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GeoDCAT-AP working drafts

Published on: 01/02/2015
Last update: 11/04/2019

Published GeoDCAT-AP v1.0.1

GeoDCAT-AP v1.0 has been amended with respect to the original one (v1.0) in order to correct a typo concerning the URIs of the code lists of the INSPIRE Registry. 

Please find version the new GeoDCAT-AP v1.0.1 here.

Table of content

  1. Summary
  2. Objectives
  3. Collaborative tools
  4. Test and implementations
  5. Tasks and meetings
  6. Initiators
  7. Working draft


GeoDCAT-AP is an extension of DCAT-AP for describing geospatial datasets, dataset series, and services. It provides an RDF syntax binding for the union of metadata elements defined in the core profile of ISO 19115:2003 and those defined in the framework of the INSPIRE Directive. Its basic use case is to make spatial datasets, data series, and services searchable on general data portals, thereby making geospatial information better searchable across borders and sectors. This can be achieved by the exchange of descriptions of data sets among data portals.

The GeoDCAT-AP specification does not replace the INSPIRE Metadata Regulation nor the INSPIRE Metadata technical guidelines based on ISO 19115 and ISO19119. Its purpose is give owners of geospatial metadata the possibility to achieve more by providing an additional RDF syntax binding. Conversion rules to RDF syntax would allow Member States to maintain their collections of INSPIRE-relevant datasets following the INSPIRE Metadata technical guidelines based on ISO 19115 and ISO 19119, while at the same time publishing these collections on DCAT-AP-conform data portals. A lossless conversion to RDF syntax allows additional metadata elements to be displayed on general-purposed data portals, provided that such data portals are capable of displaying of additional metadata elements. Additionally, data portals may be capable of providing machine-to-machine interfaces where additional metadata could be provided.


The objective of this work is to define an RDF syntax that can be used for the exchange of descriptions of spatial datasets among data portals. The RDF syntax should extend the DCAT Application Profile for data portals in Europe.

  • To provide an RDF syntax binding for the union of the metadata elements in the INSPIRE Metadata Regulation and the ISO 19115:2003 core profile. The guiding design principles is to make the resulting RDF syntax as simple as possible; thereby maximally using existing RDF vocabularies such as the Dublin Core and DCAT-AP and only minting new terms when no suitable terms are available.
  • To formulate recommendations to the Working Group dealing with the revision of the DCAT-AP, to maximally align DCAT-AP and GeoDCAT-AP.
  • To take into account and refer to alignment of relevant controlled vocabularies (e.g., the alignments between GEMET, INSPIRE themes, EuroVoc carried out by the Publications Office).


Collaborative tools

This section contains all the practical information on the tools used by the Working Group to collaborate:

Test and implementations

Existing tests and implementations of GeoDCAT-AP are documented in a separate page:

Your are kindly invited to test and implement GeoDCAT Application Profile, and provide your feedback to the Working Group via the dedicated GitHub repository: 


This section provides a tentative workplan, identifying the main tasks and deliverables following the Process and Methodology for Core Vocabularies.

  • 2015-03: Establish a Working Group:  a working group and collaborative environment will be set up as described in this charter.
  • 2015-03: Secure Intellectual Property Rights: While the ownership and maintenance of GeoDCAT-AP is with the European Union and European Commission respectively, the objective is to ensure that GeoDCAT-AP is available for free use and redistribution with or without modifications by all stakeholders including the primary user group, namely the EU institutions that publish Public Sector Information and the organisations that will wish to consume such data. At the same time the link to GeoDCAT-AP must be maintained in all derivative works, and the European Commission should be protected against false statements of endorsement and any liability claims for damage resulting from the use of GeoDCAT-AP. To achieve this, GeoDCAT-AP and all documentation related to it will be published under the ISA Open Metadata Licence, which is an open licence that satisfies the above-mentioned requirements. All Working Group members are invited to electronically sign the ISA Contributor Agreement on Joinup.
  • 2015-03 – 2015-06: Draft specification: In order to draft specifications, RDF syntax bindings will be proposed for the INSPIRE Metadata Specifications and ISO19115:2003 based on preliminary work performed under ISA action 1.17. This includes:
  • 2015-03 – 2015-06: Review process: The draft specification will undergo several review rounds within the working group. Comments can be submitted by Working Group members via the publicly archived mailing list. Each comment must be addressed by the working Group. The draft specification will be reviewed taking into account possible changes to DCAT-AP.
  • 2015-06-17 - 2015-08-19: Final public review round: When the Working Group believes that it has done all it can to develop Geo-DCAT-AP, it should publish a Last Call for Review and seek feedback from the wider community. The draft specification will be submitted for public review. Comments can be submitted via its release page on Joinup. Each comment must be addressed by the working Group.
  • 2015-09: Final work: A GeoDCAT-AP WG Draft 7 with proposed resolution to the comments from the public review period will be issued on the 2nd of September. A final WG Meeting will take place in the second week of September. Finally, a final version of the geoDCAT-AP specification is to be expected within the third week of September.
  • 2015-06 – 2015-10 Endorsement process: The final stage in the process is to secure endorsement by the Member States of the European Union, acting through the Interoperability Solutions for European Public Administrations (ISA). The final draft of the vocabulary, together with evidence of actual or intended usage, should be submitted to the ISA SIS Group / Coordination Group / TIE Cluster.


Who initiated this work?

GeoDCAT-AP is a joint initiative of the Joint Research Centre (JRC), Unit H.6 (Digital Earth and Reference Data), the Publications Office of the European Union (PO), and the Directorates-General for Informatics (DIGIT, in the context of the ISA Programme) and Communications Networks, Content & Technology (CONNECT) of the European Commission.

In 2014, the JRC conducted an alignment exercise between the INSPIRE metadata elements and DCAT-AP in the framework of ISA Action 1.17 (Re-usable INSPIRE reference platform - ARe3NA). This work is continued in the GeoDCAT-AP Working Group, supported by Action 2.1 (SEMIC) of the ISA² programme.



Type of document
ISA Open Metadata Licence v1.1