The Value Adding Element (VAE) was started in 2009 to further strengthen the competitive position of the European and Canadian value adding sector; both small companies and institutional suppliers of marketable EO services.

This timeline illustrates main groups of projects funded by the VAE program, placing them along two ideal programmatic axes: "develop service prospects" and "expand market access".

2009-01-01 00:00:00

New developments

20 activities were started with emphasis on exploring genuinely novel developments that bring new opportunities for existing EO services and for which there is demonstrated interest from users. A broad spectrum of EO services has been investigated.

2009-01-01 00:00:00

New markets

16 activities were started with emphasis on exploring markets where there is little use of EO-derived information today, where there is credible opportunity for existing EO-based services, and for which there is strong interest and engagement from key users in the work to be performed. All the activities have a common objective : to demonstrate and validate the benefits of EO-based information by conducting specific service trials in collaboration with a few key users from emerging market or industry sectors. In addition the consortia was defining how to expand market access in the longer term and produce promotional material to support raising awareness of EO services to new users. Most users were from private sector.

2009-01-01 00:00:00

Export markets

4 activities were started with emphasis on exploring geographic regions that represented a growth opportunity for existing European & Canadian EO-based services, and for which there was substantial prior experience of the members of the team. All the activities had common objectives : to characterise the region in terms of current supply and demand for geo-information, specify in detail the requirements of the top 20 local potential customers, validate the local demand and the potential for EO-based solutions through a series (at least 5) of service trials involving European & Canadian EO service industry, local partners and customers, specify a 5-year Development Action Plan (DAP) for expanding the demand of European EO based service capabilities beyond Europe.

2009-01-01 00:00:00

Oil & Gas

2009-01-01 00:00:00

Insurance / Reinsurance

2010-01-01 00:00:00


After three initial small-scale demonstration projects in 2008, ESA and the World Bank agreed to conduct a set of pilot projects (collectively referred to as the EOworld initiative) to demonstrate the utility of EO techniques to the World Bank Group activities. Twelve activities (contracts of 100 K€, 10 months) were started in the first quarter of 2013 covering the following domains: Disaster Risk Management Urban Development Agriculture and Forest Management Water Resources Management Coastal Zones Management Marine Environment Management Climate Change Adaptation

2011-01-01 00:00:00


After the success of the three small-scale EO pilot projects in 2009, ESA and the European Investment Bank (EIB) decided to further explore the potential of EO within the context of EIB activities by launching, in 2011, the EOeuropa initiative. Ten activities (contracts of 50-180K€, 10 months) have been started to develop the following demonstration EO services: Forest mapping Land Cover mapping Infrastructure Construction monitoring Terrain Deformation mapping Urban Change mapping Water Quality monitoring

2012-01-01 00:00:00

EU Agencies

Four activities (contracts of 250 K€, 18 months) have been started in the fourth quarter of 2011 to implement and validate upgrades to existing EO services being used in the operations of the user Agencies. The requirements are coming from the Agencies themselves. These Agencies have neither nor the mandate or budget to conduct development of EO-based services. The Agencies involved are: EEA – European Environment Agency EMSA (2 contracts) – European Maritime Safety Agency FRONTEX - European Agency for the Management of Operational Cooperation at the External Borders of the Member States of the European Union

2012-01-01 00:00:00

Law Enforcement

Six activities (contracts of 250 K€, 18 months) have been started in the fourth quarter of 2011 to explore prospects for EO services with a new user community; law enforcement. This community has numerous requirements for timely geo-spatial information that are not generally being served by EO at present. The activities exploit the NRT capabilities of European and Canadian national missions. Users include: SOS Childrens Villages Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission Geneva International Centre for Humanitarian Demining Amanta Resources Ltd (CDN) UN Department of Field Support UN Logistics Base UN MINURSO & UNOCI Field Missions FRONTEX

2013-01-01 00:00:00


After three pilot trials in 2010, five activities (contracts of 100 K€, 10 months) have been started in the first quarter of 2013 to raise awareness of European and Canadian EO missions (both ESA and National missions), and demonstrate the capabilities EO service providers within the context of UN-IFAD operations. The following demonstration EO services are being developed: Land Cover/Use monitoring Crop Health monitoring Rice Acreage and Growth monitoring Forest monitoring To further promote the start of the collaboration with UN-IFAD, ESA organized a 1-day EO awareness-raising workshop together with IFAD staff at IFAD premises in February 2013.

2014-01-01 00:00:00


Between 2008 – 2012 ESA and the World Bank have developed a partnership which successfully implemented fifteen pilot projects to demonstrate the usefulness of the EO to World Bank operations. In 2013 the Second Call for Proposals was launched and selected 18 new projects for implementation. Moreover a new set of joint activities was initiated. These include collaborations in international water basins (Zambezi River Basin, Lake Chad), assessment of urbanization trends via the Global Urban Growth Data initiative, collaboration on the Great Green Wall initiative for the Sahel and Sahara to address land degradation, and the dedicated GEF-financed project to support forest data development (Satellite Monitoring for Forest Planning and Management). ESA have also actively participated to the ESMAP’s Renewable Energy Resource Mapping knowledge exchange forum on the role of Earth Observation in renewable energy sector, and discussions of the Policy and Technical Experts Committee (PTEC) of the World Bank-hosted global partnerships like the Wealth Accounting and the Valuation of Ecosystem Partnership Services (WAVES) to develop Earth Observation technology approach to natural capital accounting To respond to the growth opportunity the partnership will scale up for the period of 2015-2018 in three initial high-priority thematic domains: Urban Development, Water Resources Management, and Agriculture and Rural Development. The aim is to provide a systematic source of environmental information to develop best practices and sustainability plans, and achieve a step increase in the utilization of state-of-the art Earth Observation capabilities across the World Bank regional teams.

2014-01-01 00:00:00


2016-05-01 00:00:00

EO Services Innovation

Ten contracts have been selected to explore various innovative aspects of EO-based information services that take advantage of recent developments in one (or more) of three broad domains : new EO missions data, new IT capabilities, new market interest.


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