Assessing the worldwide developments of national spatial data clearinghouses

J.W.H.C. Crompvoets, A.K. Bregt, A. Rajabifard, I. Williamson

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135 Citations (Scopus)


Many countries have spent considerable resources over the past few years debating optimal national spatial data infrastructures. One of the ( main) elements of these infrastructures is the national spatial data clearinghouse, which facilitates access to required spatial data and provides complementary services. With this in mind, in April 2000, 2001, 2002 and December 2000, 2001, 2002, a web survey was carried out to assess systematically the developments of these national clearinghouses worldwide. Regarding the development in the number of implementations, it can be considered a worldwide success. However, of concern are the declining trends in use, management and content. One of the main reasons for these negative trends could be the dissatisfaction of the spatial data community with the functional capability of current clearinghouses. The functional capabilities of clearinghouses should likely be changed from a data-oriented to a user and application-oriented focus. This is in accord with the objectives of the second generation of spatial data infrastructures. The main factors, therefore, that will have positive impacts on developments in this field are the inclusion of web services, stability of funding and creation of user-friendly interfaces.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)665-689
JournalInternational Journal of Geographical Information Science
Issue number7
Publication statusPublished - 2004


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