4 March 2013. The Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC®) announcedthe formation of a new OGC Technical Committee Standards Working Group (SWG).The purpose of this SWG is to progress the GeoSciML data model and applicationschema for geoscience information interchange to the state of an adopted OGCstandard. The OGC members convening this group invite the public to comment onthe GeoSciML 4.0 SWG charter (https://portal.ogc.org/files/?artifact_id=51418)and will consider comments received before 8 April 2013.

 The SWG will consistof interested parties from geological surveys, academic institutions, andcommercial and government organizations that utilize geoscience information.

Beginning in 2003, GeoSciML development began under theauspices of the InteroperabilityWorking Group of the Commission for theManagement and Application of Geoscience Information, a commission of the International Union of Geological Sciences.

To improve the ability to query and exchange digitalgeoscientific information between data providers and users, GeoSciML defines, nota database structure, but rather a format for geoscience data interchange. Organizationscan provide a GeoSciML interface to their existing data base systems, with norestructuring of internal databases. The originators of GeoSciML first developeda common conceptual data model, to which data held in existing databases can bemapped. GeoSciML identifies the objects being described (e.g. ‘geologicalfaults'), their properties (e.g. ‘displacement') and the relations betweenobjects (e.g. ‘faults are a type of Geologic Structure') in a model that wasdeveloped using Universal Modeling Language (UML), an ISO standard. From thismodel, the GeoSciML data encoding was developed based on the OGC Geography MarkupLanguage (GML – ISO DIS 19136) Encoding Standard for representation offeatures and geometry, and also the OGC Observations andMeasurements Encoding Standard for observational data.

At present the scope is limited to the types of informationgenerally shown on geological maps, along with boreholes and field observations.

Future enhancements to the GeoSciML 4.0 Encoding standard willallow OWS to support provisioning of GeoSciML 4.0s throughout an enterprise orinformation community.

The conveners of the GeoSciML SWG are Oliver Raymond of Geoscience Australiaand Stephen Richard of the Arizona Geological Survey. 

The following people support this proposal and are committedto the Charter and projected meeting schedule. Others may join this list beforethe SWG is officially chartered, these members are known as SWG Founding orCharter members:



Stephen M Richard

Arizona Geological Survey

Oliver Raymond

Geoscience Australia

Jean Jacques Serrano


Tim Duffy


John Laxton


Mark Rattenbury

GNS New Zealand

Eric Boisvert


Guillaume Duclaux


Jouni Vuollo


Dale Percival

Geoscience Australia

Francois Robida


Carlos Cipilloni

Italian Geological Survey

Bruce Simmons



The OGC is an international consortium of more than 485 companies,government agencies, research organizations, and universities participating ina consensus process to develop publicly available geospatial standards. OGCStandards support interoperable solutions that “geo-enable” the Web,wireless and location-based services, and mainstream IT. OGC Standards empowertechnology developers to make geospatial information and services useful withany application that needs to be geospatially enabled. Visit the OGC website athttp://www.opengeospatial.org/contact.