Coastal Services Center

National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration

Technical Assistance

The NOAA Coastal Services Center’s technical assistance ranges from phone calls that answer questions about data tools to an extra pair of hands dedicated to your program.

Explore the technical assistance possibilities by contacting the Center at for details.


Remote Sensing and Geographic Information Systems
In addition to offering formal training classes, Center staff members are often available to answer questions about incorporating the Center’s data into a geographic information system (GIS) or providing information about the use of remotely sensed data.

Center Tools
The Center has developed many tools designed to help constituents turn data into helpful information. Center staff members help people learn how to use these tools. This assistance ranges from responding to e-mail inquiries to offering mini how-to classes for groups.

Conservation Technology Clinic
The Center provides a technology help clinic annually at the National Land Conservation Conference. One-on-one GIS consultations are provided to conference participants, where specific GIS questions are answered and information is shared on how GIS tools can help organizations become more effective.


Determining Data Standards and Data Sharing Methods
There are many data “standards” available. Deciding which are most appropriate for the widest possible audience can greatly extend the data’s usefulness. The Center helps organizations determine which data standards or data-sharing techniques are appropriate.

Data Assistance
Staff members are available to answer questions about the various data available from the Center’s website.

Benthic Habitat Mapping
A wide variety of technologies can be used for benthic mapping. Center staff members work with coastal managers and data providers to develop project requirements and identify mapping methods appropriate for a given project.

Social Science and Process Assistance

Needs Assessments
Fully understanding a constituent’s needs (as opposed to wants) is what a needs assessment is all about. Consulting services and on-line training are offered, and range from helping an organization determine how to hire an outside firm to partnering with an organization to undertake the actual assessment.

Survey Design
Designing a successful survey is art and science. Services provided include a publication designed to help organizations understand what they should consider before undertaking a survey and assistance with actual survey design.

Social Assessments
The Center offers assistance with demographic data and mapping, and with engaging stakeholders in a process that characterizes communities and their unique features in terms of the social, cultural, and economic makeup of an area.

Economic Impact Analysis
Economic impact analysis calculates jobs, income, and output generated by an institution, industry, or activity (such as tourism) in a specific area. This information can help coastal managers understand the effects of possible management actions. The Center provides guidance and model output-data analysis using data supplied by constituents.

Stakeholder Engagement
Even when the issue is important, it is often difficult to get the right parties involved in the decision-making process. The Center offers a publication with tips on increasing stakeholder engagement and is often called upon to help organizations design a process to increase public participation.

Facilitation and Process Design Assistance
What is the best way to get the desired outcomes from a meeting? The Center works with constituents to design the processes that help participants have meaningful discussions that result in agreed-upon results.

By developing meaningful, objective measures that link activities to outcomes, progress toward goals can be seen. The Center offers two related courses (Project and Program Design and Evaluation, and Planning for Meaningful Evaluation) and follow-up consultations to assist with the development of logic models and performance measures.  
Strategic Planning
Center staff members are often available to assist strategic planning efforts of partner organizations that have completed the on-line strategic planning course.

Fellowship Program

Coastal Management Fellowship Program
This program matches recent postgraduate degree recipients with state coastal zone programs to work on projects proposed by the states and selected by the NOAA Coastal Services Center.

Funding Opportunities

Funding Opportunities
This website provides information about grant opportunities and application instructions and information.