A strategic approach to data sharing

Feb 2008 | Comments Off on A strategic approach to data sharing

Mansour Ahmadi Foroushani

For geo information management in petroleum pipeline construction

RECENTadvances in information and communication technology (ICT) have resulted in a changing environment with many interdependencies between organizations. There are various data services produced and consumed within the process of enhancement of pipelines project. This happens along the various phases; feasibility study, land allocation, execution and operation. Problems in data sharing arise from the fact that data services are not properly documented resulting in difficulties in updating data, data duplication and long administrative inter–organisational procedures[1]. This article presents a method for elaborating the trade-off between existing situation and the desired future in case of improving conditional data sharing.


Figure 1: designers, planners and decision-makers are trying to minimize threats by choosing the best alternative for new pipeline dtream.


Iranian Oil Pipeline and Telecommunication Company (IOPTC) is one of the distributed companies having eleven main subsidiaries located in different geographical locations. Oil travels a long distance from oil wells to refineries and distribution points all over the nation through underground pipelines. Its mandate can be broadly categorized in four
main activities, namely project profile, project execution, operation and maintenance. Because of the reasons mentioned below, Project profile
is our main challenge and it influences other activities.

The first and foremost is the challenge of developing the petroleum pipelines network. New Oil Pipeline Project (NOPP) and Relocation Potential Pipeline Project (RPPP) need verification of feasibility study that shows conflict between technical design and environmental aspect. However, it can be resolved with minimal effect on the project schedule (Figure 1). Obviously, to come up with an inter-organizational agreement, the long administrative procedure is one of reasons that the data sharing is not taking place as it should.

The pipeline external corrosion is a great threat caused by natural chemical interactions. American Petroleum Institute (API) suggests other risk factors such as pipe material and manufacturing process, highly CORROSIVE SOIL, and highly volatile products. In addition, landslide rock-fall, earthquake and flood are the most serious geological hazards affecting on-route selection of new pipeline. So far, only feasible routes have been approved by decision makers. The Proposed Route is selected to minimize technical difficulty, environmental impact, land conflict and cost. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Region III suggests that when establishing the frequency of assessment, three risk factors should be taken into consideration; specific product differences, location related to the ability of the operator to detect and respond to a leak (Figure 2).


The objective of the new pipeline project profile based on data sharing are;

* To understand current GI situation of the IOPTC and stakeholders
* Investigate the opportunity and bottlenecks in relation to institution and management issue;


Figure 2: natural chemical interaction, natural hazards

o enhance IOPTC performance and develop existing informal data sharing according to the following requirements:

* All stakeholders should have access to the information
* The information should be easily understood
* Consultation report and result should be accessible
* Mitigation measure along the pipeline route


Investigation on existing practice

Table 1 represent MODELS that all stakeholders (company professional,
Beneficiaries of the project, Data provider) can cooperate in an efficient way to achieve inter-organizational goals.

* Model (No: 1) developed by two managerial and institutional aspects is based on Taxonomy of Spatial Data Sharing adapted from Calkins and Weatherbe 1995.
* Models (No: 2, 3, 4) are running as reference models of the case study aim to achieve comparative advantage elements.
* Model (No: 5) is based on inter- organizational relationship adapted from taxonomy spatial data sharing model.

Trade–off between existing and target practice

An appropriate plan, data management and technology will affect the trade-off between existing and target practices. Each aspect of Geo–information use is to be compared alongside a corresponding guiding principle. Both planning process (internal) and Technology (external) pressure is against the guideline that is supported by GI-policy. If any aspect of Geo-Information use is not in line with the guideline, future investigations need to be made. (Figure 3)

Planning process (internal pressure)

Collection and maintenance

The aim is to keep a record of what data is needed to perform a certain task, and where it is being sent to. Because of the Geo-Information value, the planning process needs to find what data is required? Where that data might be sent? And an event history to record what happens with that data?

Update, standards and metadata

Planning process needs to define standards by adding metadata element to meet up-to-date data. Data can be confusing or misleading if you don’t know who, what, why, when, where, and how it was created.[2]

Real-time data availability

If the data and the relevant Geo-Information is recorded to the specific


Figure 3: sharing in transition (model adapted from Brian wilson – system thinking 2006)

system of NOPP/or RPPP centre, it will be very easy to track and trace the progress of inter-organizational interaction without recollecting data. It can reduce the loss of data in data sharing and speed up data analysis.

Technology (external pressure)

The current status of technology offers many opportunities. From the Geo- Information management point of view, the planning process will use information technology to collect information very quickly. This will include the following components.

Optimum technology

Technology is articulated by hardware, software, operating system and communication protocol. How to store the required information? How to access and prepare access routines? Obviously information technology has become an important aspect in developing countries to achieve economic progress and the relative success in this area [3]. With growing data sets and more complex maps, data upload speeds can limit the use of the system [4]. Therefore, a user friendly information technology should be chosen.

Dataset framework

Framework data and information comprising themes that are continually needed and used by managers is another critical requirement. According to Frank 1992, [5] an organization contemplating sharing of spatial data needs to carefully define spatial objects, attributes, and data quality associated with these objects.[1]

* Acquired data is used as a backdrop
* Acquired data is used to get started quickly
* Data is acquired for long-term usage
* Data is centrally held in a spatial database and accessed on demand.


Building the matrix of change

The Matrix Of Change system consists of three matrices and a set of stakeholder evaluations. It detects harmonizing and interfering practices and presents an overview of an interlocking organizational system.

Matrix construction then proceeds in four steps; Critical process, definition of system interaction, transition interaction and definition of survey stakeholder (Figure 4).

Critical process

First list is the existing goal, business practice and ways of doing NOPP/ RPPP profiles. However, it is rare that all-important practices can be identified in advance. A second list will describe the target practice. Identifying the most important process can be quite difficult but certain analyses, such as SWOT analysis result can help. Processes

No Proprietor Classification Idea Framework component
of data sharing
1 Calkins And Weathrebe 1995 Development of a Taxonomy for research into spatial data sharing – Characteristics of the organization,
– Characteristics of the Data
– Characteristics of the Exchange
– Constraint and impediment
Framework recognises organizational issue and nature of exchange
2 Kenvay 1995 More detailed structure to measure effectiveness and enhance decision making of data sharing – project environment
– sharing classes
– need for shared data
– opportunity to share data
– willingness to share data
– incentive to share data
– impediment to shared data
– technical capability
– resource for sharing
Very comprehensive list of factors that can be rated based on existing exchanges
3 Azad And Wiggins 1995 Typology based or inter organizational relations and dynamics – Organizational autonomy is a critical issue in data sharing Attempts to classify organisation dynamics and behaviour (Oliver1990)
4 Wiliam J. 1995 Why we can not share data?  Institutional inertia Frame work recognises
institutional issue
5 IOPTC Research Concept 2007 Based on inter-organizational relation adapted from taxonomy spatial data sharing model – Geo information institutional Issue
– metadata standard
– Data use policy
– Digital processing (e-work)
– Network connection
– Geo information managerial Issue
– Database management System
– Online data process
– Web-based application
– Organization ICT knowledge
Attempts to classify organizational elements based on experience of field work result

Mansour Ahmadi Foroushani

Works in planning and control department divisionof
Iranian Oil Pipeline
Telecommunication Company (IOPTC).
My coordinates
Mark your calendar
May 09 TO DECEMBER 2009

«Previous 1 2 3View All| Next»

Pages: 1 2 3

1 Star2 Stars3 Stars4 Stars5 Stars (No Ratings Yet)