The Federal Geospatial Platform (FGP) is an initiative of the Federal Committee on Geomatics and Earth Observations (FCGEO), a committee of senior executives from 21 departments and agencies that are producers and/or consumers of geospatial data, or have an interest in activities, requirements and infrastructure related to geomatics. The FCGEO community recognized an opportunity for federal departments and agencies to manage geospatial information assets in a more efficient and coordinated way by using a common “platform” of technical infrastructure, policies, standards and governance.
The FGP will be a collaborative online environment consisting of authoritative geospatial data, services, and applications, built on a shared infrastructure that will enable the government’s most relevant information to be managed spatially, analyzed, and displayed in a visual context to enhance decision-making support of government priorities.
Geospatial data - data that has a reference to a geographical location - is collected and utilized throughout the federal government to support many objectives such as economic growth, environmental management and social well-being. Many departments and agencies collect and manage large amounts of geospatial data, and significant investments have been made within these organizations. Sometimes data are collected or purchased multiple times by several departments, or, due to a variety of reasons, data are not always easily shared when needed. The demand for, and use of, geospatially-related data and tools is rapidly increasing across government, as well as in the broader public context.
The FGP initiative, an example of innovation and renewal in the Public Service, takes a broad, collaborative approach to managing geospatial data assets more effectively while supporting the Government of Canada as a modern, technology-enabled organization. The Platform will support Canada's Action Plan on Open Government by providing access to comprehensive collections of accurate and authoritative geospatial information, including socioeconomic and environmental data.
The sharing, access, integration and visualization of data will allow users to capitalize on the full potential of using geospatial information in complex analyses. The Platform will fundamentally change the way that geospatial data are managed, shared and used by the Government of Canada, allowing various types of information from multiple, authoritative sources to be harnessed and integrated to support effective program delivery to Canadians. The Platform will expand and simplify access to geospatial data and tools for an increased number of users across the federal government, including policy analysts, senior managers, and non-technical users.
As the Platform is phased into operation, expected to begin in 2014, it will play a key role in a range of complex issues where geospatial data are necessary, such as responsible resource development, environmental management and assessment, regulatory reviews, and safety and security. The Platform aims to make geospatial information available in a coherent way to the public, academic institutions, the private sector and others to conduct research or produce value-added products and applications, driving innovation and stimulating economic development. For more information on the Federal Geospatial Platform initiative, please contact the FGP Project Team at FGP-PGF@NRCan-RNCan.gc.ca.
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