Encyclopedia of Database Systems

2018 Edition
| Editors: Ling Liu, M. Tamer Özsu


  • Linda L. HillEmail author
Reference work entry
DOI: https://doi.org/10.1007/978-1-4614-8265-9_174


Knowledge organization systems; Ontologies; Place names; Toponyms


A simple definition is that gazetteers are dictionaries of placenames. The digital gazetteer as a component of georeferenced information systems, however, is more formally modeled. A gazetteer is defined as a collection of gazetteer entries, each of which contains, at a minimum, the tuple N, F, T where N is a place name, F is a formal expression of geographic location – a footprint, and T is a place type expressed with a term (or code) from a typing scheme. Applications often require, in addition, relationships between gazetteer entries, documentation of time frames, and additional information (as described below). The gazetteer model is a type of knowledge organization system (KOS) – or ontology – which can be modified to represent other classes of spatial-temporal information, such as named time periods and named events [3].

Key Points

Gazetteers support bidirectional translation between informal...

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Recommended Reading

  1. 1.
    Alexandria Digital Library. Guide to the ADL Gazetteer Content Standard. Santa Barbara: University of California; 2004.Google Scholar
  2. 2.
    Hill LL. Feature type thesaurus. Alexandria Digital Library. 2002.Google Scholar
  3. 3.
    Hill LL. Georeferencing: The Geographic Associations of Information. Cambridge, MA: MIT Press; 2006.Google Scholar
  4. 4.
    International Organization for Standardization (ISO) – Technical Committee 211. Geographic Information – Spatial Referencing by Geographic Identifiers (ISO 19112:2003). 2003.Google Scholar
  5. 5.
    Janée G, Hill LL. ADL Gazetteer Protocol, Version 1.2. Alexandria Digital Library, University of California, Santa Barbara. 2003.Google Scholar
  6. 6.
    Open Geospatial Consortium Inc. Gazetteer Service Profile of the Web Feature Service Implementation Specification. OGC 05-035rl, version 0.9.1. 2006.Google Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.University of California-Santa BarbaraSanta BarbaraUSA

Section editors and affiliations

  • Amr El Abbadi
    • 1
  1. 1.Dept. of Computer ScienceUC Santa BarbaraSanta BarbaraUSA