OSMA Community Meeting

There certainly has been a lot going on recently so probably a good time to try to summarise where I think we are on a number of fronts.

The big event last week was the OSMA Community Meeting in Stirling which was well attended as always.  We had two keynote addresses in the morning from Jane Morgan (Depute Director of Digital Public Services, Scottish Government) and Marc Hobell (Head of Public Sector and Utilities, Ordnance Survey) in which the background to OSMA was described and some thoughts provided as to how it could operate over the 10 years of the agreement.  This was followed by a number of presentations which I believe might appear on the OSMA members area in due course covering a range of topics such as governance, licensing, collaborative projects, Lidar and INSPIRE.  The morning session was closed off by a Question Time style panel discussion.

In the afternoon we had two sessions, one about Ordnance survey products going forward and the other about collaborative working.  These were fairly successful and raised a number of excellent questions.  Generally the feedback was extremely positive and more such events were requested.  We will be looking into the formal feedback and at who attended and who didn’t and try to feed this into a programme of future event.

These are some of my thoughts from the event.  The MOU is intended to run for the next 10 years and some questions have been raised about it long term nature.  We have been working on addressing for 10 years and it’s still evolving although our partnership with Ordnance Survey has been somewhat shorter.

I used addressing to illustrate some of the issues such projects face going forward and noted that the same issues arose with other projects which I’ve been involved with such as the Greenspace Map and the Scottish Detailed Rivers Network.  Without appearing to be overtly negative about  something which I believe is the way to progress GI and realise the benefits, the issue of the interaction of the 32 complex and autonomous local authorities with other partners in going to be challenging.  I don’t think that this indicates unwillingness to participate in such projects but discussions at the event around the SDRN highlighted the difficulties of locating the correct people to communicate with about such projects.

This was also covered at the SDRN Board meeting on Friday and it seems that we need to step up the communication with members and to try to reach beyond the usual suspects.

There are some questions posted in a new  forum that I have created in the One Scotland, One Geography Group on the Knowledge Hub – please contribute you ideas.

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