April 20, 2011 – The Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC®) announced that the International Organisation for Standardisation (ISO) has approved the OGC Web Feature Service (WFS) Interface standard as an International Standard. This approval was the result of joint activity in the ISO Technical Committee: ISO/TC211 Geographic Information/Geomatics.

WFS was approved by a ballot of the national bodies that make up the ISO membership. The ballot was in parallel with the Comité Européen de Normalisation (CEN), a major provider of European technical standards. CEN/TC 287, the CEN committee working closely with ISO/TC211, has adopted many of the International Standards developed by ISO/TC 211 and also those that result from the ISO/TC211 committee’s joint work with the OGC. The OGC's WFS standard (now also ISO 19142:2010) enables clients with interfaces implementing the standard to access geospatial data and services of many types available on a wide variety of servers that also implement the standard.

“I am very happy that once again, based upon the excellent co-operation with the OGC, we have been able to provide the geospatial community with an important International Standard,” said Olaf Østensen, chairman of ISO/TC211. “The WFS Standard will enable sharing of geospatial information in an interoperable way, and it is already a core component in any spatial data infrastructure. Sharing and re-use of information are among the most important objectives of our standards development.”

In 1995, the OGC established a Class A Liaison with ISO/TC211 and in 1999 the two organizations signed an agreement that allows both organizations to take full advantage of the contributions of the other and that calls for the alignment of ISO and OGC procedures.

Several other standards have received joint approval, including: ISO19125-1:2004 (Geographic information – Simple Feature Access – Part 1: Common Architecture); ISO 19125-2:2004 (Geographic information – Simple feature access – Part 2: SQL Option); ISO 19128 Web Map Service (WMS) and ISO 19136 (Geographic information – Geography Markup Language (GML).

About the OGC

The OGC is an international consortium of more than 415 companies, government agencies, research organizations, and universities participating in a consensus process to develop publicly available geospatial standards. OGC standards support interoperable solutions that “geo-enable” the Web, wireless and location-based services, and mainstream IT. OGC standards empower technology developers to make geospatial information and services accessible and useful with any application that needs to be geospatially enabled. Visit the OGC website at http://www.opengeospatial.org/contact.