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Create INSPIRE metadata

The European Union requires metadata to be created for spatial datasets and services associated with various themes. The INSPIRE Metadata Implementing Rules: Technical Guidelines based on EN ISO 19115 and EN ISO 19119, referred to here as the INSPIRE metadata guidelines, describes how the requirements can be accomplished while creating metadata that also complies with the ISO 19115 and ISO 19139 metadata standards. This guide describes the workflows for editing metadata in ArcGIS Pro to produce content that complies with the INSPIRE metadata guidelines.

Configure ArcGIS Pro

The first step toward creating metadata content that complies with the INSPIRE metadata guidelines is to configure ArcGIS Pro correctly. On the Options dialog box, choose INSPIRE Metadata Directive in the Metadata style drop-down list.

When you edit metadata in the metadata view, the validation errors you see are based on the INSPIRE metadata guidelines. These rules have been added to the rules that will help you create valid ISO 19115 and ISO 19139 metadata. Due to the nature of the specification, the INSPIRE rules can't be considered exclusive of the ISO 19115 and ISO 19139 requirements. When you view an item's metadata in the catalog view, all of its metadata content is displayed.

If the metadata style set in ArcGIS Pro doesn't match the metadata style used by your organization and by ArcGIS Desktop, you may see inconsistencies when you view and edit metadata throughout the ArcGIS platform.

Edit INSPIRE metadata content

You can create full ISO 19115 and ISO 19139 metadata for an item that also complies with the INSPIRE metadata guidelines in ArcGIS Pro. To get started, complete the following steps:

  1. Edit an item's metadata in the metadata view.
    The metadata view appears, displaying the first metadata editor page. All pages available for editing metadata are listed in the Contents pane.
  2. Click each page in the Contents pane where required content is identified as being missing Invalid Metadata and provide the appropriate content.

    When all required content has been provided the page will be identified in the Contents pane as being valid Valid Metadata.

  3. Apply or save your changes as appropriate.

    It may take some time to complete an item's metadata. You can save your changes and finish the remainder at a later time, even if required information is missing. The next time you work on the project, the metadata view will be open to the page you worked on last.

  4. Close the metadata view when your work is complete.

Create INSPIRE-compliant metadata

The following table describes where you can find each of the INSPIRE metadata elements. You're not limited to the information below; this information is provided to help you get started. If information beyond the minimum is provided, additional content may be required to complement that information according to the standards. This table also contains instructions so the resulting INSPIRE-compliant metadata also satisfies the minimum requirements for ISO 19115 and ISO 19139.

The INSPIRE metadata guidelines has a section describing the rules and recommendations for each metadata element. The numbers in the following table are the section numbers for that metadata element. Where metadata elements from ISO 19115 are included, they're identified by entity and element names defined in the Geographic information — Metadata UML diagrams and data dictionary tables.

Metadata editor pageSteps to fulfill INSPIRE and ISO 19115 and 19139 requirements
Overview > Item Description
  • 2.2.1 Resource title—Type the title in the Title text box.
  • 2.2.2 Resource abstract—Type the abstract in the Description (Abstract) text box.
  • 2.9.2 Conditions applying to access and use—If there are any terms and conditions with regard to using the item, click New Use Limitation and type them in the Use Limitation text box. If there are no conditions associated with using this item, don't add the Use Limitation text box to the page.
  • 2.5.1 Geographic bounding box—If the item is a dataset, series, or spatial service, click New Bounding Box. Provide the bounding coordinates in the appropriate text boxes.
Overview > Topics & Keywords
  • 2.3.1 Topic category—If the item is a dataset or series, check as many Topic Category values as appropriate.
  • 2.4.1 Keyword value—At least one keyword from the GEMET thesaurus must be provided. Add an appropriate keyword section to the page; for example, click New Theme Keywords. Type the appropriate keywords on a separate line in the keywords text box such as Theme Keywords.
  • 2.4.2 Originating controlled vocabulary—Under the keyword heading added for 2.4.1, click Add Thesaurus Citation and type the thesaurus name in the Title text box. Click the Dates heading, and click the calendar button to specify the date of the thesaurus.
Overview > Citation
  • 2.2.1 Resource title—The title provided on the Item Description page also appears here in the Title text box.
  • 2.6.2 Date of creation, 2.6.3 Date of last revision, or 2.6.4 Date of publication—Click the Dates heading. Click the calendar button next to one or more of the listed date types and select an appropriate date; the revision date is recommended when appropriate. Add a time if the information is significant.
  • 2.2.5 Unique resource identifier—If the item is a dataset or a series, click New Identifier and type a unique value in the Code text box.
Metadata > Details
  • 2.11.3 Metadata language—Click the Language drop-down list and click an appropriate value if one hasn't been provided.
  • 2.2.3 Resource type—Click the Hierarchy Level drop-down list and click an appropriate value.
Metadata > Contacts
  • 2.11.1 Metadata point of contact—Click New Contact if an appropriate contact isn't listed in the drop-down list. Type the organization's name in the Organization text box. Click the Role drop-down list and click Point of Contact. Click New Contact Information, and type an appropriate address in the Email text box.
Resource > Details
  • 2.2.7 Resource language—If the item is a dataset or series, click the Language drop-down list and click an appropriate value if one hasn't been provided.
  • 2.7.2 Spatial resolution—If the item's spatial resolution impacts the item's usefulness, type the scale denominator in the Scale Resolution text box. Alternatively, type a ground sample distance in the Distance text box and click an appropriate unit of measure in the drop-down list.
  • MD_DataIdentification.characterSet—If the item is not encoded in Unicode format, click the Character Set drop-down list and click the appropriate value. This satisfies requirements for ISO 19115 and ISO 19139 but is not required for INSPIRE compliance.
Resource > Service Details
  • 2.2.6 Coupled resource—If the item is a service that operates on a dataset, click New Coupled Resource and type a URL for the dataset in the Resource Identifier text box.
  • 2.3.2 Spatial data service type—Type a value from the INSPIRE Spatial data service type list in the Service Type text box.
Resource > Extents
  • 2.5.1 Geographic bounding box—The bounding box provided on the Item Description page also appears here under the Extents heading.
  • 2.6.1 Temporal extent—If a time period or set of dates better represents the item's temporal reference than the date provided on the Overview > Citation page, click either New Temporal Period Extent or New Temporal Instant Extent under the Extent heading as many times as appropriate to provide this information. Click the calendar buttons and select the appropriate dates. Add times if the information is significant.
Resource > Contacts
  • 2.10.1 Responsible party and 2.10.2 Responsible party role—Load a contact from the drop-down list or click New Contact. Type the organization's name in the Organization text box. Click an appropriate value in the Role drop-down list. Click New Contact Information, and type an appropriate address in the Email text box.
Resource > Constraints
  • 2.9.2 Conditions applying to access and use—Any terms and conditions for use provided on the Item Description page also appear here under the General Constraints heading.
  • 2.9.1 Limitations on public access—Describe the security classification or other constraints that restrict access to the item. To provide a security classification, click New Security Constraints and click the appropriate value in the Classification drop-down list. For other access constraints, click New Legal Constraints and click the appropriate value in the Access Constraints drop-down list. If the Other Restrictions value is selected, click New Other Constraints and type information about the access restrictions. If there are no access limitations associated with this item, don't add the Other Constraints text box to the page.
Resource > Quality
  • 2.7.1 Lineage—If the item is a dataset or series, click dataset or series in the Scope Level drop-down list.
  • 2.8.1 Degree (of conformity)—Click New Report and click Domain Consistency in the Report Type drop-down list. Click New Conformance Result and check Pass. If the item doesn't conform with the INSPIRE specification, uncheck Pass. Type a value in the Explanation text box such as See the referenced specification.
  • 2.8.2 Specification—Under Conformance Result, click the Specification heading. Type the title of the INSPIRE specification for the item in the Title text box. Click the Dates heading. Click the calendar button next to one or more of the listed date types and select an appropriate date. Add a time if the information is significant.
Resource > Lineage
  • 2.7.1 Lineage—If the item is a dataset or series, type a description of the item's lineage in the Statement text box.
Resource > Distribution
  • 2.2.4 Resource locator—If a URL is available to access the item, click New Digital Transfer Options, click New Online Resource, and type the URL in the Linkage text box.

Best practices for authoring INSPIRE content in ArcGIS

ArcGIS allows you to create a full ISO 19115 and 19139 metadata record to describe an item that's also INSPIRE-compliant. However, there are a few differences between the INSPIRE instructions and how you should provide the corresponding information in ArcGIS. By following some best practices, the metadata you create in ArcGIS will be accurate and easier to maintain and will transition seamlessly to other metadata styles and formats in the future.

Inapplicable or unknown values

The INSPIRE metadata guidelines instruct you to provide text such as No limitations or No conditions apply when there are no constraints related to accessing and using the item because these metadata elements are considered mandatory for INSPIRE metadata. When a metadata element's value is unknown or inapplicable, leave its value blank when you edit metadata in ArcGIS.

When metadata is exported to an ISO 19139-formatted XML file using other applications in the ArcGIS platform, these elements are automatically added with appropriate values as recommended in the INSPIRE metadata guidelines. Other metadata elements considered mandatory by ISO 19115 and ISO 19139 that are not included in the INSPIRE metadata guidelines will have a nilReason code added automatically in a manner that satisfies the ISO 19139 XML schemas to indicate that the value is missing or unknown. Other metadata standards have similar requirements, but different elements are considered mandatory and the manner in which the uncertainty or absence of a value is indicated in the exported XML file is different. Exporters for each style handle the situation in an appropriate manner.

Content defined by the metadata style

A metadata style configures ArcGIS to support a specific metadata standard or profile. Each metadata standard typically has metadata elements to record the name and version of the standard that was followed, how the metadata content was recorded, and so on. Exporters for each style handle the situation in an appropriate manner. When metadata is exported to an INSPIRE-compliant ISO 19139-formatted XML file using other applications in the ArcGIS platform, the ISO 19139 metadataStandardName and metadataStandardVersion elements are added at that time.

Content that can't or shouldn't be edited

For most items, ArcGIS automatically records the item's intrinsic properties in its metadata as appropriate. For example, if an item's spatial reference is set, full details of that spatial reference are recorded in its metadata. Detailed spatial reference properties can't be edited manually in the metadata view. This ensures the metadata reflects the item's actual spatial reference. With other metadata styles, you can manually provide information about an item's spatial reference for items that don't support synchronization, but you can only do so by providing the spatial reference identifier. The properties of the spatial reference are fixed for that identifier, and they can be examined in the appropriate registry where they're defined; individual spatial reference parameters are not manually typed into an item's metadata.

For other properties, such as an item's feature count, raster size, or attribute labels, it's possible to change the information derived from the item when editing metadata in ArcGIS. However, these values should be left unaltered. As long as these values aren't edited in the metadata view, ArcGIS will continue to update them as the item's properties change and they'll remain accurate. For example, if attributes are provided in an item's metadata but their names don't match field names in the item's attribute table, they'll be removed from the item's metadata the next time it's synchronized with the item's intrinsic properties.

The ArcGIS metadata editor automatically provides the current date as the date when the metadata was last updated, and the appropriate character set value describing how metadata created by ArcGIS is encoded. These values typically should not be modified. However, if you're transcribing metadata that describes an archived item, for example, you may want to change the metadata date to reflect the date when the metadata content was originally authored.

Export metadata to the ISO 19139 XML format

If you need to provide information about an item to people or organizations outside the ArcGIS platform, you can export the item's metadata to a stand-alone metadata file in the ISO 19139 XML format. When ArcGIS Pro is set to use the INSPIRE Metadata Directive style, the item's metadata is exported by default to the INSPIRE version of the ISO 19139 XML format.

  1. On the Home tab on the ribbon, in the Metadata group, click Export Export.

    The Export Metadata dialog box appears.

  2. Click The metadata content to export drop-down list and click the amount of content to filter out of the item's metadata during the export process.
    • All Supported Content—The item's metadata is not filtered.
    • Without Machine Names—The item's metadata content is filtered to remove any machine names that may exist. Appropriate actions are taken depending on the context in which the machine name is found. The metadata element will be removed if it doesn't cause the document to be invalid, the machine name will be removed from the beginning of a UNC path, or the value will be changed to identify the location as being withheld.
    • Without Sensitive Information—Machine names are filtered as described above. Additionally, local and network file paths, and internet locations other than http or https addresses are removed in the same manner. Operating system information, database information, and geoprocessing history are also removed.
  3. Confirm that Current style (INSPIRE) is selected in the The type of metadata to export drop-down list.
  4. Browse to or type the location and name of the XML file that will be created in the Export metadata to text box.
  5. Click OK.

    The filtered ArcGIS metadata elements are matched to the appropriate ISO 19139 metadata elements with the modifications required by the INSPIRE profile, and their content is transferred to an ISO 19139-format XML file. ArcGIS metadata includes content that's not included in the ISO 19139 standard, such as thumbnails and descriptions of the fields in an attribute table; this content can't be included in an ISO 19139-format XML file.

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