Geospatial Data Catalogs: Approaches by Academic Libraries




Kollen, Christine
Dietz, Cynthia
Suh, Joy
Lee, Angela

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Taylor & Francis


The role of academic libraries in providing access to and preserving geographic information has seen considerable change. Some libraries are beginning to provide access to geospatial data using geospatial data catalogs and geospatial Web services. Academic libraries are interested in developing geospatial data catalogs, but this can be complicated. The technology is rapidly evolving and many have questions around what software to use and what staffing might be required. The American Library Association (ALA) Map and Geospatial Information Round Table (MAGIRT) Geographic Technologies Committee established the Spatial Data Subcommittee in September 2010 to investigate spatial data catalogs and provide recommendations to MAGIRT on technology, staffing needs, and similar issues needed to develop a spatial data catalog. The subcommittee conducted interviews with eleven geospatial data catalog managers at academic libraries that yielded findings showing the diversity of implementation and prioritization. Guidance is provided that will help academic libraries determine what the best approach is for their situation and needs on their campus.



Geospatial data, Geospatial web services, Geospatial data catalogs, Academic libraries


Kollen, Christine, Cynthia Dietz, Joy Suh, and Angela Lee. “Geospatial Data Catalogs: Approaches by Academic Libraries.” Journal of Map & Geography Libraries 9, no. 3 (September 1, 2013): 276–95. doi:10.1080/15420353.2013.820161.