Sharing of geographic information involves more than simple data exchange. To facilitate sharing, the GIS research and user communities must deal with both the technical and institutional aspects of collecting, structuring, analyzing, presenting, disseminating, integrating, and maintaining spatial data. Significant efforts are already underway in addressing the technical difficulties inherent in sharing spatial data. Those efforts need to be bolstered with increased activities and research in addressing institutional, organizational, and behavioral problems. In order to spur research on these topics, a group of specialists was brought together to explore behavioral, organizational, and institutional issues acting as impediments or incentives to the sharing of geographic information among and within organizations.
The specialists met for three days of presentations and discussions in San Diego from February 27 through February 29, 1992. During the meeting, participants took on the task of suggesting areas of research likely to be fruitful in addressing both near and long-term problems in the sharing of geographic information. For the research topics suggested, theoretical frameworks and methodological approaches for their accomplishment were proposed. This document reports the discussions and research recommendations arising from the specialist meeting process.