Enabling geospatial data to support smarter Government – perspectives from Ireland

Dermot Corcoran (Central Statistics Office Ireland) and Lorraine McNerney (Ordnance Survey Ireland)

The partnership between Central Statistics Office Ireland (CSO) and Ordnance Survey Ireland (OSi) has been reinforced with the signing of a new memorandum of understanding (MoU) in March 2019. During the first MoU period between 2016 and 2019, activities were concentrated primarily on visualisation and open data, but now we are working together to produce initiatives for ensuring that statistical and geospatial collaboration can support Government strategic objectives.
Our main focus continues to be the development of the National Data Hub for reporting the SDGs, and through our efforts this is now recognised across wider Government as the single national platform for reporting SDG policy initiatives in Ireland, as well as hosting SDG indicator data from authoritive and non-authoritive sources. However, OSi are now active in supporting CSO’s responsibilities for establishing the National Data Infrastructure (NDI) by creating a postcode API which is free to use by public sector bodies.
The signing of the recent memorandum of understanding is an effort to sustain our partnership into the future. The immediate opportunities exist around the Public Data Strategy, Census 2021, the SDGs, and supporting the NDI while the challenges we face involve building skills and knowledge across CSO, OSi and the wider Irish public service with a view to aligning strategies with the objectives of the Integrated Geospatial Information Framework (IGIF) and the Global Statistical Geospatial Framework (GSGF).