EU-Geospatial Legal & Policy Database
Full Title: UNGA Resolution 61/110 – United Nations Platform for Space-based Information for Disaster Management and Emergency Response
Adopted: 14 December 2006
The Resolution establishes a programme within the United Nations – UN Spider – to provide universal access to all countries and all relevant international and regional organizations to all types of space-based information and services relevant to disaster management to support the full disaster management cycle by being a gateway to space information for disaster management support, serving as a bridge to connect the disaster management and space communities and being a facilitator of capacity-building and institutional strengthening, in particular for developing countries.
Full Title: GEOSS Data Sharing Principles
Adopted: 16 February 2005
The GEOSS data sharing principles reflect, on the one hand, the trend towards full, free and open access to Earth observation data. On the other, they acknowledge specific restrictions on the dissemination and use of certain data, metadata and products based on international instruments and national policies and legislation.
Full Title: G8 Open Data Charter
Adopted: June 2013
Based on the G8 Open Data Charter of 2013, the G8 member states plan to orientate their own government data to a position of openness by default. They recognise that open data made available free of charge has great value to society at large. An implementation plan to enact the general position of openness at national level will be put in place by 2015 at the latest.
Full Title: Doha Declaration – Advancing Global Geospatial Information Management
Adopted: 6 February 2013
The Doha Declaration – adopted by the participants of the Second High Level Forum on Global Geospatial Information Management held in Doha, Qatar, from 4 to 6 February 2013 – aims at enhancing global cooperation in geospatial information management in order to address global challenges. It, therefore, encourages to work together under the coordination of the UN; to have a stable, credible and reliable national geospatial information infrastructure built on internationally recognized standards; to promote the use of geospatial information under the programme of the Global Map for Sustainable Development (GM4SD); to develop an agreed set of authoritative core global reference datasets; to enhance the availability of training programmes; and to encourage regional collaboration in the promotion and development of geospatial information.
Full Title: Seoul Declaration on Global Geospatial Information Management (GGIM)
Adopted: 26 October 2011
The Seoul Declaration – adopted by the participants of the First High Level Forum on Global Geospatial Information Management held in Seoul, Korea, on October 24 to 26, 2011 – aims at enhancing global cooperation in the field of geospatial information management in order to help overcome global challenges. It, therefore, resolves to support the initiative of the United Nations to foster geospatial information management among UN Member States, international organizations, and the private sector; to foster and strengthen national, regional and global cooperation; jointly and collaboratively promoting common frameworks and standards, as well as harmonized definitions and methods for the treatment of national geospatial data; and to share experiences in policy-making, supporting legislation, and funding strategies.
Full Title: Treaty on Principles Governing the Activities of States in the
Exploration and Use of Outer Space, including the Moon and Other Celestial Bodies
Adopted: 27 January 1967;
Entry into force: 10 October 1967
The Outer Space Treaty provides for normative background on the exploration and use of outer space. It sets out general principles, including that the exploration and use shall be carried out for the benefit and in the interest of all countries and that space shall be free for exploration and use by all States.
Full Title: Convention on Access to Information, Public Participation in Decision-Making and Access to Justice in Environmental Matters
Adopted: 25 June 1998
Entry into force: 30 October 2001
The ultimate aim of the Aarhus Convention is to guarantee the rights of access to (environmental) information, public participation in decision-making, and access to justice in environmental matters. It is an early example of access conditions that have implicit elements of full, free and open.
Full Title: Charter On Cooperation To Achieve The Coordinated Use Of Space Facilities In The Event Of Natural Or Technological Disasters
Adopted: 20 October 2000
Entry into force: 01 November 2000
The International Disaster Charter aims at providing a unified system of space data acquisition and delivery to those affected by natural or man-made disasters through Authorized Users. The Charter enables full, free of charge and open data to be provided to disaster-related agencies that make a formal request for Earth observation data.
Full Title: Future Trends in Geospatial Information Management: the Five to Ten Year Vision
Author(s): Carpenter/Snell/Survey (UN Committee of Experts on Global Geospatial Information Management)
Date: July 2013
The study undertaken under the auspices of the UN Initiative on Global Geospatial Information Management describes a 5 to 10 year vision in geospatial information management. The authors address matters such as trends in technology, legal and policy developments, skills requirements and training mechanisms, the role of private and non-governmental sectors and the future role of governments in geospatial data provision and management.
Full Title: Report of the National Statistical and Geographical Institute of Brazil on Global Geographic Information Management: Towards Better Global Coordination and Integration with
Author: National Statistical and Geographical Institute of Brazil
Date: 10 December 2009
The report prepared by the National Statistical and Geographical Institute of Brazil describes ongoing initiatives to improve global coordination in the area of geographic information. The report argues for the need for a global spatial data infrastructure and for the better integration of statistical and geographical information. Recent practical experience in this regard gained from the activities of the Institute are shared. The report concludes by recommending a closer active partnership between national statistical offices and national mapping agencies.
Full Title: UN STATCOM – 2011 Report on Global Geospatial Information Management
Author: UN Secretary General
Date: 18 December 2010
The report provides an overview on activities in the field of geospatial information management and outlines the findings of the second preparatory meeting of the United Nations Committee of Experts on Global Geospatial Information Management, held in New York in May 2010. It, furthermore, reports on the mandate of the Economic and Social Council for the work on global geospatial information management and the subsequent preparation of a draft mission statement and terms of reference for the Committee of Experts. The report also describes planned activities for 2011, in particular the first United Nations Forum on Global Geospatial Information Management, to be held in Seoul in October 2011.
Full Title: Communication from the Commission to the Council, the European Parliament, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions Towards a Space Strategy for the European Union that Benefits its Citizens (COM/2011/0152 final)
Adopted: 4 April 2011
The Communication defines the main priorities for the EU space policy, namely ensuring the success of the EU’s two flagship space programmes Galileo and Copernicus (previously known as Global Monitoring for Environment and Security – GMES), the protection of space infrastructures, and space exploration. It, moreover, calls for the development of an industrial space policy in close cooperation with EU Member States and the European Space Agency.
Full Title: Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions on the European Earth monitoring programme (GMES) and its operations (from 2014 onwards)
Adopted: 30 November 2011
Full Title: Communication from the Commission to the European Parliament, the Council, the European Economic and Social Committee and the Committee of the Regions on the establishment of an Intergovernmental Agreement for the operations of the European Earth monitoring programme (GMES) from 2014 to 2020
Adopted: 11 May 2012
Full Title: ESA Data Policy for ERS, Envisat and Earth Explorer Missions, ESA/PB-EO(2010)54
Adopted: October 2012
The ESA Data Policy for ERS, Envisat and Earth Explorer Missions follows the established objective of these missions, i.e. “to maximise the beneficial use of the Earth observation data provided and to maintain a balanced use of these data for a variety of applications, be it scientific, for public good or commercial.” ESA Earth observation data from the ERS, Envisat and Earth Explorer missions are available on an open and non-discriminatory basis. The data are split into two major groups: the free data set and the restrained data set. Access to the free data set for all types of use is granted upon electronic on-line registration and the user accepting the ESA Terms and Conditions, with immediate on-line access to the datasets thereafter. The restrained data, however, are not systematically processed and made available online. Access to those data is initiated by the submission of a project proposal to ESA, allowing ESA to assign a maximum quota for product delivery.
Full Title: Directive 2003/4/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 28 January 2003 on public access to environmental information and repealing Council Directive 90/313/EEC
Adopted: 28 January 2003
Entry into force: 14 February 2003
The Environmental Information Directive implements the obligations of the Aarhus Convention on access to environmental information at the EU level. European Union Member States shall ensure that public authorities are required to make available environmental information held by or for them to any applicant at his request and without his having to state an interest. The basic terms and conditions of access laid down in the Directive are in line with the requirements on access to environmental information as determined by the Aarhus Convention.
Full Title: Directive 2013/37/EU of the European Parliament and of the Council of 26 June 2013 amending Directive 2003/98/EC on the re-use of public sector information
Adopted: 26 June 2013
Entry into force: 17 July 2013
The recently amended PSI Directive provides for the re-use of documents (including data) produced by the public sector in Europe on a free of charge and open basis. The public sector includes all state, regional and local authorities. The Directive allows for marginal cost recovery. Conditions for re-use should be non-discriminatory. This should, however, not “prevent the adoption of a differentiated charging policy for commercial and non-commercial re-use.” Licences on the use of documents and data are allowed, but with an emphasis on low restrictions on re-use. Exclusions are allowed on the grounds of national security, public security, statistical confidentiality and commercial confidentiality.
Full Title: Regulation (EU) No 377/2014 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 3 April 2014 establishing the Copernicus Programme and repealing Regulation (EU) No 911/2010
Adopted: 03 April 2014
Entry into force: 25 April 2014
The Regulation establishes the Copernicus Programme – the EU’s Earth Observation Programme which will provide valuable data for various environmental and security applications and decisions. The Regulation ensures the further development of the programme and defines objectives, governance and funding in the amount of EUR 4.3 billion for Copernicus in 2014-2020.
Full Title: Commission Delegated Regulation (EU) No 1159/2013 of 12 July 2013 supplementing Regulation (EU) No 911/2010 of the European Parliament and of the Council on the European Earth monitoring programme (GMES) by establishing registration and licensing conditions for GMES users and defining criteria for restricting access to GMES dedicated data and GMES service information
Adopted: 12 July 2013
Entry into force: 9 December 2013
The Regulation requires Copernicus data and information to be made available on a full, open and free of charge basis, subject to limitations concerning registration, dissemination formats, and access restrictions. The new Copernicus Regulation of 2014, replacing the one of 2010, ensures the continuation of this data policy. The key elements of free, full and open access in terms of the Copernicus data policy are that 1) there are no restrictions on the use (commercial and non-commercial) nor on users (European and non-European); 2) a free of charge version of any dataset is always available on the Copernicus dissemination platform; and 3) data and information are available worldwide without limitation in time. Users shall, however, inform the public of the source of the data and information and notify any modifications made thereto. Limitation of access might be based, on the one hand, on legal grounds such as international agreements, IPR and the protection of personal data and, on the other hand, on the protection of security interests subject to an assessment of the sensitivity of the data and information to be undertaken by the Commission. Finally, access limitations can be set in exceptional cases for technical reasons, namely if the capacities of the dissemination systems are not sufficient to serve all user requests. Where the Commission restricts access to certain users, those users shall register under a procedure allowing their unequivocal identification before receiving access.
Full Title: Directive 2007/2/EC of the European Parliament and of the Council of 14 March 2007 establishing an Infrastructure for Spatial Information in the European Community (INSPIRE)
Adopted: 14 March 2007
Entry into force: 26 April 2007
The European Union INSPIRE Directive applies to spatial data held by or on behalf of European public authorities and to the use of spatial data by public authorities in the performance of their public tasks. Member States shall establish and operate a network of the services in relation to spatial data sets. Those services shall be available to the public and accessible via the Internet or any other appropriate means of telecommunication.
Full Title: Regulation (EU) 1285/2013 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 11 December 2013 on the implementation and exploitation of European satellite navigation systems and repealing Council Regulation (EC) No 876/2002 and Regulation (EC) No 683/2008 of the European Parliament and of the Council
Adopted: 11 December 2013
Entry into force: 23 December 2013
The Regulation lays down the rules in relation to the implementation and exploitation of the systems under the European satellite navigation programmes – GALILEO and EGNOS. It, in particular, deals with the governance of the programmes and the financial contribution of the Union.
Full Title: Regulation (EU) No 1291/2013 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 11 December 2013 establishing Horizon 2020 – the Framework Programme for Research and Innovation (2014-2020) and repealing Decision No 1982/2006/EC
Adopted: 11 December 2013
Entry into force: 23 December 2013
The Regulation establishes Horizon 2020 – the Framework Programme for Research and Innovation (2014-2020) (“Horizon 2020”) and determines the framework governing Union support to research and innovation activities, thereby strengthening the European scientific and technological base and fostering benefits for society as well as better exploitation of the economic and industrial potential of policies of innovation, research and technological development.
Full Title: Interim Evaluation of the GMES Preparatory Action – Final Report
Author: Centre for Strategy & Evaluation Services
Date: 14 December 2012
Full Title: Interim Evaluation of GMES Initial Operations (2011-2013) – Final Report
Author: Centre for Strategy and Evaluation Services
Date: January 2013
Full Title: Future Brief: Earth Observation’s Potential for the EU Environment
Author: European Commission
Date: 28 February 2013
Full Title: Assessing the Economic Value of Copernicus:
“European Earth Observation and Copernicus Downstream Services Market Study”
Author: SpaceTec Partners
Date: 10 December 2012
Full Title: European Earth Observation and Copernicus
Midstream Market Study
Author: SpaceTec Partners
Date: 1 Sep 2013