What Communicates Quality to the Spatial Data Consumer? [chapter]

Anna Boin, Gary Hunter
2008 Quality Aspects in Spatial Data Mining  
For almost 20 years now, spatial data providers have been creating and publishing metadata records for their products. One intention of the metadata, which includes detailed data quality information, is to inform potential consumers about the inherent strengths and weaknesses of the product for the purpose of making informed decisions as to whether or not it is suitable for their use. However, in this research we question whether or not the quality information that is typically provided in such
more » ... metadata is actually effective. This research employs qualitative research approaches to explore how users of spatial data determine the quality of a dataset. Consumer feedback emails and semi-structured interviews have been analyzed to discover the perceptions, actions and goals of individual data consumers from a range of professional backgrounds. This paper therefore makes two interrelated contributions. The first is the qualitative research strategy which is inductive, contrary to the statistical experimental designs that are traditionally used in spatial data research. The second comprises the findings to date, that are strongly affected by the context in which they have been collected, which suggest to us that determining spatial data quality metrics is not a separable goal for potential consumers. If this is found to be generally true, then the findings have potential benefits not only for consumers-but also for data providers who may be wasting valuable resources providing data quality information in ways that are of little use to their clients.
doi:10.1201/9781420069273.sec5 fatcat:h7snlny54vdapobdgvot44ade4