The coordination of the project was undertaken by the Institute of Marine Biology of Crete and involved collaboration with 40 scientists from seven other laboratories (Netherlands Institute for Sea Research, National Centre of Marine Research in Athens, University of Genova, University of Tromso, Southampton Oceanography Centre, University of Crete and the Laboratory of Marine Microbiology in Marseille) representing six of the European Union countries. The study area was a 30 x 40 nm area in the south Cretan Sea contiguous to the northern coast of the island of Crete and cover a bathymetric depth range of 40–1570 m. Sampling was conducted at a grid of stations which were intensively sampled on eight bimonthly oceanographic cruises between May 1994 and September 1995. Two research vessels (R/V Aegaeo, Philia) were used simultaneously to cope with the intensive sampling schedule and a number of technologically advanced sampling gears (including benthic landers, time lapse cameras and a submersible) were used for the first time in the Eastern Mediterranean. CINCS has made a substantial contribution to our knowledge of how this extremely oligotrophic ecosystem functions and its underlying seasonal and interannual dynamics. It was the first time that many of the measurements made had been undertaken in the Eastern Mediterranean Sea and so the information they have provided will continue to be useful as a baseline data set for future research projects.
Scientific results were published in 16 articles of a special issue of the journal 'Progress in Oceanography' (for the introduction and source see the reference added). This data compilation and publication was performed through the EUROCEANS data rescue project in 2008.