Database maintenance and data modelling

Being partner in the European Topic Centre on Urban Land and Soil (ETC ULS) and the ETC on Biological Diversity (ETC BD) space4environment collects, maintains and works with European-wide environmental databases managed by the European Environment Agency (EEA). This includes analysing the territorial and environmental dimension of issues like urban sprawl, territorial cohesion policy, ecosystem mapping and ecosystem assessment (i.e. quality).

For the European ETC BD space4environment is responsible for the quality control of the biodiversity reporting under Article 17 of the Habitats Directive (i.e. conservation status of habitats and species of Community interest), Article 12 of the Birds Directive (i.e. status and trends of birds), the regulation on invasive alien species (IAS) as well as the database on national protected sites (CDDA).

Due to the constantly growing amount of environmental data to be handled processing data in databases offers a more more structured, reliable and furthermore faster way to treat data compared to other file-based approaches. With increasing resolution and detailing geospatial and structural databases allow for systematic and efficient data handling and crosslinking to other related data. space4environment implements both Pan-European (Art. 17/12, CDDA) as well as national (national spatial information portals) databases by use of opensource and proprietary database systems.

In the LUCAS 2018 Mastergrid project, space4environment was responsible for the development of the photo-interpretation interface and the development of a database for storing the land cover interpretation results from over 700,000 sample points in a database. As photo-interpretation and quality control happened in de-central places, a database structure was developed allowing near-real time (within 1 day) validation of the interpretation results and provision of feedback to the interpretation team.


Image credits: Icon set by RRZEicons / CC-BY-SA-3.0 & Image by Isaiah van Hunen / CC-BY-SA-2.0