About the Office of Spatial Policy
The Office of Spatial Policy (OSP) is an organisation which exists within the Department of Resources, Energy and Tourism (RET). It is a central policy unit, responsible for facilitating and coordinating spatial data management across Australian Government agencies.
OSP incorporates the former Office of Spatial Data Management which existed previously under Geoscience Australia.
The office was established to strengthen whole-of-Australian Government spatial data policy leadership, and came in response to outcomes of various reviews—including the Strategic Review of Geoscience Australia, the APS 200 Location Project Report and the Investigation into the Spatial Capability of Australia.
About spatial information
Spatial information describes the physical location of objects and the relationship between objects.
Spatial activities now impact on all Australian Government departments and agencies.
The APS 200 Location Project focussed on developing options to address location information policy, governance, and investment. The report Investing in Australia's regions, states that 'for the first time, the 2011–12 Budget includes information on Commonwealth spending in regional Australia by including spatial reporting on where funding is delivered.'
OSP was established on 1 July 2011.
What is OSP doing?
The work to be undertaken by OSP is closely aligned with national spatial policies and strategies.
OSP will be working with the jurisdictions through ANZLIC: the Spatial Information Council, which is the peak intergovernmental organisation providing leadership in the collection, management and use of spatial information in Australia and New Zealand.
OSP is currently:
- developing an Australian Government location information framework based on the seven Location Information Principles identified in the APS 200 Location Project Report
- undertaking a survey of Australian Government departments and agencies to determine the ideal requirements for each of the national framework datasets
- developing data specifications for the national framework datasets so that the Australian Government can meet its business-as-usual operational needs
- leading the development of a detailed plan to implement the location information framework—including formal governance arrangements and related policies, and dataset specifications and development
- coordinating Australia's contribution to international standards development.
Location information principles
National leadership and coordination is essential for the development of an integrated location information environment which can better assist government to undertake its business
Fundamental location data
Fundamental datasets that are critical should be geocoded, linking information to location
Stewardship and custodial responsibilities
Established roles in data stewardship and custodianship will realise greater integrity and confidence in the administration and delivery of authoritative location information
Location information access and sharing
Government is committed to the implementation of transparency reforms and sharing principles
Standards and interoperability
Consistent guidelines on location information standards and interoperability frameworks will optimise access, reduce costs, remove duplication, and improve data quality
Licensing and investment
An open data licensing culture for location information can realise innovation, productivity, and investment gains in areas not traditionally considered
Government capacity and capability
Government will increase its knowledge, capacity and capability in acquiring, managing and delivering location information
Source: APS 200 Location Project (May 2011), Linking Information to Location.
Preliminary list* of national framework datasets
- Geodetic network
- Cadastre (including Tenure)
- Address (physical, allocated and postal)
- Geographic Names (including Gazetteer)
- Administrative Boundaries
- Hydrology—surface water features
- Built Environment
* Note: This list of datasets originated from Land Information New Zealand and endorsed by ANZLIC—the Spatial Information Council in August 2011. The list is a draft only and is subject to a review and consultation process to be undertaken during 2011–12.
For more information about OSP, contact:
Phone: 02 6243 7481