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 The EuroGEOSS broker

   To develop a pan-European information system, data and information available at the national levels should be interoperable since many of the issues in biodiversity, forestry and drought are trans-border issues. Ultimately, the same needs are recognized at a global scale. EuroGEOSS is addressing interoperability through focus areas of biodiversity, drought and forests that originated as different specialties. For effective decision making, information from all three and other scientific domains need to be readily available. The develop for interoperability in EuroGEOSS has three phases: interoperability within domains – across regional and national data bases; interoperability between the tree focus domains of the project; and finally broad interoperability across the nine societal benefit areas of GEOSS (www.earthobservations.org).  
     
   

There are many approaches to interoperability. INSPIRE addresses it through mandates and defined operating environments. EuroGEOSS is addressing an approach using a broker utilizing software approaches to facilitate interoperability while minimizing the impact on existing services.  The steps for broker development are:

  • Extend the traditional SOA approach
  • Enable multi-disciplinary interoperability
  • Implement Broker, Mediation,
    and simple chaining services
  • Make use of the GI-cat technology
 

An initial operating capability has been implemented. A wide range of services are supported by the broker. These include discovery/catalog services, data download services. These are primarily based on OGC standard interfaces. Enhanced features such as messaging that supports asynchronous communication patters and enhanced query capabilities. Underlying these is a full feature open source metadata editor that facilitates interoperability.

Enhancements to the initial operating capability are planned during the next year. These include: Ontology for semantic enabled discovery to support natural language use; web 2.0 services and the incorporation of models for conversion of data to information for decision making.

More information and technical details are available here