Statewide Spatial Data Clearinghouses: an Oregon Case Study

TitleStatewide Spatial Data Clearinghouses: an Oregon Case Study
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2012
AuthorsWirth, AA, Avery, BE, Walsh, K, Rempel, M
JournalIssues in Science & Technology Librarianship
Date Publishedaug
Type of ArticleArticle
KeywordsFramework data (GIS), National Spatial Data Infrastructure, NSDI, Oregon Geospatial Enterprise Office, Oregon Spatial Data Library, OSDL, spatial data
AbstractCollaborative planning to streamline as well as to provide citizens with easier access to geospatial data has a long history in Oregon. A milestone in this process was the launch of the Oregon Spatial Data Library (OSDL) in November 2009. The Oregon Spatial Data Library is a joint effort between the Department of Administrative Services Geospatial Enterprise Office and Oregon State University. The OSDL provides a method for sharing public domain geospatial data at no cost to the user and is part of Oregon's participation in the National Spatial Data Infrastructure (NSDI). This article reviews the nationwide setting for development of the NSDI and subsequent development of state geospatial clearinghouses. The paper first reviews these clearinghouses with a specific focus on five user-centric characteristics: keyword search options; availability of training or documentation; ease of access to metadata; presence of locally unique data; and calls for data or metadata contributions. These characteristics address the perspective of users who are neither GIS experts nor familiar with the clearinghouses. Information literacy concepts and the literature review informed the selection of the characteristics used in the review. The OSDL is reviewed in the same manner with the intention of commenting on steps which might be taken to make it more effective in the future.