Connecting and sharing geospatial data

For New Zealand to gain the maximum benefit, data needs to be easily discovered and used.

SDI cookbook cover image for geospatial website

Common standards and interoperability systems are key tools for combining, using and sharing geospatial data.

Standards are a necessary part of being able to combine data from different sources.

Standards are like a common language for describing data – they standardise the descriptions used for different types of data so that data from many different sources can be shared and understood easily.

There are different sorts of standards that allow us to do different things. Some standards allow us to share and exchange data (interoperability); other standards allow us to access and use data.

New Zealand is actively involved internationally in supporting common standards language e.g. developing a model for the exchange of address information.

Geodata – New Zealand’s geospatial data catalogue

New Zealand’s catalogue of publicity-funded geospatial data – – is a tool that allows us to discover datasets and services. It contains metadata that conforms to a particular standard, where everyone is describing their data in the same way.

You can use this service to access New Zealand's geo-referenced information resources – the information that includes reference to a place on, about, or below the Earth's surface.

You can also use to list and / or describe any data or other resources you or your organisation may hold, and to find where the data source is. is a core part of New Zealand's developing spatial data infrastructure and it will continue to develop based on your feedback.

View New Zealand’s geospatial data catalogue

SDI cookbook

NZGO developed the Spatial Data Infrastructure (SDI) cookbook to:

  • help people understand how to use standards, and
  • guide the early stages of implementing a national SDI.

This document draws on worldwide experience and developments to outline what is currently known about the elements typically underpinning SDIs internationally. As with other geospatial reference documents – like the Global Spatial Data Infrastructure Association (GSDI) cookbook (see attachments below)  [EL1] – you can read the chapters individually, or in whichever order suits you.

Download the hard copy of the cookbook Version 1.1 - this PDF excludes chapter 6 of the SDI cookbook6 which is only available online.

Creative Commons LicenceNote: Crown Copyright© does not apply to application description material in Chapter 6 which has been submitted by suppliers of GIS and other spatial products. The different creative commons licensing applying to this material is given in Chapter 6.

Geospatial data standards project

Completed in May 2009, this project examined:

how geospatial data standards for New Zealand are created, used and maintained, and
how the role of the government can be most effective in relation to these.

Download the Geospatial Data Standards Project report.

Last Updated: 25 June 2015