Why should government spatial data be free?

I tripped over this yesterday while looking for some arguments for and against cost recovery. The arguments are quite good and comprehensive. If any of you can think of more send them to the civicacces.ca list or leave comments here.

This texte I believe was put together by Jo Walsh and colleagues as they were preparing positions for the INSPIRE Directive that became official May 7, 2007. Public Geo Data put together a great campaign, an online petition, a discussion list and superb material to lobby EUROGI for Free and Open Access to Geo Data. At the time the UK was pushing heavily for the Ordnance Survey‘s extreme cost recovery model for the EU while other European nations were working towards more open and free access models. You can read more about it by going through the archive of their mailing list.

Here is the full text for Why Should Government Spatial Data be Free?


  1. ivar vasara’s avatar

    note that the UN just announced it would open up it’s data for free –


  2. Tracey’s avatar

    Very Cool! Do you know much about these datasets Ivar that you can share here?

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