GeoXwalk Gazetteer Project (Phases 2 and 3)
The projects aimed to develop a viable geo-spatial gazetteer service, suitable for extension to full service, and consider how the gazetteer data could be made available as a shared service as part of the JISC Information Environment.
The principal purpose of geoXwalk was to provide a shared service within the JISC Information Environment that can underpin geographic searching. The rationale behind the project was that there is currently no unified entry point to assist in geographic searching within the existing academic network as each information provider/service adopts different geographic coding conventions (some use postcodes, others place names, some grid references etc.). The geoXwalk gazetteer provided researchers and teaching staff with access to an online gazetteer for reference and cataloguing purposes.
A gazetteer is a list of place names together with their associated geographic location. The geographic location can be expressed in several ways, for example, as latitude and longitude co-ordinates, or simply as another geographical place name which contains this particular place, such as a county or a country.
This gazetteer was more than just a list of place names and their geographic co-ordinates. It will also classify features into types, e.g. city, river, and will store an appropriate spatial 'footprint' against each feature: settlements are represented as areas, rivers as lines and so on. GeoXwalk is designed to make geographic searching transparent by 'cross walking' these different geographies.
The History Data Service contributed to metadata, evaluation publicity and promotion.