and OGD apps
Upper Austrian Federal Government (Department of Geoinformation)

A. Problem Analysis

 1. What was the problem before the implementation of the initiative?
With " and OGD apps" the extensive collections of maps from the Digital Upper Austrian Geographic Information System (called DORIS – made usable on different mobile devices. Both - apps and the maps - can be used for free. These activities are based on the efforts for Open Government Data: "Open Upper Austria" To discover one's own state or local places in detail, global land mapping services like Google Maps, of BingMaps & Co. are not really enough. Especially with regard to the demand for professional content which go far beyond aerial photographs and maps, DORIS as "digital cabinet for maps" offers endless opportunities to explore Upper Austria in the truest sense of the word. To ease up the expeditions for users, DORIS has developed its own desktop mapping applications for the web. These combine the advantages of ease of use and speed, with a wide range of specialized geographic data. In addition, it is also possible to overlay historical maps with actual content.

B. Strategic Approach

 2. What was the solution?
In the public management of the province of Upper Austria for more than 20 years the geographical information system "DORIS" is used as an important decision support system. Available for planning in road construction, water management, environmental protection and nature conservation in spatial planning, surveying and in the forestry. Therefore very quickly, timely and objective spatial informations for decisions are available. DORIS also works on spatial analyzes and maps for 3D visualization for project planning. Via Internet, not only the employees in the government administration use these geodata but also all citizens has free access over the website More than 140,000 digital maps are produced per day by the servers of DORIS. A living example of "Open Government Data" for many years.

 3. How did the initiative solve the problem and improve people’s lives?
The aim of the project was to create a mobile application for various platforms (iOS, Android, WindowsPhone, Web-App) - based on standardized interfaces on OGD - to map data of the "Digital Upper Austrian Spatial Information System", and represent information to be able to query. The functionality and content of the app are based on already existing DORIS mapping viewer ( and are to be implemented or expanded in several stages.

C. Execution and Implementation

 4. In which ways is the initiative creative and innovative?
The implementation was done on the basis of available spatial data infrastructures in the province of Upper Austria; on the other hand, the available resources for each platform SDKs and development environments have been used for app development.

 5. Who implemented the initiative and what is the size of the population affected by this initiative?
For many years there has been a close cooperation between the Department of Geoinformation, the University of Linz and the University of Applied Sciences Hagenberg. The geo-experts of the Department of Geoinformation are in demand both as lecturers and supervisors of project studies, master and diploma theses. Also, the submitted project "DORIS mobile" is one of these cooperation projects between public management and science. The DORIS iOS app is part of a thesis by Mr. Thomas Svitil at the Institute for Data Processing in the Social and Economic Sciences at the University of Linz, the Android app as part of a DORIS internship of Mr. Simon Klein, student of "Mobile Computing" University of Applied Sciences Hagenberg and the web app as an DORIS in-house development by Mr. Josef Mitgutsch and Mr. Christian Holzinger. Moreover, the Windows 8 App was programmed by another student at FH Hagenberg, Mr. Felix Auer.
 6. How was the strategy implemented and what resources were mobilized?
Once the province of Upper Austria use software products from ESRI, Inc. (CA, , it was natural to build up the developments on these products. Core elements of the developments are the "ArcGIS Runtime SDK for smartphones and tablets." With these SDKs you´re able to build mapping applications for different platforms with additional features such as Geosearch, geocoding, GPS usage, etc. "DORIS Mobile" is not thought as a competitor to existing mobile Mapviewers or apps (Google Maps, ....); "DORIS mobile" wants to be a leader in official and reliable content: current, accurate, complete, diverse, regional, .. simple and sympathetic. The aim is to provide content which did not exist previously in existing mobile applications; and no one knows the specific details of our home country as well as we. For internal users of the apps and other beneficiaries (eg municipalities), it should also be possible to provide additional information (eg property owners). This would provide the ability to field stuff for retrieving current location based information from the spatial databases in the central office. Subsequently, it should be possible to capture this data locally and update the databases. There was no separate budget for this project. Also, no additional staff in office. The students have aligned their projects and theses on this project. Therefore, the whole project was very cheap.

 7. Who were the stakeholders involved in the design of the initiative and in its implementation?
Users enjoy a wealth of maps on the subjects of agriculture and forestry, regional planning, environmental protection and nature conservation, transport, water, arts and culture, etc. which are available. These data can be combined with different background maps such as highly accurate orthophotos, area maps, and even historical maps. Of course, on the individual topics further information can also be queried. At the "International GIS Day 2012" event - a global open day at institutions which use Geographic Information Systems – we were able to test the new DORIS apps in detail in different workshops around 500 pupils. A major target group of DORIS for many years has been the teachers of geography in higher education. Therefore, there is also a close contact for teacher training. DORIS data and applications are available in the Upper Austrian schools in high demand, so many suggestions from the geography teachers flow in the development of this applications. Until today, both the iOS app and the ANDROID app has been downloaded and installed about 15.000 times. The feedback and reviews are very positive

 8. What were the most successful outputs and why was the initiative effective?
The aim was to implement Phase I of the project "DORIS mobile" with "evolutionary prototyping". This method of software development has so far offered for this project, because by early feedback of the internal users, quick results were to be expected and therefore the tuning of the app development could be facilitated between different platforms. Therefore, there was very early an executable prototype for testing, which ultimately "matured" to a product version 1.

 9. What were the main obstacles encountered and how were they overcome?
The approach aims to make already available the geodata at for mobile devices such as smartphones and tablets. Both "look and feel" of the application and the user interface should be coordinated across platforms. Similarly, the available functionalities and content. A very difficult task, because the SDKs used for different platforms do not have the same level of development. Therefore certain features had to be omitted in favor of "equality" of apps.

D. Impact and Sustainability

 10. What were the key benefits resulting from this initiative?
With " and OGD apps " a lot of maps of the Province of Upper Austria can now be used free of charge on tablet PCs or smartphones, which were only accessible via desktop applications so far. Many companies with field service employees, communities, etc. use these opportunities very intense. The Public Administration of Upper Austria currently use the DORIS App in various state government departments (planning, surveying, conservation, road construction, etc.). Users enjoy a wealth of maps on the subjects of agriculture and forestry, regional planning, environmental protection and nature conservation, transport, water, arts and culture, etc. which are available. These data can be combined with different background maps such as highly accurate orthophotos, area maps, and even historical maps. Of course, on the individual topics further information can also be queried. A "Geosearch" offers the possibility to address, land, places, rivers, mountains, etc. to search in Upper Austria; further distances and areas can be measured in the maps. Also accurate elevation data can be queried. Interesting maps or clippings can be easily sent by e-mail, depending on the operating system, these maps can also be used again in the DORIS apps.

 11. Did the initiative improve integrity and/or accountability in public service? (If applicable)
The innovative content of the apps are in fact, that the spatial data used in this case, come from the same Geodatabases, as all other existing applications as well. Rapidly changing data are integrated over standardized spatial data services (such as WMS, ArcGIS Server, etc.) and are therefore always on the current status. Data and application code are strictly separated. Therefore - without an intervention in the apps including extensive updates on the respective app stores - it is possible to display additional maps in the apps (like RSS-Feeds). Which content will be offered in the app is defined using configuration files (JSON), which are accessed each time you start the app from the DORIS web server (for all platforms equally). This makes it possible to rapidly respond to certain events or occasions and to provide specific content immediately in all apps. This strict separation of code and content (JSON configuration files), makes it possible, to adapt this app very easy for other provinces or departments with spatial data or OGD.

 12. Were special measures put in place to ensure that the initiative benefits women and girls and improves the situation of the poorest and most vulnerable? (If applicable)
The innovative approach of this development consists also in the fact, that the key focus in this project are not only the "normal" open-data approach, but much more in perspective to "Linked Open Data (LOD)". Especially when changing data are offered, this approach is very effective. This fits very well to the unanimous decision of the Upper Austrian Government last year to promote the sustainable development of the information society and citizen participation according to the principles of transparency, participation and collaboration enabled. Overall, the project "DORIS mobile" can be seen as a "research project", which should answer questions like these: • What is the benefit of spatial visualization on smartphones and tablets? • What is the purpose of a DORIS App? • Native apps vs. mobile web apps (hybrid apps)? • Expenditures for app development • Which platforms should be served? • Free vs. chargeable Apps • What is the added value for the customer? In the ongoing phase II (planned completion spring 2014) among other additional functions and data will be integrated in the apps; also a user-oriented approach will be implemented. In addition, an adaptation of the apps to the new versions of the operating systems and SDKs will be done.

Contact Information

Institution Name:   Upper Austrian Federal Government (Department of Geoinformation)
Institution Type:   Government Agency  
Contact Person:   Thomas Ebert
Title:   Mag. MAS(GIS)  
Telephone/ Fax:   +43 732 7720 12606
Institution's / Project's Website:  
Address:   Bahnhofplatz 1
Postal Code:   A-4020
City:   Linz
State/Province:   Upper Austria

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