The National Spatial Strategy

2002 - 2020

People Places & Potential

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Part 3 Your Responses

5    Overall Structure of the System
Overall system structure refers to the basic ways in which separate databases should be linked.
Two basic models exist for how data can be stored and provided.
In the case of a distributed system data would reside in separate databases and would only be connected when a specific enquiry was made which required data from these databases to be brought together. This integration would take place through a software structure (often called a hub or an Internet portal) which draws data from the separate databases over a communications network such as the Internet. The databases would be physically stored and maintained in different organisations and at different locations. The data providers would retain responsibility for their data and may be regarded as the data custodians for their data.
In the warehouse model all, or virtually all, the data which could be accessed by a user through a software structure would be held in one large database.
The above two models represent extreme cases. In fact various combinations of the distributed and warehouse models are possible.
The INSPIRE principles favour the distributed system model.


(1)    What are your views on an appropriate model for the ISDI?

(2)    What constraints could there be for your organisation in adopting either of the 'extreme' models set out above?

(3)    Are there security difficulties that could arise from the different models?

(4)    Should some form of system that combines elements of both models be developed? If so, can you provide an idea of how such a system could be arranged?

(5)    Are there alternative models that should be considered?

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