Researcher :

Sébastien Storme
Promotor : CEESE-ULB
Partner : ISRO/GfG - KULeuven

Description :

Project funded by the OSTC (Sustainable Mobility PADD 1)

Summary :

The project develops a Sustainable Mobility Information System (SMIS) using 'freeware' Internet technologies and aims to help all potential users in finding datas related to the transport sector and the sustainable mobility in Belgium.

The SMIS project updates the MITM (Meta-information System on Transport and Mobility) taking the Metadatabase on Sustainable Development (funded by the OSTC) and the major national and international metadata standards (DIF, FGDC, GDDD, ISO, IAFA, WWW-Dublin core, EEA-CDS, ...) into account.

Tools to improve the presentation of the system have been progressively developed. In particular, the home page of the WWW has been adapted, more attractive functionalities have been added according to latest tools available on the Internet, including tools for textual search and search on the whole Internet, geografical and graphic tools, and including direct access to data producers, data samples and data as such. The use of aggregated and preview data has also been envisaged.

A permanent information system has been progressively build up. Search for compatibility and co-operation with other suitable related systems has had the priority. The SMIS has been build up as a part of a greater information system on sustainability, what implies the convergence of metadata standards and the interconnection of different directories covering many levels and subjects. First steps have been conceived with a maximum of flexibility in order to facilitate the development towards standards in progress, without neglecting immediate needs of the users. A help desk for search and data transfer is also part of the project, of which aims consist of helping researchers at short term and identifying the most demanded types and formats of data and possible needs for automatic data transfers.

Existing metadata related to transport and mobility have first been collected and presented substancially in a user-friendly way. Databases and other suitable information sources have then been identified and described more in details (e.g. : quality, resolution, etc.). Later, experts and respresentatives of specific user groups have indexed or selected data sources following criteria related to their expertise domain. A first paper and floppy edition has been published on the basis of this choice, what enables in return the identification of new quality data sources.


The general aim of the SMIS is to guide potential users towards information and data related to sustainable transport modes and mobility in Belgium.

In particular, it will help researchers and managers in sustainable mobility finding suitable data sources they need for their job. The SMIS should be a tool to make a first identification and choice of interesting metadatabases and data sources like institutions, experts, documents and measurements.

It will also help data providers introducing the existance and the availability of their results. It will thus help identifying lacks in research or knowledge needed to implement sustainable transport policies too.

Un autre objectif est d'acquérir une expérience sur les besoins des utilisateurs en relation avec l'offre de données en terme d'indicateurs et de données de base, mais aussi en terme de formats et de nomenclatures de données. Cette expérience sera utile pour la définition du système et de ses outils, pour l'identification des données encore nécessaires, et pour recommander la normalisation des méthodologies, nomenclatures et formats d'échange. Un objectif scientifique du SIMS est aussi de démontrer pratiquement qu'une interconnection étroite entre les politiques, les disciplines et les acteurs sera un élément déterminant du développement durable. Un système de meta-informations standardisé croisant les différentes disciplines impliquées dans la mobilité soutenable (économique, institutionnelles, sociologique, environnementale) est un premier pas vers la construction des indispensables ponts entre des disciplines et acteurs habituellement séparés (chercheurs, administrateurs, public). C'est sur ce point que le défi technologique du SIMS est important.

Available documents :

Download a complete version of the proposal (MS-Word for Windows, 180 Kb)

Sustainable Mobility Information System (SMIS) : A tool for decision-making. JM ROTTIERS*, K. MAESEN**, F. MEURIS**, L. ALBRECHTS***, W. HECQ* - 1998, (* CEESE, Université Libre de Bruxelles Belgium; ** GfG, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven Belgium;*** ISRO, Katholieke Universiteit Leuven Belgium). Presented at the ISEE conference in Santiago Chile, 15-19 November 1998.
English pdf version , French pdf version.


End : March 1997


Sustainable MobilityInformation System (SMIS)