EuroMarine seeks to integrate three major European marine FP6 networks of excellence (EUR-OCEANS, MarBEF and Marine Genomics Europe) - all developed in 2004 till 2009 - into one organization, “The EuroMarine Consortium” .
Naturally, the three FP6 network communities were not completely unconnected and some approaches or topics were overlapping. For instance under the framework of Marine Genomics Europe (MGE), the environmental genomics programme included projects aimed at investigating marine diversity such as metagenomic projects, in EUR-OCEANS, efforts were made to better model the functional marine diversity of low trophic levels in global ocean modelling and in MarBEF, genomic tools were applied for investigating the genetic structure of populations of marine taxa.
Nevertheless, the scientific connections between the 3 networks were still weak at that time, first because each community was too busy in driving its own integration programme and second because the integration "spirit" was only just developing in FP6. Six years later - in 2011 -, the situation is not the same and we are now able to propose a common scientific concept for integrating the 3 communities that is: "From Genes to Ecosystems and beyond".
Thanks to the achievements of the 3 Networks of Excellences, the European community of marine scientists is now ready to generate a new "systems marine sciences" concept that will combine multidisciplinary approaches in order to cover a broad area, from genes to ecosystems in the marine environments. What is meant by "systems marine sciences" is the merging of the knowledge base of ecology with those of organismal biology, evolutionary and comparative biology, climatology and oceanography and environmental engineering through the unifying languages of mathematics, modelling and computational sciences.