Below you can find some frequently asked questions. If your question is not listed below, please contact us and we will get back to you as soon as possible!
How can I contribute to the Land Portal?
You are very welcome to add any information you have on land and property rights to the Land Portal. This is completely free of charge! In order to add content to the Land Portal, you need to be registered as a user. You can find more information about what information you can contribute and how, on this contribute page.
Why do I need the Land Portal to find land-related resources more easily? What added value does the Land Portal have over search engines such as Google?
The Land Portal website allows users to search more pointedly to particular resources than a general search engine as Google does. The metadata of all the resources published on the Land Portal, whether they are datasets, indicators, news items, reports, research papers or peer-reviewed publications, are enriched according to Linked Open Data standards. This means that the content is more discoverable by default, because of the use of standards, such as a standard vocabulary. More importantly however, the Land Portal features information from global as well as local/grassroots sources on the same level. Search engines such as Google feature search results in an order that is determined by the amount of visits a website gets or even how much the particular website pays. Grassroots knowledge is therefore particularly hard to find through these search engines. The Land Portal features these sources at the same level as the global sources.
What is Linked Open Data?
The Land Portal offers piloting and innovative information management services by adopting international recognized standards to structure and expose its content and making use of Linked Data technologies to make the content machine readable, interoperable and reusable by others. By making use of Linked Open Data technologies and the semantic web, the content will become more discoverable and easily shared by land researchers and practitioners and the land community as a whole. ‘Open’ Data means that the resources and data are published under open licenses that allow for re-use of the information, which increases the value and usefulness of the information. ‘Linked’ Data stands for semantically well structured, interconnected, syntactically interoperable datasets that are distributed among several repositories either inside or outside organizations. Content becomes more discoverable, because Linked Data technology uses standard controlled vocabularies, such as AGROVOC, to index metadata records. In this way, the Land Portal and its partners contribute to create an ecosystem of information providers where the sharing and reuse of land governance content becomes the norm.
Among others, the benefits of Linked Open Data are that it:
- Allows Information Service Providers in the global North and South to extract data from other services to enhance their own;
- Allows for greater and less problematic sharing of data between institutions: a web of data can make a large contribution to enrich organization information sources with valuable background knowledge;
- Enables third parties opportunities for data innovations (metadata management built on open standards is the key to unveil valuable data which is momentarily locked in proprietary formats and schemas);
- Supports the development of applications that can follow links between datasets;
- Provides the foundation for data-driven websites, tools and applications e.g. mapping mash-ups of statistics, mobile applications driven by real-time open data (semantic technologies like text mining, linked data and semantic knowledge modelling are some of the best developed approaches to extract knowledge from large heaps of information
What are the terms and conditions of using the content published on the Land Portal?
The Land Portal advocates strongly for the use of open licenses to maximize the usability of the information published on the Land Portal. Considering this, in principle, the information available on the Land Portal is available under a Creative Commons 4.0 license. This means that users are free to:
- Share — copy and redistribute the material in any medium or format
- Adapt — remix, transform, and build upon the material
for any purpose, even commercially.
HOWEVER, the structure of the Land Portal allows anyone with an Internet connection to register and create content. The Land Portal cannot guarantee the veracity of the information posted by users. Any given content may have been changed, vandalized or altered by someone whose opinion does not correspond with the state of knowledge in the relevant fields. Therefore, before downloading and re-using information published on the Land Portal, please check whether there are no specific copyright restrictions mentioned. Please also note that in the Land Library, in principle only the metadata is available as Open Data, and the actual resource is not. Due to these reasons, the Land Portal Foundation can in no way be held responsible for the content that is contained in these webpages.