chapter  7
The Commodification of Geographic Information: Some Findings from British Local Government
ByStephen Capes
Pages 18

The commodification of geographic information (Openshaw and Goddard, 1987) is of rapidly increasing importance with implications for government, data users and producers, academics, the GIS industry and society at large. This chapter considers the exploitation of the geographic information commodity in British local government with reference to a fourfold model of commodification. In comparing commodification locally with that at the national and international levels, the discussion draws a crucial distinction between commercialisation and commodification. Whereas the former merely involves selling information, commodification encompasses a somewhat broader conceptualisation of the use and value of geographic information, involving its exploitation for strategic as well as commercial purposes.