The European Ocean Biodiversity Information System (EurOBIS) is an online marine biogeographic database compiling data on all living marine creatures. The principle aims of EurOBIS are to centralize the largely scattered biogeographic data on marine species collected by European institutions and to make these data freely available and easily accessible. All data go through a number of quality control procedures before they are made available online [see standards], assuring a minimum level of quality necessary to put the data to good use. The available data are either collected within European marine waters or by European researchers and institutes outside Europe [see scope]. The database focuses on taxonomy and occurrence records in space and time; all data can be searched and visualised through a set of online mapping tools. All data are freely available online and easily accessible, without requiring a login or password. The regional approach and thematic focus of EurOBIS – the European marine waters – gives the system a number of advantages compared to its umbrella systems OBIS and GBIF. As EurOBIS is a European system, it can apply for (co-)financing on the European level. National, regional or European funding agencies can thus help cofinance the development and maintenance of the EurOBIS data system. Due to the specific scope of EurOBIS, the Flanders Marine Institute (VLIZ) – the host institute of EurOBIS – can focus on the continuous gathering of additional data and information which cannot be captured in the data systems of e.g. OBIS and GBIF. The Flanders Marine Institute also invests in the development of relevant analysis tools and applications that can run on the EurOBIS data system.