Research at OS

We have a very active research programme here at Ordnance Survey. Our aim is to improve the way we capture and deliver data by using new, innovative techniques, and to expand the use of geographic information (GI) in the UK.

We carry out our research both internally and through supporting university research at all levels. We focus on four main areas:


Location is in everything and is at the core of our research. We're interested in how people interact with geography in leisure, business and the public sector.
Research and geography

Collecting data

We look at how we can make our data even better, by improving our capture processes and by using novel techniques and sources to get new data.
More about data acquisition

Data science

We explore new ways of both enriching data which includes focusing on analytics and knowledge discovery, and generalising data so that it can be represented in diverse ways.
Delving into data science

Technical infrastructure

It's important to have the right systems to deal with all of our data. We research how best to store and maintain our data and how to deliver information in new ways.
Managing and delivering data

Our research topics

We're researching a wide range of topics, from 3D and height data to remote sensing, linked data, automatic change detection and crowd sourcing.
Delve into our research

Universities and colleges

We work closely with universities and colleges to help students interested in our areas of research. If you're doing an MSc dissertation, Doctoral or Post-Doctoral research, get involved.
More about our work