The OGC invites comment on GeoSciML 4.0 Standards Working Group charter


Monday, 4 March 2013 UTC

4 March 2013. The Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC®) announced the formation of a new OGC Technical Committee Standards Working Group (SWG). The purpose of this SWG is to progress the GeoSciML data model and application schema for geoscience information interchange to the state of an adopted OGC standard. The OGC members convening this group invite the public to comment on the GeoSciML 4.0 SWG charter ( and will consider comments received before 8 April 2013.

 The SWG will consist of interested parties from geological surveys, academic institutions, and commercial and government organizations that utilize geoscience information.

Beginning in 2003, GeoSciML development began under the auspices of the Interoperability Working Group of the Commission for the Management and Application of Geoscience Information, a commission of the International Union of Geological Sciences.

To improve the ability to query and exchange digital geoscientific information between data providers and users, GeoSciML defines, not a database structure, but rather a format for geoscience data interchange. Organizations can provide a GeoSciML interface to their existing data base systems, with no restructuring of internal databases. The originators of GeoSciML first developed a common conceptual data model, to which data held in existing databases can be mapped. GeoSciML identifies the objects being described (e.g. ‘geological faults’), their properties (e.g. ‘displacement’) and the relations between objects (e.g. ‘faults are a type of Geologic Structure’) in a model that was developed using Universal Modeling Language (UML), an ISO standard. From this model, the GeoSciML data encoding was developed based on the OGC Geography Markup Language (GML – ISO DIS 19136) Encoding Standard for representation of features and geometry, and also the OGC Observations and Measurements Encoding Standard for observational data.

At present the scope is limited to the types of information generally shown on geological maps, along with boreholes and field observations.

Future enhancements to the GeoSciML 4.0 Encoding standard will allow OWS to support provisioning of GeoSciML 4.0s throughout an enterprise or information community.

The conveners of the GeoSciML SWG are Oliver Raymond of Geoscience Australia and Stephen Richard of the Arizona Geological Survey. 

The following people support this proposal and are committed to the Charter and projected meeting schedule. Others may join this list before the SWG is officially chartered, these members are known as SWG Founding or Charter members:



Stephen M Richard

Arizona Geological Survey

Oliver Raymond

Geoscience Australia

Jean Jacques Serrano


Tim Duffy


John Laxton


Mark Rattenbury

GNS New Zealand

Eric Boisvert


Guillaume Duclaux


Jouni Vuollo


Dale Percival

Geoscience Australia

Francois Robida


Carlos Cipilloni

Italian Geological Survey

Bruce Simmons



The OGC is an international consortium of more than 485 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 useful with any application that needs to be geospatially enabled. Visit the OGC website at