Infrastructure Engineering - Research Publications

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    Awareness as a foundation for developing effective spatial data infrastructures
    CLAUSEN, CHRISTIAN ; RAJABIFARD, ABBAS ; ENEMARK, STIG ; WILLIAMSON, IAN ( 2006)
    The development of an effective spatial data infrastructure (SDI) often occurs in a fragmented organizational environment requiring a high level of inter-organizational collaboration. Different organizations from various jurisdictions needs to work together closely when agreeing on how they will jointly register, store, use and share data and how they will make their data available to the wider society. This collaboration is generally regarded as very difficult. In particular, organizational issues are considered one of the key fundamental constraints to inter-organizational sharing of spatial data. But what makes collaboration effective and successful? For example people often resist sharing data across organizational boundaries due to loss of control, power and independency. In the spatial community, the term awareness is often used when discussing issues concerned with inter-organizational collaboration. However, a major problem by using the term awareness in discussions of inter-organizational collaboration is that awareness is undefined and often misused as a term in the spatial data handling community. The (over)-use of the term awareness, without having a rigorous definition to rely upon increases the difficulty of understanding and developing collaboration issues. The difficulty in quantifying and describing issues in collaboration make the development of effective spatial data infrastructures problematic since this development should be based on a conceptual framework that clearly addresses the problems spatial organizations currently encounter. As a result, the focus of this paper is on the nature and role of awareness. It explores why and how awareness plays a fundamental role in overcoming organizational constraints and in developing collaboration between organizations. The paper discusses the concept of awareness in the area of organizational collaboration in the spatial community, explains the important role awareness plays in the development of spatial data infrastructures, and introduces a methodology to promote awareness. Furthermore, the paper aims to make people in the community more aware of the use of the term "awareness" – when to use it, how to use it and especially important, how not to use it. The paper will use land administration systems as the discipline for investigating awareness.
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    Spatial Data Infrastructure: an integrated architecture for Location Based Services
    SMITH, JESSICA ; KEALY, ALLISON ; Williamson, Ian P. ( 2002-12)
    Trends in wireless communication towards the development of smaller, faster, cheaper devices are contributing to a radical change in the spatial information user base. With the ability to access information using a mobile phone or a Mobile Internet enabled Personal Digital Assistant, combined with the capability to determine the position of mobile devices, a range of applications known as Location Based Services (LBS) are emerging. These services provide relevant information to users based on the position of their mobile device. This information can be both spatially and non-spatially related, but must be presented in a useful way. The broader issues of LBS, that revolve around enabling a range of users to access spatial information, can be considered under the domain of Spatial Data Infrastructures (SDI). Since the SDI components of people, data, access networks, policy and technical standards parallel the issues of LBS, it is proposed that the SDI concept be augmented to support the development and deployment of wireless LBS applications. This paper describes a proposed case study approach for LBS development so as to determine how SDI needs to adapt in order to support these emerging applications.
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    Spatial data infrastructure management: lessons from corporate GIS development
    Chan, Tai On ; WILLIAMSON, IAN ( 1999)
    It is argued that a corporate GIS is the lowest level in a hierarchy of spatial data infrastructures (SDIs) worldwide. Therefore, SDI development can benefit from a good understanding of the nature and dynamics of development of a corporate GIS. To facilitate this cross-fertilisation, existing definitions of GIS are briefly reviewed in the context of the organisational setting of a corporate GIS. A high level perspective which describes a corporate GIS as making up of GIS modules that play the roles of either an infrastructure or a business process is presented in the paper. The modules are termed infrastructure GIS and business process GIS respectively, with the former supporting the latter. The patterns of GIS development and some long term characteristics of a corporate GIS are identified in a study of the dynamics of GIS development in the Department of Natural Resources and Environment in the State Government of Victoria. These two aspects of the nature of a corporate are also applicable to SDIs and their development. Based on the experience of SDI development in Australia, particularly Victoria, the implications of the observed nature of SDI relationships on SDI management are discussed
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    Defining a marine cadastre for Australia
    COLLIER, P. ; Leahy, F. ; WILLIAMSON, IAN ( 2001)
    As the world's largest island, Australia has a coastline length of approximately 36,700 km. The nation's relative isolation from its neighbours enables it to claim one of the largest maritime jurisdictions in the world. The ocean territory to which Australia lays claim is about 1.5 times larger than the Australian land mass. Given the diversity and extent of Australia's ocean resources, there is an economic and social need to manage, explore and exploit the nation's ocean territories in a way that will maximise benefit, while at the same time protecting the ocean environment. An essential requirement for the consistent and effective management of the oceans is reliable, comprehensive and accurate spatial information. This introduces the complex issue of defining and quantifying the spatial and temporal interaction of a vast array of rights and responsibilities. Not only are our oceans subject to the interests of a diverse group of individuals and organisations, they are also governed by a complex web of government legislation. International treaties such as the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea(UNCLOS) also need to be considered. Many pieces of legislation contain geographical definitions for areas of jurisdiction. Understanding and managing the relationship and interaction between overlapping and sometimes competing rights is a complex problem. The objective behind the development of a marine cadastre is to provide a comprehensive spatial data infrastructure whereby rights, restrictions and responsibilities in the marine environment can be assessed, administered and managed. This paper describes a multi-faceted, collaborative project between the Department of Geomatics, the Australian Surveying and Land Information Group, the Queensland Department of Natural Resources and Mines, and Land Victoria to define the issues relevant to the development of a marine cadastre for Australia.
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    Assessing Spatial Data Infrastructure Architecture for Integration withWireless Location Services
    Smith, J. ; Kealy, A. ; Williamson, I. P. ( 2001)
    Spatial Data Infrastructures (SDIs) have been identified as a mechanism through which complete and consistent spatial data sets can be accessed and retrieved. Whilst SDIs have been developing, wireless communication technologies have been undergoing a rapid evolution. The convergence of wireless communications, positioning technology and SDIs are providing new facilities, new applications and as a result, new challenges for spatial data providers and users. To capitalise on the opportunities presented through the merger of these key areas, the design of SDIs may require modification. Naturally, different applications will have different spatial data requirements, however it is envisaged that there will be common infrastructure requirements (such as data sets, query and delivery mechanisms) that will be applicable for a range of wireless applications. One of the most important issues in relation to delivering information to wireless users is that of data currency. It is imperative that a mobile user be provided with accurate, up to date data. Whilst this is also an important issue for non-mobile users, it is particularly important for users 'on the move'. Thus rather than individual organisations duplicating and maintaining data sets, providing access through a standard SDI would be most beneficial. Infrastructure requirements for Australian wireless applications that utilise spatial information will be determined through the development of a personal navigation system for the visually impaired. The accuracy and reliability requirements of a navigation solution for a visually impaired person are much greater than for a sighted person, thus the rigour of the data content and delivery methods is of paramount importance. This paper overviews the components and issues that need to be considered when building wireless applications that utilise location information. The prototype development will also be discussed to highlight the infrastructure requirements necessary for the proposed technology combination.
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    Location based services-the underlying technology
    Smith, J. ; Kealy, A. ; Williamson, I. P. ( 2001)
    For centuries, people have been concerned with their spatial location and surroundings onEarth. The methods of describing routes and areas of space by one person to another havealways been a function of the available resources. Today these resources include mobilephones, personal digital assistants and palmtop computers, providing people with detailedspatial information whilst 'on the move'.To the Geomatics industry, the potential created by the convergence of wirelesscommunication, positioning technology and Spatial Data Infrastructures (SDIs) is tremendous.It is now possible to deliver relevant information where it is needed most. Time critical andlocation dependent information services have been identified as potentially successfulapplication areas in this domain. Not only will field workers be empowered by such services,but the general citizen will also benefit. There are many examples in Europe and more recentlyin Australia where such benefits are being realised. Most of these examples are termedLocation Based Services (LBS). The underlying technologies of LBS along with their synergywith wireless communication, positioning technology and SDI will be examined.
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    Spatial Data Infrastructure to Facilitate Coastal Zone Management
    STRAIN, LM ; RAJABIFARD, A ; WILLIAMSON, IP (Coastal CRC, 2004)
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    Spatially Administering the Marine Environment
    STRAIN, LM ; BINNS, AJ ; RAJABIFARD, A ; WILLIAMSON, IP (Spatial Sciences Institute, 2005)
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    On recognizing land administration as critical, public good infrastructure
    Bennett, R ; Tambuwala, N ; Rajabifard, A ; Wallace, J ; Williamson, I (ELSEVIER SCI LTD, 2013-01-01)
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    Lessons for federal countries that have state land registries: the Australian experience
    WILLIAMSON, IAN ; BENNETT, ROHAN ; RAJABIFARD, ABBAS ; WALLACE, JUDE ( 2011)
    The federation of Australia and her states have significantly improved land information management and integration since 1982: cadastres were digitized, land registries computerized, web based GIS was incorporated, and SDIs developed. However, the risk of a Land Information Babel as espoused by Justice Kirby in 1982 still remains, particularly in the realm of land registries. Australia is now entering the era of national approaches to land registration. The proposed national eConveyancing system represents the first step. Many more initiatives will follow. This paper presents a new multi-purpose vision for Australia’s land registries. The state based systems need to continue collaboration in order to build a coherent national vision based around key registries, spatial enablement, and shared services. The power inherent in all land registry information must be unleashed. Land registries are more than simply systems for conveyancing. They are multi-purpose tools with the capacity to service society with the information needed to respond to our most pressing challenges, increasingly with a national focus. Future work must focus on building agreement for this national vision, undertaking a major cost-benefit analysis, comparing existing technical platforms, and creating awareness at higher levels of Australia’s significant land information achievements.