The easiest way to get to grips with geodata is to use tools that make it easier to manage. For specialists, such tools also act as a gateway to more meaningful dialogue with non-specialists. The key to success is wider support for key standards.

Most people recognise the potential of geospatial information. But how do you get started managing, publishing and using geospatial data effectively? The obvious solution is to add seamless geospatial support to a tool already used to manage other types of data, such as open data. This has several advantages:

  • The tool will act as a hub for spatial data management. This effectively means supporting the standards used for both geospatial and open data.
  • It will make it easier for non-specialists to work with spatial data.
  • Specialists in geospatial data, also known as GIS data, will have a common point of reference when communicating with non-specialists.

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Let us take a closer look at these three points and how they are reflected in MetaSolutions’ open data platform, EntryScape. First, a brief, more philosophical point. Spatial data in itself is valuable, regardless of whether it is open or not. Open data in itself is also valuable, regardless of whether it is geodata or not. Combining the management of geospatial and open data increases the value of both.

Standards are the foundation of everything

Standards are key to effective data sharing. This is particularly true for spatial data. Firstly, it makes it easier to describe general aspects of spatial data sets in the same way as other types of data sets. This makes it easier to publish and access data.

EntryScape supports all the necessary metadata standards: DCAT-AP-SE version 2.0 is the standard used for open data and on For geodata, there is another standard from the EU’s Inspire directive. In Swedish the standard is called NMDP 4.0, nationell metadataprofil 4.0. If this standard is used, can read the data.

Learn more about DCAT-AP!

Both DCAT-AP-SE and NMDP 4.0 are metadata specifications. In simple terms, these are standardised descriptions of what datasets contain and other information about them, such as who published them, when they were published, and so on. In short, it is information that makes publication and access easier. When dataset descriptions are standardised, they can be automatically published on many data portals and accessed using a variety of tools.

Complete metadata descriptions

In simple terms, custom metadata profiles in Entryscape ensure that the fields needed to manage, publish and access geodata are already there. This means that the user or publisher does not have to identify and implement the requirements. It is also possible to create your own metadata profiles for geodata.

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Entryscape can support customised open data and geospatial profiles with the same simple interface. Simply select the information that is relevant to you and the interface will be configured accordingly. The ability to create custom profiles is critical to simplifying the management of geospatial data, which can easily become overwhelming.

Publishing geospatial data is complicated without the right support and often remains an internal process within a particular department. However, it is simplified by built-in support for standards in one tool, both for your own workflow and for further publishing. From there, of course, the level of sophistication can be increased in both depth and breadth. The bottom line is that it is easy to get started with geospatial data and that management can be automated to the greatest extent possible. All this leads to geodata being “easy to put on portals”.

Speaking the same geodata language

Geospatial specialists are no different from any other type of specialist: they have difficulty communicating their specialism to lay people, who may have even greater difficulty communicating it to them.

By using a common tool based on common standards, both parties have a common point of reference. This allows them to move beyond the technicalities and discuss what is really interesting: creating value with geodata. Or to put it more simply, skip the technicalities and pick the low-hanging fruit.

In this way, the hidden gold of geodata is revealed to the outside world, while saving time and resources.

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