This open community aims to exchange information and views on the European Union Location Framework project, an Action under the EC programme "Interoperability Solutions for Public Administrations".
The Digital Earth and Reference Data (DE) Unit of the Institute for Environment and Sustainability (IES) of the EC Joint Research Centre (JRC), is co-ordinating the EULF, in cooperation with other services of the European Commission.
When is this action of interest to you?
You work for a European public administration and you would like to have a coherent location framework to facilitate the integration of location information in e-government services, increase alignment in existing and future EU policies, and improve interoperability based on geospatial information (GI) and e-government standards. The EULF will build on the Infrastructure for Spatial Information in the European Community (INSPIRE), currently being implemented.
What is this action about?
The objective of this action is to develop and test the concept of a European Union Location Framework (EULF), an EU-wide, cross-sector interoperability framework for the exchange and sharing of location data and services.
The EULF concept consists of a package of recommendations, guidance, methodologies, case studies, training, pilots and collaborative action required by public administrations and stakeholder communities to facilitate the free flow of location data and ensure its effective use in e-government services. The EULF will set up an open and interoperable framework that public authorities should use for their procurement. It will complement and extend the implementation of INSPIRE to facilitate the introduction and use of the infrastructure in new thematic sectors.
The purpose of EULF is to help ‘location-enable’ e-government, by providing a framework for assessment and action for exchange and sharing location information, relevant to all sectors and across borders, using INSPIRE in new situations, delivering ‘location’ interoperability alongside the other ISA actions.
The outcome of the work so far is a strategic vision based on extensive consultation, an initial ‘blueprint’ of concrete recommendations and guidance on topics such as procurement, the use of standards, and opportunities for the alignment of strategies and policies, and a series of ‘pilot’ developments to apply and test the EULF blueprint in key sectors (transportation, marine and energy)
The EULF Vision is based on the premise that: “more effective e-services, savings in time and money, and increased growth and employment will result from adopting a coherent European framework of guidance and actions to foster interoperable cross-sector and cross-border sharing and use of location information”.
The EULF activities focus on five priority areas, agreed with Member States: policy and strategy alignment, e-Government integration, standardisation and interoperability, return on investment and effective governance and partnerships.
The EULF Action, together with Action 1.7 ‘A Re-usable INSPIRE Reference Platform’ (ARE3NA), form the geospatial contribution to the ISA programme, EULF being the framework for adoption on best practice and ARE3NA contributing key technical components, with both supporting the implementation of INSPIRE. They are both led from DG Joint Research Centre. The EULF and ARE3NA actions receive policy and technical advice from the ISA Working Group on Spatial Information and Services, which includes ‘location’ and ‘e-government’ representatives from Member States as well as input from the ISA programme.
As well as having important links with ISA, the EULF Action also re-uses and contributes to the work of other European projects and initiatives such as the European Location Framework (ELF) Project, the GeoSmartCity Project, and UN-GGIM Europe.
What are the objectives?
- Assess the current state of play in Member States and European policy regarding the use of location information and its integration in e-government services.
- Work with Member States and relevant Commission departments to develop a vision for the EULF.
- Prepare a EULF blueprint of methodologies, guidelines and best practices in five focus areas: policy and strategy alignment, e-Government integration, standardisation and interoperability, return on investment and effective governance and partnerships.
- Test the concept of the EULF with pilots in the transport, marine and energy sectors
- Assess the integration opportunities of EULF with the other Actions in the wider ISA Programme
- Evaluate the requirements and approach for sustainability of the EULF
What are the benefits?
Examples of the beneficiaries and benefits are as follows:
- Member State and European Commission policy-makers: increased awareness of location and interoperability; increased policy coherence.
- Public sector users of location data and services: better processes and systems, effective links across the public sector.
- Public sector providers of location data and services: access to guidelines and best practices, reusable approaches.
- Citizens and businesses using public sector location-based services: improved services, simplified interactions with government.
- Private sector suppliers of location-based products and services: better government partnerships, easier introduction of new products, market access.
EULF Strategic Vision: provides a shared vision and rationale for the European Union Location Framework, defines its scope and highlights the governance and implementation approach.
The Assessment of the Conditions for a EULF provides an assessment of the state of play in the five focus areas of the EULF, and the need for EULF action in these areas.
The EULF Blueprint contains recommendations, guidelines, methodologies and best practices in the EULF focus areas. The EULF Guidelines for Public Procurement of Geospatial Technologies focus on the procurement of location information products and services, such as the acquisition of new location data to support applications, the acquisition of solutions for using location data and services in e Government processes and products and/or services for making data interoperable and/or accessible. The EULF Guidelines for public administrations on location privacy outline the key obligations that public administrations should comply with when handling personal location data and raise awareness about the importance of location data privacy, highlighting key implications and risks associated with the processing of location data. The EULF Descriptions of reusable location information solutions identifies a list of reusable location information solutions (including standards and specifications) which could be shared on Joinup; a list which public administrations and other geospatial data providers can leverage when developing location-enabled solutions and services.
The EULF Roadmap consists of a high level implementation plan for the EULF
The EULF/ISA integration strategy and plan consists of a methodology for prioritisation and selection of a set of integration opportunities between the products of the ISA Programme and the EULF.
The EULF pilots are a series of studies in key policy areas, to apply, evaluate and contribute to the EULF
- The EULF Transportation Pilot aims to improve the flow of up-to-date road safety data between road authorities and private sector map providers in different countries, supporting the aims of the Intelligent Transport Systems Directive and drawing on INSPIRE
- The EULF Marine Pilot aims to improve the understanding of INSPIRE in the management of location information related to the Marine Strategy Framework Directive and to provide guidance and tools to help meet the regulatory obligations
- The Energy Feasibility Study has developed a location-based methodology to support different energy efficiency policies relating to buildings in cities. An Energy Pilot Study has been initiated which aims to prove the methodology and create re-usable tools for municipalities.
Completion of the work under the ISA programme will involve further evolution of the Blueprint and Roadmap, based on lessons learned from the Pilots and emerging priorities. New guidance will be developed for “Policy Alignment” and “Implementation of Location Enabled e-Government Services”, additional use cases will be selected and implemented for the integration of INSPIRE in e-Governmental processes, and an initial EULF training package will be created.
There will also be activities to improve integration between EULF and other ISA Actions, such as:
- contributing to the revision of the EIF and improving the alignment of the EULF with the EIF interoperability levels, principles, and recommendations
- supporting the use of the EIRA
- contributing to the EFIR and EIC
- referring to and providing input to the ICT implications of EU legislation impact assessments
- elaborating recommendations on access to base registries
- input on benefits methodology and case studies
- sharing expertise and exploring further re-use and reinforcement opportunities.
The activities of the transportation, marine and energy pilots will conclude with, in each case, relevant methodologies, interoperability solutions, and associated learning and guidance created. Benefits will be documented and plans for sustainability developed. Details on each pilot can be found on the specific links on this website or on the EULF communities.
EULF references on the web
Article Title: INSPIRE – Why is This Such a Good Idea?
Author: Ulla Kronborg Mazzoli
Source: PERSPEKTIV NO. 24-2014
Article Title: EULF Transportation Pilot is First to Test European Location Framework Delivery Platform
Author: Matt Ball
Source: Informed Infrastructure, July 2, 2015