Open Geospatial Consortium announces the European Space Agency’s upgrade to Strategic Membership


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European Space Agency upgrades to OGC’s highest level of membership to help drive standards and shape development priorities relevant to Earth Observation

17 April 2018: The Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) is pleased to announce that the European Space Agency (ESA) has raised its membership level from Technical to Strategic – OGC’s highest level of membership.

As a Strategic Member, ESA will participate in OGC’s Planning Committee to provide leadership through the exploration of market and technology trends to ensure that OGC's activities remain effective and agile in a changing technology environment. ESA will also participate in final approval decisions for all OGC standards and nominations to the Board of Directors. Further, ESA will work with other Strategic Members as part of an OGC Strategic Member Advisory Committee to help identify and advance high priority areas of interoperability concern.

OGC President and CEO, Mark Reichardt, commented that “ESA has a long and active history with the consortium, and I am delighted to acknowledge their decision to upgrade to the Strategic level. Earth Observation information is vital to decision making to address a range of social, environmental and economic challenges. This action extends ESA’s leadership across all OGC programs and committees to advance open, interoperable Earth Observation capabilities necessary to meet expanding user needs, and to adapt rapidly to an ever-changing information technology and policy environment.”

The Director of Earth Observation Programmes at ESA, Josef Aschbacher, commented that “ESA is committed to the definition and promotion of open standards that facilitate end-user’s access to our Earth Observation data. OGC is a valuable partner in achieving these objectives. ESA also sees the OGC Innovation Program as a valuable resource to stay on top of technology trends in the geospatial world. The upgrade of Membership shows ESA’s commitment to the OGC’s goals of openness and interoperability, which are an important enabler of Earth Observation data exploitation.”

Over the years, ESA has helped OGC in its mission to advance the development and use of international standards by being a sponsor of Testbeds 13 and 14, as well as a sponsor or contributor to several other initiatives; participating in multiple Standards Working Groups, including activities related to OGC Catalogue and Metadata standards; implementing OGC standards across their Earth Observation Missions; and being an active voting member of the OGC Technical Committee.

From space measurement, to data management & delivery, or deployment of algorithms in the cloud, ESA contributes actively to standards development in support of all the needs of spatial data information systems.


About ESA

The European Space Agency (ESA) is Europe’s gateway to space. Its mission is to shape the development of Europe’s space capability and ensure that investment in space continues to deliver benefits to the citizens of Europe and the world. ESA is an international organisation with 22 Member States. By coordinating the financial and intellectual resources of its members, it can undertake programmes and activities far beyond the scope of any single European country.


About OGC

The Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) is an international consortium of more than 525 companies, government agencies, research organizations, and universities participating in a consensus process to develop publicly available geospatial standards. OGC standards support interoperable solutions that ‘geo-enable’ the Web, wireless and location-based services, and mainstream IT. OGC standards empower technology developers to make geospatial information and services accessible and useful within any application that needs to be geospatially enabled. Visit the OGC website at

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