the International Long-Term Ecological Research Network. ILTER - which has been operating for three decades - was chaired for several years by Dr Terry Parr, a former ECN coordinator at UKCEH. Several ECN partners take an active role in ILTER-led initiatives.


[Images on this page courtesy of Google. Google Earth. Images: IBCAO, Landsat / Copernicus, US Geological Survey. Data: SIO, NOAA, US Navy, NGA, GEBCO]