Facilitating land-sea interface through seamless SDI

Oct 2007 | Comments Off on Facilitating land-sea interface through seamless SDI


A seamless SDI platform would enable the utilisation of common boundaries across the coastal zone to ensure no ambiguity exists and no areas are unaccounted for over the coastal interface. This infrastructure will become a powerful information resource for managers in fields as varied as fisheries habitat management, pollution monitoring and control, shoreline erosion, weather forecasting and tourism development, etc. The information that can be derived from such a fully integrated information infrastructure will facilitate improved decision making at all levels.

Future direction and concluding remark

As discussed above there is a growing need to develop the seamless SDI model as one platform instead of two to increase the efficiency and effectiveness of the management and administration of the land, marine and coastal environment. However, the differences in the marine and terrestrial environments in fundamental datasets, data collection and technology used in these environments will make interoperability and integratability between marine and terrestrial spatial data a big challenge.

In order to create a seamless SDI across terrestrial and marine environments and jurisdictions, it is worth accepting that it is a dynamic and complex process at different levels of government and requires research and collaboration with academia and private industry.

Research into the technical and institutional aspects of creating a seamless SDI in Australia is one of the major research priorities of a research project being undertaken in the Department of Geomatics at the University of Melbourne. The aim of this research project is to design an overarching architecture for developing a seamless SDI that allows access to and interoperability of data from marine, coastal and terrestrial environments.

The ultimate aim will be a refined SDI model and implementation guidelines that seamlessly covers both land and sea that can be used by jurisdictions to create an enabling platform for the use and delivery of spatial information and services. This development aims to aid in meeting the sustainable development economic, environmental and social objectives of the region through the development of a seamless enabling platform to provide more efficient and effective decision making capabilities across both the marine environment and the land-sea interface. However the multidisciplinary interactions in the land–sea interface require sophisticated information infrastructures that not only do not yet exist, but which will not appear if disciplines continue to develop their SDIs in isolation from one another.


The authors would like to acknowledge the support of the members of the Centre for SDIs and Land Administration at the Department of Geomatics, the University of Melbourne and the Australian Research Council (ARC), Linkage-Project on Marine Cadastre, in the preparation of this paper and the associated research. However, the views expressed in the paper are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the views of these groups.


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Sheelan Vaez

PhD candidate
Centre for SDIs and Land Administration,
Department of Geomatics, University of Melbourne

Abbas Rajabifard

Associate Professor and Director
of the Centre fr SDIs and Land Administration,
Department of Geomatics, University of Melbourne

Ian P Williamson

Professor of Surveying and Land Information, Head
of the Geomatics Department, member of
the Centre for SDIs and
Land Administration, University of Melbourne
My coordinates
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May 09 TO DECEMBER 2009

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