Standards and Best Practices

Geospatial Metadata Standards

Metadata is simply defined as data about data. Metadata tells the user the Who, What, When, Where, Why, and How of the data! It is very important to have well documented and current metadata. In order to ensure universal metadata understanding, standards have been set in place by the Federal Geographic Data Committee (FGDC) and the International Organization for Standardization (ISO). 

For more information on Metadata Standards, please point your browser to the following:

Unique Identifier Best Practice

A unique identifier has been implemented in the Transportation Framework database as well as other MSDI Framework layers. This persistent unique identifier is important for maintaining integrity across data providers in federated datasets.

For more information on Persistent IDs:

Method for the creation and development of Montana Adminsitrative Boundary Data:

  1. Use the federated approach to obtain existing GIS boundary data from local governments or other sources, align data to be coincident with appropriate MSDI data layers.
  2. Research the boundary to obtain relevant attribute information.
  3. Obtain source documentation or records, including legal descriptions, maps, or other documents. If source documents cannot be found the Cadastral Framework data will be used and data will be created based upon Levy District Information.
  4. Create data with existing standards: aligning boundaries to be coincident with appropriate MDSI data layers (i.e. GCDB, Cadastral).
  5. Create and publish metadata to the Montana GIS Portal.
  6. Make data freely available for download on the BMSC's data web page.
  7. Create an appropriate maintenance schedule for updates to the boundary layer and alignment with new GCDB enhancements.

Adjusting Data to the GCDB Best Practice: Website

FGDC Standards on Administrative Boundary and Other Geographic Area Boundaries: View Pdf

Montana subcribes to the Standards developed by the FGDC Cadastral Subcommittee: Administrative Boundary Data Content Standard