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Research at OS

  • Expanding the use of GI

We have a very active research programme and our aim is to improve our organisations' capability and efficiency, as well as to help develop and expand the use of geographic information (GI) in Britain.

We conduct research through internal research teams as well as supporting university research at all levels. Our research falls under these four areas:


Geography is central to our business and this research area investigates how geography forms an important aspect of so many activities, and how it can be translated into the development of meaningful and appropriate geographic information.

Data acquisition

Traditionally we've collected the vast majority of our data ourselves or through contractors, with the aim of producing high quality digital mapping. This remains at the heart of what we do, but we're increasingly taking other data to enrich our content and going beyond the requirements of a basic topographic map. To fully realise this aim we need to investigate new sensors, data sources and processing methods.

GeoData engineering

We enrich our data by adding data capture from new sources or sensors – which is the aim of the Data Acquisition research. But our data can also be enriched through analysis, inference and deduction, and detailed data can be generalised. These are the aims of the GeoData Engineering research stream.

Technical infrastructure

In a world where things, including geographical things, can have physical or virtual web identifiers (and these things have explicit or implicit relationships with other things), Technical Infrastructure Research needs to consider the best data modelling, storage solutions, delivery and services to exploit the intelligence inherent in our interconnected world.


Read some of our research which is published at conferences or in journals and books.

Contact us

For more information:

Contact: Anne Patrick, Research Project Coordinator

Email: universityenquiries@os.uk

Discover more

Geovation Programme

This is the perfect funded start-up accelerator if you’re a developer, innovator or entrepreneur wanting to create a product or business using location information.

Smart Cities & big data

Location plays a key part in these areas. Get insight into our thinking.

Some of our research is outsourced through our doctoral and postdoctoral research collaborations. We've supported a number of PhDs, CASE studentships, EngDs and KTPs.

Higher & further education

We work closely with universities to help students interested in our areas of research.

Work with us on your MSc dissertation. A range of research areas are available.

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