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SDI Initiatives: The Asian Brew

Rituparna Sengupta
Rituparna Sengupta
Assistant Editor,
GIS Development
[email protected]

The last decade witnessed the emergence of spatial data infrastructures in many areas both at the national and regional level. There was a growing need for seamless consistent spatial data within and beyond national boundaries to support decision-making at both levels. Undoubtedly infrastructures are catalysts in facilitating the acceleration of growth in any country.

Strong infrastructure services enable countries to participate in and benefit from global developments. The origins of the development of the regional initiatives can be traced back to the creation of local SDI coordination groups such as the Permanent Committee for GIS Infrastructure for Asia and the Pacific (PCGIAP), formed in 1995 under the auspices of the United Nations Regional Cartographic Conference for Asia and the Pacific (UNRCC-AP). Such initiatives have been steadily creating several valuable SDIs throughout the Asian region. Here we present synopsis of some articles that appeared over the last few years highlighting the initiatives made in this direction in different regions and countries in Asia.


Reflections on the Indian National Spatial Data Infrastructure
Ian Masser
GIS Development, 2001

The proposed NSDI for India needs to emphasize on the nature of machinery for coordination, metadata services, capacity building and data integration. The Indian National Geospatial Data Infrastructure was launched at a workshop held in New Delhi on Feb 5th and 6th 2001. The workshop was organised by the Centre for Spatial Database Management and Solutions (CSDMS) and took place under the sponsorship of the Department of Science and Technology and the Department of Space.


Towards a national spatial data infrastructure
Dr. Ranjith Premalal De Silva
The Island, 2005

Information is considered as currency for the future in the today’s modern digital information era. However, collection of data and information over a lengthy temporal dimension is particularly difficult. This is further aggravated when the involved data are spatially distributed and dynamic. Spatial data is the key to planning and sustainable management & development of our natural resources at national, regional and local levels. There are several spatial data gaps indicate the urgent need for a National Spatial Data Infrastructure (NSDI) for Sri Lanka.

Towards a Geographic Information Infrastructure for Sri Lanka
Peter Bitter
Sarath Jayatilaka, ACRS 1996

Many GIS installations in developing countries are realised within the framework of development cooperation. As a counter position to this, the concept of a national geographic information infrastructure (GIIS) is discussed in this paper, and it will be pointed out why it is important that future GIS projects can operate within the environment of such an infrastructure.



On developing spatial data infrastructure of China
Deren Li, Huayi Wu
GIS Development, 2004

This paper discusses in detail the requirement of GIS software system for the construction of SDIs of China. Despite the nature of globalization of the information revolution, most policies for information and telecommunications infrastructure are developed and work at the national level. These national policies reflect regional economic, social, historical, and political circumstances.


SDI in Singapore
Singapore Land Authority
GIS Development 2003

Singapore Land Authority manages the SDI of Singapore. This paper has an overview in this aspect. To meet the demands for land data, the Singapore Land Data Hub (LDH) was established in 1989. Pulling together information from government and private agencies, it is a resource centre for comprehensive, timely and accurate digitised land data. Managed by Singapore Land Authority (SLA), LDH has proven to be beneficial for both the public and private sectors.


Spatial Data Infrastructure Work in Japan 2000 – 2003
Government of Japan

Most of the spatial data infrastructure works in Japan are carried out under the Survey Act. Main objectives of the act are to coordinate various survey work efficiently, to standardize accuracy and to avoid overlapping work. Survey works are mainly classified into two categories by the act. The first one is the Fundamental Survey executed by the Geographical Survey Institute (GSI) nationwide, and the other is the Public Survey for local governmental projects or special projects which are carried out by other governmental or public organizations such as the Forestry Agency, the Geological Survey of Japan/National Institute of Advanced Industrial Science and Technology (GSJ/AIST), the Ministry of Land, Infrastructure and Transport (MLIT), etc.



Spatial Data Infrastructure: The Road Map for Middle East Development
El Fatih Wadidi
Map Middle East Conference 2005

The information technology and geoinformation systems require integration of an accurate reference system and unification of datums and SDI standards for the implementation of information systems within Middle East. The unification of the geo-referencing systems within Middle East countries will assist in improving the organizational integration and data sharing capabilities.


NSDI and RSDI: Iran’s activities
Peyman Baktash
GIS Development Middle East, 2005

The goal of NCC Iran is to reduce duplication of effort among agencies, improve quality and reduce costs related to geographic information, to make geographic data more accessible to the public. Much has been accomplished in recent years to further the implementation of the NSDI. The concept of a Spatial Data Infrastructure (SDI) has emerged globally to facilitate the transit of spatial infor-mation from data producers to a vast and ever-growing community of users.



Asia-Pacific Region and SDI activities
Abbas Rajabifard
GIS Development, 2003

This article aims to draw a status of SDI development at different political and administrative levels in Asia. The focus is on institutional arrangements, technological, social and economic dimensions, affecting SDI growth nationally and regionally. The article starts by reviewing regional cooperation in this region and provides a brief description of the past and current status of spatial data and information in this region.


Australian Spatial Data Infrastructure
Paul Kelly
GIS Development, 2004

The Australian Spatial Data Infrastructure (ASDI) provides a sustainable mechanism for linking spatial information users and providers. Relationships amongst government jurisdictions and between the public and private sectors have been clarified and promulgated through the Spatial Information Industry Action Agenda that was published in 2001.


This work is a collection of works done in the field of SDI by various individuals and institutes. Proceedings and articles on SDI from various conferences, Journals and references have contributed towards the development of this article.