Public comment requested: update to GeoSPARQL Standard

Please note:  This Request is scheduled to close on 13 February 2023.
Open Date: 
Monday, 2022-12-12
Closing Date: 
Monday, 2023-02-13
10 days remaining

The Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) is seeking public comment on the adoption of GeoSPARQL v1.1 as an OGC Standard. OGC GeoSPARQL extends W3C’s SPARQL to provide a geographic query language for RDF data.

Version 1.1 of GeoSPARQL extends the originally published standard in 2012 that is used for representation and querying of geospatial linked data for the Semantic Web in new ways. 

SPARQL is one of several key technologies that enable the “Semantic Web” or “Web of data,” where data is published to the Web so that it can be accessed, shared, and reused across applications and users. In other words, in a manner aligned with the FAIR data principles (Findable, Accessible, Interoperable, and Reusable). SPARQL specifications provide languages and protocols to query and manipulate RDF graph content on the Web or in an RDF store.

Other technologies identified by the W3C Semantic Web Activity as being key to the Semantic Web include the Resource Description Framework (RDF) data model, which provides a directed, labeled graph data format for representing data on the Web, and the OWL 2 Web Ontology Language, which provides an ontology for the consistent naming and identification of data.

The OGC GeoSPARQL draft specification complements these technologies by providing a geographic query language for RDF data that contains a spatial component.

The OGC GeoSPARQL Standard comprises multiple parts, with the Standard defining:

  • A formal profile;

  • The Standard document;

  • A core RDF/OWL ontology for geographic information representation;

  • A set of SPARQL extension functions;

  • A Functions & Rules vocabulary, derived from the ontology;

  • A Simple Features geometry types vocabulary;

  • SHACL shapes for RDF data validation.

GeoSPARQL does not define a comprehensive vocabulary for representing spatial information. Instead GeoSPARQL defines a core set of classes, properties, and datatypes that can be used to construct query patterns. Many useful extensions to this vocabulary are possible, and the chairs of the OGC GeoSPARQL Standards Working Group intend for the Semantic Web and Geospatial communities to develop additional vocabularies for describing spatial information. 

GeoSPARQL v1.1 adds the following changes to the existing v1.0 Standard:

Support for several now common geometry formats such as GeoJSON have been added as well as many simple non-topological functions, such as one to calculate area. A novel addition is support for Discrete Global Grid System geometry representations.

The GeoSPARQL ontology has been updated with Ontology properties for metric and non-metric measurements using properties and with classes to represent FeatureCollections and GeometryCollections. Also, a set of SHACL shapes allows validation of the GeoSPARQL 1.1 formatted graphs.

Many major updates to GeoSPARQL in this release though are not changes to the core standard but great improvements in the documentation and exemplification. Mappings to other models and query languages are also now included as well as data validators and support vocabularies, all of which are presented as a formal profile of multiple, related, resources with defined roles.

OGC Members interested in staying up to date on the progress of this standard, or contributing to its development, are encouraged to join the GeoSPARQL SWG via the OGC Portal.


Comments can be submitted to a dedicated email reflector for a thirty day period ending on the "Close request date" listed above, Comments received will be consolidated and reviewed by OGC members for incorporation into the document. Please submit your comments using the following link: requests [at] (Click here to submit comments) The link provided above should include a standard template in the message body. If the preloaded message body does not work properly using your mail client, please refer to the following template for the message body: Comments Template


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