Better service through sharing
geospatial data
Lands Department - Geospatial Information Service Unit

Exemplary Services@Gov
2011

The Lands Department's Land Information Centre has implemented an innovative large scale platform called "HKSAR Geospatial Information Hub" (GIH) that allows departments across the public sector to easily access and share geospatial information. Bucking the stereotype of civil services resisting change, the GIH team initiated and developed this new platform which increases the efficiency and speed of decision-making and supports the Government in better serving the public.

Information sharing and improving services

"Our vision is to enable all departments in the civil service to use geospatial information effectively in support of their operations. Using geographic information technology, we are consolidating and integrating our geospatial information with data from various departments and making this wealth of information useful and readily accessible. With all this integrated information easily accessible through one portal, departments can improve their operation efficiency and decision-making processes," said Mr Tsoi Cheong Wai, Senior Land Surveyor at the Land Information Centre who led the initiative.

The GIH makes the flow of information across departments more effective by removing obstacles, said Mr Tsoi. Initially, the GIH team has to demonstrate the GIH's benefits in streamlining daily operations and enhancing public service. As time goes by, more and more departments appreciate the advantages and proactively approach the GIH team for cooperation and creating GIH user accounts.

Support for every civil service sector

The applications of GIH extend to every corner of the civil service. In the public health field, for example, the Food and Environmental Hygiene Department has used the GIH to upload data about the location and amount of Aedes albopictus, a type of mosquito that carries infectious diseases such as dengue fever. With access to digital maps showing the distribution and number of these mosquitoes in each region, Relevant departments can monitor the hygienic conditions throughout Hong Kong and effectively assess and monitor the level of public health risk around specific locations such as hospitals, nursing homes and schools.

The GIH can also help the Police in their daily operations. Emergency callers who need help in the countryside but cannot provide exact details on their location, pose a significant challenge for police search and rescue teams. To facilitate rescue operations, the GIH team has created a tailor-made function on the GIH to analyse callers' provided data so that the Police can plan the search operation with reference to the analysis results.

Departments across the civil service have already found ways to use the GIH to support their activities. In addition to public health monitoring and enforcement operations, the GIH team also supports other areas of public service including heritage conservation, infrastructure construction, town planning and electoral affairs, etc.

More than 6,000 users from over 50 government departments have used the GIH, accounting for over 150,000 clicks a day. To support daily work, many departments have expressed interest in accessing or offering data to the hub.

The dedication of the GIH team and the joint effort by different departments have made the GIH service a success. "The public looks to us for professional input, therefore we should give our best to them," said Mr Tsoi.

The GIH team makes the flow of geographic information across departments more effective.
The GIH team makes the flow of geographic information across departments more effective.
The interface of GIH
The interface of GIH
A one-stop geospatial information hub
A one-stop geospatial information hub
The applications of GIH extend to every corner of the civil service.
The applications of GIH extend to every corner of the civil service.