Do you know the impact of your geospatial services?

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The need to understand the the impact of geospatial information and geospatial services is now stronger than ever. New spatial data is captured all the time and services are published every day and the development of Spatial Data Infrastructures has promoted the growth of public sector spatial web services. At the moment Spatineo monitors globally 55 320 spatial web services that offer over 1 178 900 data layers. The impact of these services must be huge.

All professionals working with geospatial information and technologies know that the use of geospatial solutions can make operations more efficient and support better decisions in all industries as well as enable better quality of life for citizens. However, it is not generally easy to assess the direct impact of geospatial information or services because they are usually embedded to a more comprehensive solution or application.

AlphaBeta published in September a very interesting study about The Economic Impact of Geospatial Services. The study covers six regions and 22 countries and shows the benefits of geospatial information to consumers, businesses and societies. The strength of this study is its global coverage, quantifiable impacts and transparent method that can be applied at national level as well. The main finding of the study is that geospatial information is having a significant role in changing our lives for the better. Digital maps and navigation help consumers speed up shopping, save fuel and make travel more efficient. The economic value of these is over US$550 billion yearly. Generally, a more efficient transportation can reduce global CO2 emissions by 5% per year and help us to achieve the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 13 “Take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts”. According to AlphaBeta governments have an important role in promoting and implementing emerging applications of geospatial data and technologies, and “policies should support collection, sharing and use of geospatial data and services in order to help ensure data availability, accessibility and quality”.

I made an exercise how to apply the methodology and unit values of the study to Finland. In the year 2016 the amount of employed people (between ages 15 and 74) was 2 448 000. 72% of all travelled kilometers was done by car, 4% by bicycle or foot and approximately 24% by public transport.  In 2016 the number of registered vehicles in active use in the country was 2 652 765.  Owners of registered vehicles can save up to 9€ ($10) on fuel per year when using their cars  which means total saving of  about 24 million euros per year. Digital maps and route planner apps allow an average commuter save 6 hours of travel time on busses and trains and 13 hours of travel time by car annually. Based on this, for example, all employed people in Finland would save totally about 977 million euros annually. The economic impact in Finland may presumably be bigger than my results show. For more precise impacts more detailed statistics are needed. But this is certainly a good start to analyse the impacts at national level. You can try to apply this method to your own country!

 ¹http://www.stat.fi/til/tyti/2016/13/tyti_2016_13_2017-04-12_kat_002_en.html
 ²https://fi.wikipedia.org/wiki/Liikenne_Suomessa
 ³Overall average wage in Finland is 3368€/month, https://yle.fi/uutiset/3-984329

What are Spatineo Quality Awards?

In SDI community, we have a lot of organisations who are doing a great job and have poured tremendous amounts of effort into making their SDI as good as possible. We thought that recognizing this success would be a great way to celebrate those who deserve it.

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Where the idea came from?

Quality awards started out as an thought from Fabio Bittencourt. He shed some light into where the whole idea started:

“I always thought we should find new ways to use the huge amount of information we gathered everyday (over 15 million requests are sent daily to spatial web services out there and respective availability and response times are recorded by Spatineo) and turn into something we could use to recognize those who outstand in performance according to our measurements.

As we started to collect all these data 5 years ago, both the algorithm and the services we have discovered can produce a consistent basis to turn the availability information we have recorded in our database into a criteria for something useful, interesting and valuable to the GIS community. This is how the Spatineo Quality Award was born.

Once we defined the goal of the Award, which was to recognize organisations for their level of service quality according to the measurements recorded in our database, we could then choose: 1) where to apply that (for INSPIRE Services, to OGC compliant services, for spatial web services from a particular country, etc.) and 2) what methodology to use in order to keep consistency with current spatial data standards and data validation techniques.”

Recognizing success

Measuring your status is immensely important in order to progress towards your goals. Setting the bar high can be sometimes hard, but the feeling when you finally reach that goal you have been working towards for a long time is really rewarding. We think that those who have made that journey and reached their goals and acquired great level of succession should be held as an example to other.

What could be a better way to recognizing success than highlighting and rewarding? That is exactly what Spatineo Quality Awards are about. Showing inspiring success stories might just be the tipping point for others to grasp for that success themselves. We at Spatineo aim towards helping our customers to set their goals, reach their goals, and progress even beyond their goals. Geospatial community isn’t just build from different individual pieces; we work interconnected and together. Even if just few organisations take the steps to reach higher, we all benefit from that. Learning together and helping each other with recognizing success is the way to go.

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Vodohospodárska výstavba was announced as one of the winners at Spatineo Quality Awards in INSPIRE 2017 Conference.

Next Spatineo Quality awards coming soon!

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The next Spatineo Quality Awards will be given at GIS Expo in Helsinki. This time we are finding those Finnish organisations who have succeeded with their spatial data infrastructures! We’re eager to see if there any outstanding performances or extraordinary level of excellence. Hope so.

More info coming soon about Spatineo Quality Awards at GIS Expo, stay tuned!

INSPIRE 2017 – How did it succeed?

  • Vodohospodárska_výstavba_Spatineo_Quality_Awards_INSPIRE
    Vodohospodárska výstavba was announced as one of the winners at Spatineo Quality Awards!

We attended once again to THE conference of the year, INSPIRE Conference. But what was so special about it this year? INSPIRE felt like it had one extra layer of warmth and hype around it this year. Successful conferences are hard to manage but INSPIRE was able to go beyond all expectations this year.

Insights from INSPIRE

We had a prime spot this year, as we had teamed up with few partners and new associates. This gave us front row seats to see what was going on. Jaana Mäkelä, Sampo Savolainen and Fabio Bittencourt held presentations and attended workshops, and gained insight from this year’s conference. We already wondered about this year’s topic prior to the conference, it can be read here.

“This year discussions emphasized the impact of SDIs. Are European SDIs open enough so that all potential users can benefit from them? Do SMEs understand the business possibilities that INSPIRE and SDIs provide? What kind of e-Government applications utilize SDIs and INSPIRE services?

The Delft University of Technology have made a study of the openness of SDIs of European countries. They visualized informatively on maps the values of three indicators: readiness, implementation and impact. Small and medium size Geo-ICT companies have developed great innovations based on geospatial technologies and INSPIRE services but these innovations have usually remained national because still in some EU countries access to public spatial data is limited. Also national legislation in many cases hinder the use of the most advanced solutions such as self driving cars or robotic helicopters in e-commerce deliveries. Inspiring e-Government applications related to Smart City development in the City of Hamburg and City of Kielce were presented. The case study of the Finnish City of Hyvinkää showed concrete quantitative benefits that an SDI which is reliable and has rich spatial content can bring to a digital building permission process.” – Jaana Mäkelä

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Acknowledging Success

This year we wanted to give something back to the community that has given us so much. Awarding those who have succeeded was the best way to recognize all the effort organizations have implemented into their SDIs. That is why we hosted “Spatineo Quality Awards” this year. lkka, Fabio and Sampo had gathered some of the most successful organizations and sorted out 3 categories in which prizes were given.

“We were very happy to see the positive repercussion that the presentation about “Spatineo Quality Awards for INSPIRE Services” had at the thematic session “INSPIRE thinking out of the box”. Both among national organizations in countries where some awards were given to as well as at the european level, once some members of the INSPIRE MIG-T Representatives group and the European Commission came to us for further clarifications on the basis of how we developed such consistent methodology to find the ones best in class when it comes to Quality of INSPIRE Services. Congratulations once again to the winners!” – Fabio Bittencourt

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Parting words

We would like to thank everyone in the INSPIRE Conference organizations for making this all possible, it would have not been possible without you! Also everyone who attended the conference had a key-role in making this event so successful. Our most humble salute to you all! Creating this kind of event each year really rallies the community together, enabling us to drive towards success together!

We hope to see you next year in Antwerp!