International standards

Standards are fundamental to any system that’s aimed at integrating information and allowing government agencies, private companies and the public to access and use this information.

Standards are an important part of modern society; ensuring best practice, common design, safety and many other benefits across every field of industry and science.

Using accepted industry standards is crucial in the geographic information (GI) arena to communicate and exchange geospatial information and helping to achieve:

  • Cross-organisation data sharing, analysis and problem solving.
  • Cost-effective vendor-neutral systems.
  • Standards-based interfaces, ending the need for complex integration.
  • Security of best practice and proven technology.

Influencing, developing, improving

OS has a long history of using standards which relate to our core business of collecting, maintaining, managing and distributing geospatial data.Influe

We’re committed to influencing, developing and improving standards as part of our investment into standards organisations. And:

  • We’re the only European strategic member of the Open Geospatial Consortium.
  • We provide the secretariat for the British Standard Institution’s committee on Geographic Information.
  • We participate in and influence ISO/TC211 a.
  • Sponsor the British Future Cities Standards Institute.

OS was also instrumental in creating the globally accepted standard on Quality Assurance for Data Supply ISO 19158 and the OGC’s CityGML standard.

These make our products more interoperable, stimulating the market in Great Britain and protecting the technology investments made by our customers and partners.

Examples of our standards, knowledge and experience

  • Ordnance Survey’s state-of-the-art geospatial data management system (GDMS) was built using OGC® Geography Markup Language (GML) and OGC Web Map Service (WMS) open standards.
  • OS MasterMap was the first product in the world to be developed and released in OGC GML format and OS now provides a range of products to customers in this format.
  • We built OS OnDemand, a secure, scalable and resilient web mapping service which streams our data into an organisation or onto its website on open standards.
  • We’ve reintroduced OGC compliant Web Feature Services (WFS) to our Geospatial Solutions Service (OSGSS). It quickly queries and serves geospatial data through the cloud.
  • Our OS OpenSpace® application programming interface (API) lets you embed and display OS mapping on your web page or online app. With the OS OpenSpace software development kit, you can create free and commercial mobile apps using OS data. Built on open standards, the service enables true interoperability and data sharing.

A world of possibilities

Internationally, we play a leading role in the United Nations Initiative on Global Geospatial Information Management (UN-GGIM), which encourages standardisation within the global geospatial information community.

We’ve a proven track record in delivering to overseas customers. In preparation for the ‘National 3D Mapping of Bahrain’ programme, Ordnance Survey International was selected by Survey and Land Registration Bureau (SLRB), Kingdom of Bahrain, to build a new 3D-enabled national data model for the Kingdom. The model is built on industry standards from the OGC and the International Organization for Standardization (ISO).

An INSPIREd view

We’re committed to becoming, and remaining, INSPIRE (Infrastructure for Spatial Information in the European Community) compliant for better environmental policy across the EU, and as a result:

  • Have upgraded our OS OnDemand Web Mapping Service to be an INSPIRE View Service.
  • Have INSPIRE compliant metadata and Atom feeds for all our products and web services and are developing INSPIRE compliant data products.
  • We were actively involved in the legal and technical development of INSPIRE, and remained involved during implementation.

Ordnance Survey is a partner in the European Location Framework (ELF), a three year programme to create a single source of authoritative, harmonised geo-information. ELF will take INSPIRE to the next level by providing the practical means for delivering operational cross-border and pan European content and services.

It’s through our extensive engagement, knowledge, delivery and a proven track record that Ordnance Survey is considered a thought-leader with strong influence in the UK and across the globe.

We can help you

Find out how we can help your organisation to improve its international standards by contacting us at:
Email: internationalenquiries@osi.os.uk
Telephone: +44 (0) 3456 05 05 05