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A geoportal is a type of web portal used to find and access geographic information (geospatial information) and associated geographic services (display, editing, analysis, etc.) via the Internet. Geoportals are important for effective use of geographic information systems (GIS) and a key element of Spatial Data Infrastructure (SDI).

Geographic information providers, including government agencies and commercial sources, use geoportals to publish descriptions (geospatial metadata) of their geographic information. Geographic information consumers, professional or casual, use geoportals to search and access the information they need. Thus geoportals serve an increasingly important role in the sharing of geographic information and can avoid duplicated efforts, inconsistencies, delays, confusion, and wasted resources.


The United States National Spatial Data Infrastructure (NSDI), started in 1994 (see OMB Circular A-16), is considered the earliest geoportal concept. The U.S. Federal Geospatial Data Committee (FGDC) coordinated development of the NSDI Clearinghouse Network, the first large geoportal. It has many distributed catalogs that can be searched via a client interface.

First released in 2003, the Geospatial One-Stop (GOS) geoportal was developed as part of a U.S. e-government initiative. Unlike the NSDI Clearinghouse Network, GOS was built around a centralized metadata catalog database, with an architecture that links users to data providers through a Web-based geoportal. The user of GOS may employ a simple Web browser (thin client) or may interface directly with a GIS (thick client).

More recently, there has been a proliferation of geoportals for sharing of geographic information based on region or theme. Examples include the INSPIRE, or Infrastructure for Spatial Information in the European Community geoportal, the NatCarb geoportal, which provides geographic information concerning carbon sequestration in the United States, and UNSDI, the United Nations Spatial Data Infrastructure.

Modern web-based geoportals include direct access to raw data in multiple formats, complete metadata, online visualization tools so users can create maps with data in the portal, automated provenance linkages across users, datasets and created maps, commenting mechanisms to discuss data quality and interpretation, and sharing or exporting created maps in various formats. Open portals allow user contribution of datasets as well.

In September 2011, GOS was retired and the content it included by then became part of the broader open data site (Geo.) At the same time, the United States federal government launched the Geospatial Platform, which represents a shift from focusing on cataloging references to resources, to providing shared web services for national significant datasets, API for developers, and end-user applications (built on those web services and API).

List of geoportals[edit]

name class territory content developer technology year from
GeoBlacklight geoportal software 2014
Open Geoportal (OGP) geoportal software 2013
GEOSS (Global Earth Observation Data) global geoportal global
ArcGIS Online global geoportal global ESRI ArcGIS Server
Egyptian Geospatial Information Portal national geoportal Egypt CAPMAS 2016
INSPIRE geoportal international geoportal Europe
IDE Andorra national geoportal Andorra
Geoland national geoportal Austria
Geoportal Belarus national geoportal Belarus
Geoportal of the Belgian federal institutions national geoportal Belgium
Geoportal de Chile national geoportal Chile
Geoportal del Departamento Nacional de Estadística Colombia national geoportal Colombia
Mapas Bogotá national geoportal Colombia, Bogotá
Geoportal Croatia national geoportal Croatia GeoServer
Geodata-info Denmark national geoportal Denmark
Geoportal Estonia national geoportal Estonia
Geoportal Finland national geoportal Finland
Geoportail France national geoportal France
Geoportail France - tablet version national geoportal France
Geoportail France - mobile version national geoportal France
Geoportal Germany national geoportal Germany Federal Agency for Cartography and Geodesy
GeoVisitGuatemala national geoportal Guatemala
India NSDI Portal national geoportal India
Indian GeoSpatial Opendata Portal national geoportal India
Geoportal Ireland national geoportal Ireland
Portale Cartografico Nazionale national geoportal Italy
Geoportal Lithuania national geoportal Lithuania
Geoportal Luxembourg national geoportal Luxembourg
Geoportal Mongolia theme geoportal Mongolia ALAMGaC ArcGIS Server 2019
Malaysia SDI Portal national geoportal Malaysia
PDOK - Publieke Dienstverlening Op de Kaart Loket national geoportal Netherlands
UNSDI Netherlands GeoNetwork portal national geoportal Netherlands
Geospatial Data Service Centre national geoportal Netherlands
Land Information New Zealand (LINZ) Data Service national geoportal New Zealand
GeoNorge national geoportal Norway
Geoportal Poland national geoportal Poland
SNIG - Sistema Nacional de Informação Geográfica national geoportal Portugal
Geoportal of RosKosmos national geoportal Russian Federation 2010
NSDI of Russian Federation[permanent dead link] national geoportal Russian Federation
Geoportal Serbia national geoportal Serbia
Geoportal Patrimonio Natural y de la Biodiversidad del Estado español national geoportal Spain
Geoportal Spain is Culture national geoportal Spain
Geoportal Pueblos Arquitectura Negra Guadalajara national geoportal Spain
Geoportal hotelmapspain-madrid national geoportal Spain
Geoportal Campiña de Jerez national geoportal Spain
Geoportal Madrid national geoportal Spain, Madrid
IDEE - Infraestructura de Datos Espaciales de España national geoportal Spain
Geoportal Bund national geoportal Switzerland
UK DataPortal national (geo) data portal United Kingdom
GoGeo national geoportal United Kingdom national geoportal United States
Geospatial Platform national geoportal United States
NSDI Clearinghouse Network national geoportal United States
Geoportal Simón Bolívar national geoportal Venezuela
Abu Dhabi Spatial Data Infrastructure city geoportal UAE, Abu Dhabi
GeoStor state geoportal USA, Arkansas
CaSIL - California Spatial Information Library state geoportal USA, California
Caracas En Un Click city geoportal Venezuela, Caracas
IDEC, Spatial Data Infrastructure of Catalonia state geoportal Spain, Catalonia
geoEuskadi, Spatial Data Infrastructure of Basque Country state geoportal Spain, Basque Country
New Mexico Resource GIS state geoportal USA, New Mexico
Geoportal Baden-Württemberg state geoportal Germany, Baden-Württemberg
Geoportal Bavaria state geoportal Germany, Bavaria
Geoportal Brandenburg state geoportal Germany, Brandenburg
Geoportal Hesse state geoportal Germany, Hesse
Geoportal Lower Saxony state geoportal Germany, Lower Saxony
Geoportal North Rhine-Westphalia state geoportal Germany, North Rhine-Westphalia
Geoportal Rhineland Palatinate state geoportal Germany, Rhineland Palatinate
Geoportal Saarland state geoportal Germany, Saarland
Geoportal Saxony state geoportal Germany, Saxony
Geoportal Schleswig-Holstein state geoportal Germany, Schleswig-Holstein
Geoportal Thuringia state geoportal Germany, Thuringia
Geoportal Kyzylorda state geoportal Kazakhstan, Kyzylorda Region
NatCarb, National Carbon Sequestration Geoportal theme geoportal United States
National Geoportal of Nepal National Geoportal Nepal 2018
GeoSUR Regional Geoportal Geospatial network of Latin America and the Caribbean CAF, USGS ESRI Geoportal 2007
GeoData@Wisconsin state geoportal USA, Wisconsin University of Wisconsin GeoBlacklight 2014

See also[edit]

External links[edit]


  • Fu, P., and J. Sun. 2010. Web GIS: Principles and Applications. ESRI Press. Redlands, CA. ISBN 1-58948-245-X.
  • Goodchild, M.F., P. Fu, and P.M. Rich. 2007. Geographic information sharing: the case of the Geospatial One-Stop portal. Annals of the Association of American Geographers 97(2):250-266.
  • Maguire, D.J., and P.A. Longley. 2005. The emergence of geoportals and their role in spatial data infrastructures. Computers, Environment and Urban Systems 29: 3-14.
  • Tang, W. and Selwood, J. 2005. Spatial Portals: Gateways to Spatial Information. ESRI Press, Redlands, CA.