BOF

Public Geodata: Open Access to State-Collected Geographic Information is a Right, Not a Privilege

Track: BOF
Date: Tuesday, 19 September 2006
Time: 19:30 - 20:30
Location: Salon Astrid

Moderated by Jo Walsh

Public Geodata -- geographic information collected by the state -- is a public good. Across Europe, a proprietary data licensing policy with regards to public geodata is holding back its civic, economic, and technological potential.

There is a next generation of tools involving increasingly distributed "ground-truthing" and delegated contribution, that is being worked out in the context of open source collaborative mapping projects like http://openstreetmap.org/. Hacker-driven data exchange efforts in support of projects like WorldWind are pushing the edge of the domain.

Meanwhile, the proposed INSPIRE Directive threatens to impose copyright constraints and restrict the right of the public to view or even learn about public geodata holdings: http://petition.publicgeodata.org/.

This is a discussion forum on "what next" to try to get local and regional government more involved with open source tools, and open standards particularly, as a preface to establishing data sharing agreements, and how as developers it may be possible to participate in the public decision making process in favour of public access to geodata.