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Sharing data leads to quality improvement; case at water boards in NL

Roland van de Boel

(Submission #250)


Twenty-one water boards in the Netherlands have created an organization to execute ICT projects, called ‘het Waterschapshuis’ (HWH). This organization (among other things) facilitates the collaboration of the water boards on the subject of sharing operational object data with other organizations (government as well as private parties). HWH set up a mechanism to collect object-data concerning waterways, dikes, weirs and the like to share with others. This source is also used to create information to meet INSPIRE liabilities. At the moment HWH is able to present the data by the facilitiy ‘Publieke Dienstverlening op de kaart’ (PDOK, This is a mechanism to share data through webservices (WMS / WFS) and a viewer. More and more organizations are interested in (uniform) data which is available on a national scale. Therefore, water boards have decided to extend the current facility with other options like other formats and more content. The general opinion is that most information on assets that is managed by water boards should be available to for other users (if allowed from the viewpoint of privacy / safety). This increases transparency.

HWH concludes several issues in collecting and aggregating data. Think of issues like keeping to standards, availability of data, format, completeness, actuality and accuracy. The dilemma is that if you apply strictly to standards, you will reject many data; if you allow errors, the quality of data decreases. HWH will start an experiment on giving feedback on delivered datasets. The idea is that this approach will lead to faster improvement of data by the organizations that are responsible.

During the presentation we will report on findings on the ‘feedback-loop approach’ and we will discuss whether this mechanism can be implemented in more areas.


Topic Area:  [3.5] Best practices
Abstract Type:  Oral Presentation

Additional Fields

Academic:   No
Data Provider:   No
Data User:   Yes
INSPIRE Implementer (IT):   No
INSPIRE newbies:   No
Policy Officers:   Yes
Public Administration (MS/Regional/Local):   Yes
Thematic specialists:   No
Comments:   sharing data; water boards, Netherlands, standards, privacy

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