Trends in 2022 for geospatial and location technologies

OS's MD for National Mapping Services predicts trends for 2022 in geospatial affecting the nation.

3 minute read
OS's MD for National Mapping Services, John Kimmance, predicts trends this year which will affect the public sector and organisations beyond.

What do I think is going to be new in 2022?

The government's got three high-level objectives – sustainability, levelling-up and the third is being a scientific superpower. All of which require a significant amount of data to underpin effective policy making and delivery, both from a government perspective, but also to achieve economic growth.

In 2022, we need to ensure that sustainability is at the core of every single business decision. The reason being is that sustainability is going to be a key driver in ensuring that we tackle the global challenges surrounding climate change and achieving net zero – helping us all see the world as a better a place.

Location data is going to be critical over the next twelve months and beyond in supporting green finance and reducing our carbon footprint.

What's going to stay the same between this year and 2022?

The last twelve months has highlighted the importance of location data and the benefits of being able to join different data sets to gain the insights in order to make better decisions and deliver significant outcomes, such as the government’s response to the pandemic. Good quality data equals better decisions for government’s, organisations, for everyone, and we’ll see the value in location data continue to increase in 2022.

What's going to take off in 2022?

At OS, we’re already thinking about how we can better utilise innovative techniques to enhance and improve the data we provide to our customers, as well as ways of capturing that data, that supports our team of over 200 surveyors on the ground. The big focus for 2022 is around satellite imagery and earth observation data. The frequency with which satellites pass over the country, enables us to provide a more rapid view of change. At OS we’re investing in AI and machine learning, which teaches machines to extract certain information from imagery using algorithms, supplementing the accurate data from our surveyors, which enables us as an organisation to quickly and more efficiently capture up-to-date data, providing the insight needed for positive change.

What would you like to change in 2022?

Sustainability is a big focus right now and we need to ensure that sustainability is at the core of every single business decision. However, there needs to be more recognition in the value of location data and drawing on the power of trusted and authoritative geospatial information in helping to hit net zero targets. Location data gives the world a vital lens to assess the impact of the climate crisis and it’s vital that location data is recognised as a fundamental enabler in solving common challenges and supporting sustainability plans globally.

Headshot of John Kimmance
By John Kimmance

Managing Director of National Mapping Services