INSPIRE Knowledge Base


research institute for the green living environment
Mission and Objectives: 
Alterra is the research institute for our green living environment. We offer a combination of practical and scientific research in a multitude of disciplines related to the green world around us and the sustainable use of our living environment. Flora and fauna, soil, water, the environment, geo-information and remote sensing, landscape and spatial planning, man and society: just a few of the numerous aspects of our green environment that Alterra focuses on. Alterra is part of the Wageningen University and Research Centre concern (Wageningen UR). In research and education we closely co-operate with the school of Environmental Sciences from Wageningen University. With this partner we contribute to a high quality and sustainable green living environment. The exchange of expertise and capacity and the match between fundamental and practical research in various projects give us a scientific advantage. For the centre of Geo-information, part of Alterra, the reserach on spatial dat and SDI is an important topic. We share a common interest in spatial data quality (SDQ) and spatial data infrastructures (SDI). The following objectives are more specifically defined for this area of interest:: 1) Improving collaboration among colleagues concerned with spatial data quality (SDQ) and spatial data infrastructures (SDI) 2) Boosting knowledge and information exchange, among CGI colleagues and with others outside of the Centre Increasing the group’s knowledge and expertise in SDI and SDQ 3) Contributing to the (internal and external) research agenda on SDI and SDQ and acting as a point of contact for those seeking expertise in this field 4) The group is primarily concerned with environmental issues and rural land use. Its research interests are as follows: Methods and criteria for describing the quality of spatial datasets and geo-information processing; Propagation of uncertainty through spatial analyses; Data quality in the context of geo-information clearinghouses and a network of “geo-desks”; The importance of application context for determining SDQ or “fitness-for-use” In the Dutch Geo-Information domain Alterra has contributed to come to the Dutch Base Information model for Geo-infortion (NEN3610) as well for several domains, like Soil, Nature, Cultural Inheritance, Spatial Planning, and more.
Formal Mandate: 
Alterra's research is divided over five centres: Ecosystems, Geo-Information, Landscape, Soil Science and Water and Climate. In the five centers over four hundred researchers are employed
Spatial planning, water management and food production are just a few examples of the social issues that Wageningen UR focuses on. These issues often have a direct relation with the environment. To manage our living environment, collecting and analysing information about its condition and development is imperative. The Geo-Information specialisation supplies such information, on many aspects of the environment, both in the Netherlands and beyond. Research is carried out in projects. Alterra collect and maintains data sets for Soil, Groundwater, Geomorphology, Landcover, Historic landcover and more.
Alterra's research is divided over five centres: Ecosystems, Geo-Information, Landscape, Soil Science and Water and Climate. Collaborion with many partner al over the world is established. Important partnerships are PEER (the main research institues on the environement in the EU: Alterra Wageningen UR, Cemagref, Centre for Ecology & Hydrology, Finnish Environment Institute SYKE, Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research – UFZ, European Commission - Joint Research Centre - Institute for Environment and Sustainability, National Environmental Research Institute) and AGILE (the Association of Geographic Information Laboratories for Europein Europe)
The centre of Geo-Informtion plays an important role in integrating and connencting data, information and knowledge in the spatial domain.

Which role(s) do you foresee for the SDIC in INSPIRE development

  • submit reference material as input to the Drafting Teams
  • yes
  • allocate experts to Drafting Teams
  • yes
  • participate in the review process
  • yes
  • collect and describe user requirements related to Environmental policies
  • yes
  • contribute to awareness raising and training
  • yes
  • be kept informed
  • yes
    Geographic Domain
    all levels are represented
    Societal Sector
    (Inter)National, regional, public and private,research and education
    Specific Expertise
    Previous Experience relevant for INSPIRE development
    SDI development, and information modeling
    Environmental application domains
    all of the green living environment
    Primary Business
    Stadardization, Harmonization and Information Models