Coordination of geographic information within the federal administration

The federal administration and semi-public organisations supply geodata and geoservices in a variety of ways and with the aid of differing infrastructure. In order to ensure that all interest groups are able to access these data and services quickly and efficiently, a common strategy and effective coordination are essential. At the operational level, this task is performed by the Coordination, Geo-Information and Services division (COGIS) of swisstopo on behalf of the Coordinating Agency for Federal Geographic Information (GCG).

Bildkollage – Links digitaler Kartenausschnitt, rechts oben Datenintegrationstabelle mit den Geodaten des Bundes und rechts unten das Bundeshaus beleuchtet
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Why is coordination necessary? 

In order to ensure that geodata sets are used in accordance with the provisions of the Federal Geoinformation Act, they have to be kept up to date, as well as be compatible with one another and widely accessible. For this purpose, a jointly coordinated strategy and uniform standards and technologies are just as essential as coordinated geodata on the basis of data models, a common infrastructure and services for the storage, processing and publication of the data.    

The Coordinating Agency for Federal Geographic Information (GCG)

At the federal level, the Coordinating Agency for Federal Geographic Information (GCG), which comprises one or more representatives from all federal departments and the university sector, is responsible for the strategic management and coordination of geographic information. In accordance with Article 48 of the Federal Geoinformation Ordinance, the GCG’s duties are as follows:

  • Coordination of the activities of the federal administration
  • Development of the federal geoinformation strategy
  • Assistance with the development of technical standards
  • Operation of a competence centre
  • Advising the cantonal authorities.

The role and duties of the business unit of the GCG are allocated to the Federal Office of Topography (swisstopo), and the Director of swisstopo is president of the GCG.  

What does the COGIS division coordinate?

The duties of the Coordination, Geo-Information and Services division (COGIS) include implementing the federal geoinformation strategy defined by the GCG. The following nine areas of activity were defined with the objective of ensuring that official geographic information can be used more efficiently in line with the provisions of the Federal Geoinformation Act:   

  • Legal bases
  • Guidelines and standards
  • Official basic geodata
  • Metadata
  • Basic geographic services
  • Technical infrastructure
  • Federal contacts network
  • Training and further education, research
  • Pricing strategy

How do the coordination activities take place?

COGIS develops concepts, instruments and guidelines relating to these areas of activity. It also provides the public with basic geoservices and manages the necessary infrastructure. Furthermore, it simultaneously coordinates and supports federal projects that focus on the collection, processing, modelling, harmonisation, administration and distribution of geodata.  

Finallly, COGIS assists with the preparation of standardisation and regulation in the area of geographic information at both the national and the international level.   

 


Coordination geoinformation
Federal Office of Topography swisstopo Seftigenstrasse 264
P.O. Box
3084 Wabern
Tel.
+41 58 469 01 11

E-mail


Relevant authority

COGIS
Tel. +41 58 469 03 15

E-mail


Print contact

Federal Office of Topography swisstopo

Seftigenstrasse 264
P.O. Box
3084 Wabern

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