Over the course of consulting with government agencies on land information systems for the past 20 years, I once worked on a project for which sufficient security measures were not applied to a country’s land registry system. Before addressing this issue, the government agency started trying to deploy the solution across the entire country.
But it was difficult to sustain the project because there were no rules and regulations on privacy in place to protect the data. Internet access was also not readily available, which hampered the project’s scalability. The project stalled and never reached fruition.
This is a prime example of the importance of the 3S decision framework—Security, Scalability and Sustainability – for when choosing a land administration system. If all three aspects are not addressed properly, such as in the above example of security, any land information system (LIS) that a government deploys will not function to optimal levels and may fail outright.
The framework plays a critical role for government agencies that deploy any type of LIS. This includes land registry, land resource management, cadastre, valuation and property tax administration. The framework helps by providing a set of attributes against which any LIS solution design can be assessed before deployment occurs.
By relying on the 3S decision framework, government entities can devise a stable yet flexible long-term plan for all their land administration systems. This is key because such systems are subject to cultural changes as well as changes to regulations, laws and procedures that government entities must react to on a regular basis.
Without a framework such as the 3S, any LIS system is apt to find itself bogged down as software code changes are applied. This impacts cash flow and creates problems for citizens who want an accurate accounting of all their property interests. Another key concept to understand is that the 3S decision framework functions as an integrated trilogy—the success of each component depends on of the success of the others. And any breakdowns that occur within one component will also impact the others.
For example, as an LIS system scales and is accessed by more and more people—particularly when extended to the Internet—security becomes a more complex challenge and plays a vital role in the system’s ability to scale. And without remaining secure and offering scalability, an LIS solution cannot be sustained over the long term.
Only by addressing each of the 3S attributes can a government agency ensure system stability and deploy LIS components across an entire region or the entire country. Without the framework, the solution is not so easy to duplicate. If you don’t properly secure data pertaining to land rights, you can’t sustain the system over the long term.
Sustainability also requires integration with systems from other government offices as well as with banks and various financial institutions. Security measures must protect not only the government entity managing the LIS, but also the systems of the other entities that the LIS connects to.
Here at Thomson Reuters, we have continuously refined our LIS solutions for nearly 20 years. We began mapping our product development road map against the 3S decision framework nearly seven years go by applying industry-accepted standards, such as the LADM—Land Administration Domain Model, ISO 19152:2012. We also applied best-practices relating to both land administration and technology to improve and re-engineer our current processes for adhering to the 3S decision framework.
This 3S (sustainability, security, and scalability) framework directs our product road map just as much as much as it directs our client engagements.