Acquisition of relevant and useful data for hydrological, meteorological or hydrogeological assessments and research projects in New Zealand’s regions is primarily based on personal communication and reliance on the knowledge of domain specialists (White 2006; William, Milke et al. 2009). To support the task of identification and subsequently retrieval of available datasets for an area of interest, a new unified method for metadata and data search in New Zealand to discover hydro-climate and geo-scientific datasets is presented. The method is implemented within an online accessible search website which searches the many distributed New Zealand based data providers and web portals of scientific and governmental organisations (Klug and Kmoch 2014).

The work undertaken comprises of two parts. First, the publicly accessible abstracts from the website of the Journal of Hydrology New Zealand (NZHS2014) were analysed. The title, date, authors and abstract text were indexed and where possible a spatial context was derived. Additional keywords were selected for a thesaurus based on occurrence of domain specific terms in the abstract text. Subsequently, metadata records in the New Zealand metadata standard format are created and provided online.

Secondly, the web search algorithm distributes the search to a selection of pre-registered geo- and hydro-climate data portals like “LINZ Data Service”, “”, NIWA EIB, Landcare LRIS, GNS Catalogue, MfE and DoC geoportals.

The search query can employ free-text terms from a thesaurus or glossary and spatial context, like the bounding box of the area of interest.

SMART Data Portal Metadata Search

New Zealand Information Services


Klug, H., & Kmoch, A. (2014). A SMART groundwater portal: An OGC web services orchestration framework for hydrology to improve data access and visualisation in New Zealand. Computers & Geosciences, 69(0), 78–86.

White, P. A. (2006). “Some Future Directions in Hydrology.” Journal of Hydrology (NZ) 45((2)): 63-68.

William, G., M. W. Milke, et al. (2009). “Survey of New Zealand hydrologists on information needs.” Journal of Hydrology (NZ) 48(1): 1-12

Kmoch, A., Klug, H., Ritchie, A. B. H., Schmidt, J., & White, P. A. (2015). A Spatial Data Infrastructure Approach for the Characterization of New Zealand’s Groundwater Systems. Transactions in GIS.