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  1. Partners Contract awarded in December 2000, competitive action for DG-AGRI. Kick-off meeting on January 30th 2001. Completed in March 2002. Administered by EURO-Landscape project of the Institute for Environment and Sustainability, Joint Research Centre

  2. European - Context • European Forestry Information and Communication System (EFICS) established via Regulation, EEC-1615/89, which stated that the EC had to set up a system before the end of 1992; laterpostponed by Regulation, EEC-400/94, until the end of 1997; amended on 25th May 1998 (EEC.- 1100/98) thus allowing continuation of the regulation for a further four years until December 2002. • The objective of the EFICS is to "collect, co-ordinate, standardise process and disseminate information concerning the forestry sector and its development.”

  3. Developments within EFICS (1997->)

  4. Challenge • The challenge for EFIS lies in the creation of an information system that: • Is an Internet-based system (user requires a web-based browser e.g., Netscape/Explorer) • Addresses diverse user needs • Allows flexible analysis options • Employs adequate technological possibilities of presentation • Based upon internationally accepted standards (e.g., Dublin Core, OGC) • Compatible with GFIS

  5. Major Deliverables • Information Resource Discovery System component that allows the user to search metadata stored in on-line database(s) to identify and select available datasets • Will use different data formats (statistical, geo-referenced etc.,) • Data Processing and Visualisation Toolkit that allows the user to display and process selected datasets Fully operational prototype of a reliable forest information system (EFIS) • User Needs assessmentand Prototype evaluation

  6. EFIS Home Page The EFIS top-level menu provides access to main functions of EFIS metadata system, including: All users: SEARCH, BROWSE & HELP Administrator: METADATA ENTRY EDITING

  7. Metabase Query Metabase available: registered in EFIS locator Summary of results Query String

  8. Result from requested query When selecting the ‘visualise’ button the data are loaded to the Toolkit for further processing.

  9. EFI - Long term forest resource assessment databaseQuery result and visualisation Visualisation result: Unexploitable forest - a comparison of France with other EU countries

  10. Unstructured Data Hyperlinks in metadata forward you to unstructured information Unstructured information can be opened or saved on the user’s disk in the same way as any file found on the Internet.

  11. Current limitations • Pilot can display from only ONE meta-database at a time; future EFIS should allow displays from multiple data sources simultaneously • Pilot can locate and display spatial data that is in ESRI shape file format; future EFIS should be able to display data in multiple formats • Pilot displays data in only one co-ordinate system and projection; data providers will create spatial data in a variety of projections, which should be re-projected by the software ‘on the fly’

  12. Potential Applications The Service: 1. Reporting Tool - European Union reporting needs e.g., Ministerial conference, Rural development at International, national, and regional levels 2. Decision support system - e.g., forest-related practices in rural development, input to models for CC. 3. Tool for research and education The Customers • Timber industry and timber trade • Environmental interest groups • Groups with general interest in forest issues • Private forest owners • Senior decision makers (e.g., DGs for Policy) • Forestry data providers • Researchers

  13. Technical Considerations • Future development should take DG ENV Initiative ‘INSPIRE’ (ESDI) into account • Standards • COGI already adopted the ISO 19115 geomatics metadata standard for future EC generated/supported spatial data sets (instead of Dublin Core) • Use of COTS (Commercial Off-The Shelf Software) should be considered as a primary tool for future developments >>Developed VTK software it is non-commercial • Take into account developments in: OpenGIS Consortium, ISO geospatial standards, WWW consortium

  14. Administrative considerations • System must be guaranteed a long-term physical location (European Catalogue server(s)) • Dedicated experts to perform housekeeping tasks i.e., maintenance, assistance to data providers and users, registration records etc., • Establish registration mechanisms for data providers

  15. Thematic considerations • The technology developed in EFIS is generic and thus suitable for application in many fields: • If taken forward for an application in rural development • needs assessment of relevant user groups • new data formats and types (reports) • relevant available information held by data providers • evaluate new technologies and user interfaces

  16. Practical considerations • Encourage the involvement of data providers • Encourage organizations to become an EFIS Node • Web server Java Server Pages servlet engine (e.g., Tomcat and JRun) • Guidance for data providers: • Guidance with metadata entry • Preparation of data sets and corresponding polygon maps (currently straight-forward if capabilities exist to output CSV-files from web database) • Actual link to EFIS (EFIS applet) • Follow developments of GFIS