About the Centre

Centre logo

Our mission is to develop and promote spatial data infrastructures in the form of virtual information systems, enabling governments and societies to use their spatial resources as effectively as possible in a rapidly changing world. We are committed to excellence in research, innovation, and training, with a strong focus on future-proofing research.

An introductory video to the Centre.

The Centre for Spatial Data Infrastructures and Land Administration (CSDILA) was established at the University of Melbourne in November 2001. The vision for the Centre was, and continues to be, to drive the evolving concept of spatial data infrastructures to develop virtual information systems that integrate data and make it accessible for solving the demands facing modern society. We achieve this by undertaking research in Land Administration Systems (LAS) and Spatial Data Infrastructures (SDI), particularly to pioneer ways of supporting sustainability of land uses and the alleviation of poverty.

In recognition of the Centre’s establishment, the Victorian State Government, through Land Use Victoria, provided the initial support to help establish the Centre. Since then, CSDILA has successfully maintained funding through different sources, including competitive research grants from the Australian Research Council, Australian Federal Government, State Governments, and international societies.

Our capabilities

  • UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs)
  • Modern Land Administration Systems
  • 3D Cadastre and Building Information Modelling (BIM)
  • Smart Cities and Spatial Data Integration
  • Urban Analytics
  • Spatial Ontologies
  • Strategic Consultancy and Advisory
  • Capacity Building and Executive Training
  • Smart App Development
  • Advanced Data Integration and Modelling
  • Location Intelligence and IoT
  • Spatial Data Infrastructures

Our vital work has been facilitated and enhanced through:

Research program

As world-class scholars in SDIs and Land Administration, CSDILA is able to encourage collaborative research projects with State and Federal governments in Australia, the private sector, and leading international universities and agencies such as the United Nations and the World Bank. We are also able to strengthen the University’s participation in the formation of public policy and community discussion in matters related to SDIs and Land Administration. We then disseminate research findings through internationally recognised academic publications, seminars, workshops, and conferences.

ResearchStudy with us

Formative activities

Our formative activities include:

  • The UN/FIG Bogor Declaration on Cadastral Reform in 1996
  • The International Workshop and Conference on Cadastral Infrastructures to Support Sustainable Development in 1999. The Workshop was supported by and attracted participation from State and Federal governments in Australia, five United Nations agencies including the Director of Sustainable Development in New York, and the World Bank
  • The UN/FIG Bathurst Declaration on Land Administration for Sustainable Development in 1999. The Declaration was presented to and endorsed by United Nations conferences in New York and Malaysia

Increased interest in spatial data and land administration infrastructures at State and Federal levels in Australia and internationally resulted in the establishment of the Centre for Spatial Data Infrastructure and Land Administration in the Department of Geomatics (now the Department of Infrastructure Engineering) in 2001.

Our research includes best practices in land administration, the SDI hierarchy, capacity building, marine environment spatial data and administration, decision support systems, evolution of land markets and tenure systems, and servicing of the complex commodities retailed in modern property markets.

Land Administration Systems (LAS)

Land administration is the process of administering the complex rights, restrictions, responsibilities and (increasingly) risks related to land and its use. Historically, land administration was focused on State Land Titles offices. The growing demands of land markets and government policy initiatives has stimulated the evolution of LAS into statewide land information systems concerned with all private and public rights, restrictions and responsibilities, including land use and land valuation components. The state of Victoria’s land administration system is administered through the Department of Sustainability and Environment, a department with a longstanding and close working relationship with CSDILA and the Geomatics discipline within the Department of Infrastructure Engineering.

Spatial Data Infrastructures (SDI)

Spatial Data Infrastructures are an evolving concept that provide the spatial or geographic base underpinning a state’s or a country’s economic, environmental, and social activities. Originally this was provided by a statewide mapping system, but now SDIs involve a complex digital environment. This environment includes a wide range of spatial databases and is concerned with standards and institutional structures and technologies, including the World Wide Web and Wireless Application Protocol (WAP). Spatial Data Infrastructures underpin an information-driven society, facilitating it in becoming spatially enabled. SDIs are an essential part of eGovernment strategies, and key to the provision of timely and relevant information about land to the public, business, and government.

Significant workshops

The Centre’s research activities support undergraduate and graduate teaching programs in the discipline of Geomatics in the Department of Infrastructure Engineering. Major projects include workshops to obtain critical peer review of research, attract interest in outputs, and encourage collaboration and initiatives in government and private sectors.

The Centre facilitates many different specialist training programs and seminars, with highlights including:

  • 13–17 July 2009: An intensive course on land administration – Modern Cadastre and Land Administration – in Melbourne for participants from Indonesian government agencies and leading universities
  • 24–26 May 2009: The third UN-Sponsored Land Administration Forum for the Asia and Pacific Region – Re-Engineering the Cadastre to Support E-Governance – and was supported by the UN-sponsored Permanent Committee on GIS Infrastructure (PCGIAP) together with Iran’s Deeds and Properties registration organisation, Iran Government; the International Federation of Surveyors (FIG); the Global Spatial Data Infrastructure Association (GSDI); and the Centre for Spatial Data Infrastructures and Land Administration, University of Melbourne in Tehran, Iran
  • 2008: The SDI Governance workshop to explore SDI Governance as part of current research activities at The University of Melbourne
  • 2007: The Spatial Enabled Workshop (Land Administration Infrastructure) in Korea
  • 2007: The workshop on Spatial Data Infrastructures’ development and Implementation for national coordinating agencies for Surveys and Mapping Of Indonesia (Bakosurtanal)
  • 2006: The UN-supported Workshop on Data Integration, Thailand
  • 2004: The International Workshop on Marine Administration: The Spatial Dimension (as part of Marine SDI and Marine Cadastre research), Malaysia
  • 2003: A short course on Spatial Data Infrastructures designed for people in the Asia-Pacific Region was run in November
  • 2003: An international workshop on Cadastral Template, Japan
  • 19–20 November 2001: An International Symposium on Spatial Data Infrastructures sponsored by State and Federal Governments at The University of Melbourne, Australia
  • 19–20 August 2001: The International Seminar on Land Administration Trends and Issues in the Asia and Pacific Region which was sponsored by PCGIAP, together with the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO), the Malaysian Government, the International Federation of Surveyors (FIG), the Global Spatial Data Infrastructure Association (GSDI), and the Centre for SDIs and Land Administration, University of Melbourne as part of the 14th annual meeting of PCGIAP in Kula Lumpur, Malaysia