OGC and EuroGeographics cooperate to advance European Spatial Data Infrastructure

Steven Ramage
Executive Director, Marketing and Communications
Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC)
Phone: +47 9862 6865
Wednesday, 28 September 2011 UTC

28 September 2011 - The Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC®) and EuroGeographics recently signed a memorandum of understanding (MOU) to promote interoperability through open standards to benefit the European geospatial community.  The two organizations both seek to promote compatible, standards-based Spatial Data Infrastructures (SDI) from the local to global level, and the OGC is positioned to help EuroGeographics support a broad range of European stakeholders responding to Europe's INSPIRE Directive.

Both organizations will work cooperatively on outreach and communications to raise the awareness, acceptance, and implementation of open standards and related educational programs and best practices. This will include activities such as participation in international webinars; publishing papers on implementations; documenting Return on Investment; and examination and discussion of legal and policy issues associated with the use of spatial information and associated technologies. The two organizations will also work to identify, plan and convene joint workshops, conference sessions and symposia.

In addition, EuroGeographics and the OGC will seek funding and in-kind resources to advance joint OGC testbeds, pilot projects, and interoperability experiments, with a focus on advancing the European Location Framework.

"As an international standards organization, OGC recognizes the importance of regional requirements for interoperability," said Mark Reichardt, President and CEO of the OGC. "This partnership will help OGC better understand and address the interoperability challenges facing leading mapping, land registry and cadastre organizations across Europe as they work to provide timely, accurate and useful geospatial information in support of a range of local to international challenges."

"With technology driving geographical information into the mainstream, the development of SDIs to underpin services is crucial and this partnership will play an important role in maximising the use and benefits of the authoritative, definitive and high quality data provided by our members,” commented EuroGeographics’ Secretary General and Executive Director, Dave Lovell. “It builds upon a well established and productive relationship between the two organizations, most recently seen in an interoperability experiment built on the ESDIN project’s best practice, which demonstrated that Shibboleth, which is open source software based on open standards, can be used to set up secure geospatial services that comply with the INSPIRE Directive and OGC standards."


Notes to Editors

EuroGeographics is a not-for-profit organization and  the membership association for  the European national mapping, land registry and cadastral agencies. It currently brings together 56 members from 44 countries. EuroGeographics‘ members are developing an infrastructure to integrate their national data – including topographic and land information – to deliver the definitive pan-European location framework for a wide range of uses. By sharing best practice and creating standard data specifications and policies, EuroGeographics aims to ensure that members’ individual geographical databases are compatible and can interact with one another. This will provide Europe with the high quality geographical information it needs to develop policies and legislation for the environment, business competitiveness, public services, legal systems, security and more. Visit EuroGeographics‘ website at: http://www.eurogeographics.org and read more about the Shibboleth interoperability experiment here: http://shibboleth.internet2.edu/why-shibboleth.html

The OGC is an international consortium of more than 415 companies, government agencies, research organizations, and universities participating in a consensus process to develop publicly available geospatial standards. OGC Standards support interoperable solutions that "geo-enable" the Web, wireless and location-based services, and mainstream IT. OGC Standards empower technology developers to make geospatial information and services accessible and useful with any application that needs to be geospatially enabled. Visit the OGC website at http://www.opengeospatial.org/contact.