Synonyms for INSPIRE spatial objects

The assets presented on this page, datasets and TreeMap visualisation, are part of the ELISE action study "Using synonyms to better data discoverability". They are the result of applying the suggested methodology using the synonym Finder tool to collect synonyms and related terms.


The ELISE action study "Using synonyms to better data discoverability intended to demonstrate the wealth and benefits of reusing semantic resources. It also aimed to show how vocabularies, when linked and working properly together, can help improve the usability of online tools. For example, their input functionalities are more "natural" to a user who is not necessarily an expert in a particular domain. Both the methodology, the tool and the experiment promote semantic interoperability.

The methodology was applied in the spatial data field, particularly in some INSPIRE Directive resources.

The experiment identified three areas of possible crossed interactions within the environmental domain: agriculture, noise and water. The starting point is a set of spatial object types from the INSPIRE data models related to these "use cases". Some examples are:

The objective was to obtain semiautomatically synonyms from third-party vocabularies to break down the semantic challenges that jargon unintentionally can pose, helping users interested in the domain but not mastering their semantics. 

When associated with the original term, the resulting terms could help improve the usability and discoverability of geoportals and data catalogues' data in general.

The resulting data sets are available below for download. An interactive visualisation allows one to browse and discover synonyms and related terms in the different use cases.

Check out the methodology in the Report: Using synonyms to better data discoverability


Visualising synonyms

The treemap starts with three "umbrella" topics Agriculture, Noise & Water, including in the next level, terms from the INSPIRE Directive guidelines (spatial objects).

As the user clicks on them, different terms expand into new ones.

The found synonyms and related terms can take the form of "labels" or "concepts" (generally URIs). 

In this example, they have been retrieved from third-party vocabularies, including LusTRE, Wordnet, and Wikidata.