Defining Fitness-for-Use for Crowdsourced Points of Interest (POI)

Due to the advent of Volunteered Geographic Information (VGI), large datasets of user-generated Points of Interest (POI) are now available. As with all VGI, however, there is uncertainty concerning data quality and fitness-for-use. Currently, the task of evaluating fitness-for-use of POI is left to the data user, with no guidance framework being available which is why the research published in a recent paper proposes a generic approach to choose appropriate measures for assessing fitness-for-use of crowdsourced POI for different tasks.

POI are related to the higher-level concept of geo-atoms in order to identify and distinguish their two basic functions, geo-referencing and object-referencing. Then, for each of these functions, suitable measures of positional and thematic quality are developed based on existing quality indicators.

Typical use cases of POI are evaluated with regards to their use of the two basic functions of POI, and allocated appropriate measures for fitness-for-use. The general procedure is illustrated on a brief practical example using data from Facebook and Factual.

This research addresses the issue of fitness-for-use of POI on a higher conceptual level by relating it to more fundamental notions of geographical information representation. The results are expected to assist users of crowdsourced POI datasets in determining an appropriate method to evaluate fitness-for-use.

Jonietz, D., Zipf, A. (2016): Defining fitness-for-use for crowdsourced points of interest (POI). ISPRS Internat. Journal of Geo-Information. 2016. 5 (9), 149; doi:10.3390/ijgi5090149