Terms and Conditions

The International Soil Moisture Network (ISMN) was initiated by the Global Energy and Water Cycle Experiment (GEWEX) and the European Space Agency (ESA) to promote scientific studies on calibration and validation of satellite based and modeled soil moisture products. For a smooth and successful use of the ISMN, data users must follow and accept the Terms and Conditions below. Those Terms and Conditions stay valid until revoked or new Terms and Conditions come into force no matter who hosts the data:



  1. Registration: Users of the ISMN are required to register before being able to download data from the ISMN. The registration will provide full access to the data hosting facility. Data downloaded by the registered user can be used by the user and the associated organisation, no onward distribution is permitted. With the registration at ISMN you permit us to send you a newsletter (workshop news, funding information, network updates, news about new networks, new publications etc.) half a year at your given e-mail address.

  2. Scientific use only: Data provided through the ISMN shall be used for scientific purposes only. Commercial use is not permitted.

  3. No onward distribution: Re-export or transfer of the original data (as received from the ISMN archive) by the data users to a third party is prohibited. This is in the best interest of both the individual data providers and the potential users as unrestricted copying of the original data by multiple, independent users may lead to errors in the data. Users have to guarantee that ISMN data cannot be directly or indirectly retrieved through the created models and algorithms.

  4. Intellectual Property Rights: User acknowledges the respective data owner’s full title and ownership of the data and nothing in these terms and conditions shall be construed as granting or implying any rights to, or interest in copyrights or intellectual property rights of the respective data owners.

  5. Acknowledgement and citation: Whenever data distributed by the ISMN are being used for publication, the data's origin (i.e. the original data provider and the ISMN) must be acknowledged and referenced. A reference both to the ISMN AND to all networks providing data for the study in question shall be given. A full citation list can be found here https://ismn.earth/en/citation-lists/ (for more information on the networks please have a look here). The official references to the International Soil Moisture Network are: 

    Dorigo, W., Himmelbauer, I., Aberer, D., Schremmer, L., Petrakovic, I., Zappa, L., Preimesberger, W., Xaver, A., Annor, F., Ardö, J., Baldocchi, D., Bitelli, M., Blöschl, G., Bogena, H., Brocca, L., Calvet, J.-C., Camarero, J. J., Capello, G., Choi, M., Cosh, M. C., van de Giesen, N., Hajdu, I., Ikonen, J., Jensen, K. H., Kanniah, K. D., de Kat, I., Kirchengast, G., Kumar Rai, P., Kyrouac, J., Larson, K., Liu, S., Loew, A., Moghaddam, M., Martínez Fernández, J., Mattar Bader, C., Morbidelli, R., Musial, J. P., Osenga, E., Palecki, M. A., Pellarin, T., Petropoulos, G. P., Pfeil, I., Powers, J., Robock, A., Rüdiger, C., Rummel, U., Strobel, M., Su, Z., Sullivan, R., Tagesson, T., Varlagin, A., Vreugdenhil, M., Walker, J., Wen, J., Wenger, F., Wigneron, J. P., Woods, M., Yang, K., Zeng, Y., Zhang, X., Zreda, M., Dietrich, S., Gruber, A., van Oevelen, P., Wagner, W., Scipal, K., Drusch, M., and Sabia, R.: The International Soil Moisture Network: serving Earth system science for over a decade, Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci., 25, 5749–5804, https://doi.org/10.5194/hess-25-5749-2021, 2021.​​​​​

    Dorigo, W. A., Wagner, W., Hohensinn, R., Hahn, S., Paulik, C., Xaver, A., Gruber, A., Drusch, M., Mecklenburg, S., van Oevelen, P., Robock, A., and Jackson, T. (2011). The International Soil Moisture Network: a data hosting facility for global in situ soil moisture measurements, Hydrol. Earth Syst. Sci., 15, 1675-1698, doi:10.5194/hess-15-1675-2011. 

    Dorigo, W.A. , Xaver, A. Vreugdenhil, M. Gruber, A., Hegyiová, A. Sanchis-Dufau, A.D., Zamojski, D. , Cordes, C., Wagner, W., and Drusch, M. (2013). GlobalAutomated Quality Control of In situ Soil Moisture data from the International Soil Moisture Network. Vadose Zone Journal, 12, 3, doi:10.2136/vzj2012.0097

    References to the individual networks are provided on the “Networks“ page of the ISMN site and in the readme.txt files accompanying every data download.

  6. User feedback: For all questions and remarks concerning the data hosting facility or the data themselves, users should contact the ISMN hosting organisation. Currently this is the International Centre for Water Resources and Global Change (ICWRGC) and the Federal Institute of Hydrology (BfG), Germany. If necessary, the hosting organisation will forward the comments to the respective data providers.

  7. No warranties: The data distributed through the ISMN are provided for free and “as is“, i.e. without any warranty as to their condition or consistency or suitability for a particular purpose. Neither the ICWRGC, BfG nor ESA or the individual networks can be held responsible for any errors or inconsistencies in the data provided through the ISMN or for a timely delivery of the data sets. Moreover, they are deprived of any obligations relating to updates of the data sets or service commitments.

  8. Termination: The delivery of data may be suspended or terminated at any moment.



  1. Gathering personal data: User data is only gained through the registration form and is not shared with any parties outside the ISMN. 

  2. Usage of retained data: Personal data is only used to send out the ISMN Newsletter and to generate anonymous statistics. These are generated to report back to our funding agency (ESA) and guarantee further financial support to the ISMN.

  3. Anonymous statistics: No private information which could lead to reveal your identity is used. Only the following data is employed for statistics:

    1. Country and continent

    2. Organization type

    3. Intended use of the data

    4. Geo-Societal benefit area

Data download is tracked for assessing the number of downloads per network. This anonymous information is shared with the individual networks (data providers) on a biannual basis.

  1. Newsletter: The ISMN Newsletter is sent out two times a year with the purpose of informing you about the latest developments of the ISMN. For this purpose we use the email address you provided in the registration form. If you do not want to receive the newsletter anymore, you can unsubscribe at any time by editing your personal page or using the unsubscribe link in the ISMN Newsletter.

  2. Forum: A registered user can automatically post comments in the ISMN Forum. Your username will be displayed when you comment in the Forum. In case you decide to delete your account at the ISMN, your forum entries will remain online as anonymous posts. 

  3. Deleting your account: You can delete your account at any time by editing your personal page. All your personal information (e-mail address(es), username, first name, last name, organisation, department, address, city, postal code, website, telephone - and fax number) will be deleted, and only anonymous data (country, organisation type, research interest, area of interest, intended use of data sets, and geo-societal benefit) which cannot be used to reveal your identity will be kept.