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Building the reference geodataset of Wallonia – the importance of spatial data integration across INSPIRE themes

Jean-Claude Jasselette and Nathalie Stephenne

(Submission #267)


Beside the mandatory transposition of the INSPIRE directive, Wallonia largely improved the whole organization of its public geomatics services. The INFRASIG decree installed a Geomatic Strategic Committee, adopted an operational plan and instituted the Walloon geo-referential. This presentation addresses questions related to this geo-referential: objectives, reference data, timing, users’ needs and roles of parties involved. The geo-referential is defined in INFRASIG as geodatasets used to position other data. The objectives cover other needs such as connecting attribute data to geometry; representing the territory; enabling spatial analysis in relation to regional policies ... For its design and implementation, Wallonia put in place a collaborative and user-oriented process. Walloon users expect a free and open access to reference geodatasets in a homogeneous and centralized form. This approach deviates from the INSPIRE’s design which provides themes as separate web services. However users see this mandatory to ensure data consistency. This geo-referential only integrates the existing basic data which cover consistently the entire territory, refer to a general interest and have a guaranteed updating strategy. These data are mainly those included in INSPIRE Annexes 1 and 2. The SPW's PICC (Continuous Digital Mapping Project – in french Plan informatique de Cartographie Continue) is seen as the backbone of this georeferential. The PICC production uses collaborative mechanisms, such as the Waltopo convention, which proposes a method to share topographic data, not only within the SPW and its subcontractors, but also with other partners including utilities companies. These geodata update the PICC through a iterative integration process guaranteeing its coherence. Initiated by the Geomatics Strategic Committee, the Technical Committee for the Geo-referential integrates representatives from public services and utilities companies under the coordination of the SPW Geomatics Department. The Technical Committee forms ad hoc groups to tackle temporary technical issues. External expertise from universities and research centers as well as from private companies is gained through public procurement or grants. The basic geodata are acquired and produced by the SPW or other partners belonging either to private companies or administrations at different levels in Belgium. In the geo-referential, the SPW should integrate these data and, when conflicts arise between them, send warnings feedback to producers . Wallonia follows a step-by-step collaborative approach. Currently, the Technical Committee sets up generic tools (glossary, register, quality plan, models ...), gives access to a limited version of the geo-referential including four basic datasets and, launches several pilot projects to improve other categories of data in order to integrate them later in the geo-referential.


Topic Area:  [2.5] Local – Regional cooperation
Abstract Type:  Oral Presentation

Additional Fields

Academic:   No
Data Provider:   Yes
Data User:   No
INSPIRE Implementer (IT):   No
INSPIRE newbies:   No
Policy Officers:   No
Public Administration (MS/Regional/Local):   Yes
Thematic specialists:   Yes
Other_theme:   Mapping
Comments:   Basic geodata; reference geodata

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