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EXCLUSIVE - Interview with Dr. -Ing Khafid - National Geospatial Information Network in Indonesia as part of One Map Policy

OpenGov speaks to Dr.-Ing Khafid, Head of Center for Management and Dissemination at the Badan Informasi Geospasial (BIG) or the Geospatial Information Agency. BIG is the national surveying and mapping agency of Indonesia.

BIG is the sole agency responsible for mapping in Indonesia. In April 2011, the Geospatial Information (GI) Act was passed by the Indonesian government. It mandated a One-map policy, standardising geospatial information and making it accessible nationwide through national spatial data infrastructure. It would ensure uniformity in geospatial information shared between ministries, agencies and the provincial governments, as well as the public. The One Map would serve as a national reference.

Indonesia’s geography makes this process particularly challenging. It is an archipelago with more than 13,000 islands. Reliable, consistent and harmonised information is essential for resolving disputes, effective utilisation of natural resources through mining concessions or any other kind of land use, ranging from disaster management and environmental planning to agriculture. It is critical for national and regional development plans.

It is a complex and ambitious project, involving data collection from multiple ministries and agencies, provincial and local governments, along with the private sector. Local involvement is critical for success. The current administration under President Joko Widodo has continued the work, accelerating the implementation. Earlier this year, the President said, “Materialize one map policy, synchronize all law systems and regulations so there will be no dualism and multiple interpretations.”

ICT a crucial role because the data has to be managed, standardised, stored and distributed. BIG is responsible for developing and maintaining the data centres, server and network infrastructure.

The agency collects Basic geospatial information, Spatial planning information and Thematic strategic geospatial information (revolving around hydrology, climatology and hazards for example).

The challenge is how to integrate and synchronise the data. All data must be placed in the same reference model, same format, same standard and after that synchronisation has to be done to eliminate conflicts in the data. The quality of the collected data has to be improved.

National standards were to be established for geospatial data acquisition, data and information processing, data and information storage and security, data and information distribution and information utilization. “We want to use the national standards, for all the collection of data from all the relevant institutions in Indonesia”, Dr. Khafid said.

It will also be accessible to the public. Some data is classified and only for internal use by agencies. But most of the data is public.

Dr. Khafid said, “The customers want to access the data as fast as possible using online facilities.

Making the data accessible and searchable is one the core focus areas. Open source technology is being used for the portal for data sharing.

We have collaborations with ministries and other agencies, provincial governments. Based on government regulation no.27 in the year 2014, we have to establish so-called national geospatial information network.

Presidential Decree No. 27 year 2014 specified the establishment of a National Geospatial Information Network.

Talking about BIG’s role as the national network connector, Dr. Khafid explained, “The system connects our office to other institutions across the country, for all the agencies, including those in the rural areas in the provinces. We have set up the network but we are yet to achieve our target of 600 agencies, ministries and local government. But right now, we brought 60 agencies connected to the system. We are at 10% of the target at the moment.”

Security is an important concern as the provenance and integrity of the data has to be maintained.

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