OSGeo Ghent 2013, June 13th


The first Flemish edition of the OSGeo conference explores the theme “Today’s OSGeo market: experiences from users, developers and vendors”. It will be an interesting opportunity to confront different points of view in order to establish the direction OSGeo is/should be heading for. The presentations of the day can be divided into three main blocks:

1) Those that focus on the fundamentals of open source geospatial software, the basic concepts/definitions and goals

2) Presentations that go into user experiences

3) Vendor presentations

During the panel discussion afterwards, all participants (the audience included) will get a chance to discuss pending questions, concerns and give further information.

Finally, all the information gathered during the day, will be distilled into a number of concluding remarks.


Time Schedule 

9:00: Registration and coffee

9:15: Opening session

9:30-11:00: Presentations concerning basic OSGeo concepts and definitions

11:00-11:20: Coffee break

11:20-12:20: User presentations (part 1)

12:20-13:20: Lunch

13:20-14:20: User presentations (part 2)

14:20-15:50: Vendor presentations

15:50-16:10: Coffee break

16:10-16:40: Panel discussion

16:40-17:00: Concluding remarks

17:00: Network reception  



Registration starts at 9:00 am, during which coffee will be provided. The event closes with a reception, providing the participants with ample opportunities to extend their social networks.



OSGeo Gent 2013 is organized by the Geomajas community. 


Registration/ Attendance fee 

Registration is required:

e-mail to


Please mention 'registration OSGeo Ghent' in the subject field. 


Attendance fee:

Early bird registration: until June 6th: free attendance

Registration after June 6th: 35 €

No show (without notification 3 days in advance): 100 € administration costs 



Organising a top conference in combination with a low budget conference fee is a difficult balance to strike. Therefore, we are looking for more sponsors and we appreciate your sponsorship.

Following companies have already contributed: Geosparc, iMinds

e-mail to


Please mention 'sponsorship OSGeo Ghent' in the subject field.

Prices:500 €: Name + Logo in the official program + on the website, + possibility to distribute product datasheet. 



New location due to the large number of participants:

Room Valère Billiet

Building S8

Krijgslaan 281

9000 Gent



Preliminary program (to be completed) 

Chairman: Dirk Frigne

Moderator: Frank Maes


(1) Presentations concerning basic OSGeo concepts and definitions. 


program overview



"Introducing OSGeo.nl, the Dutch Language Chapter of the Open Source Geospatial Foundation"

Just Van Den Broecke - OSGeo.nl - slides


Abstract: This talk will introduce the key players in the Open Source Geospatial arena, in particular "OSGeo", the Open Source Geospatial Foundation. OSGeo is a non-profit organization with a mission to support the collaborative development of open source geospatial software, and promote its widespread use.  Local OSGeo divisions, called "Local Chapters", play an important part in OSGeo. The Dutch Language Local Chapter, OSGeo.nl ("nl" is the ISO language code for Dutch language), has been very active in the past 1.5 year and has recently become an official foundation ("Stichting"). The mission and activitiesof OSGeo.nl and its collaboration with the Dutch OpenStreetMap community will be introduced. We hope to reach out and engage participants of this day in joining OSGeo.nl!

Bio: Just van den Broecke (Amsterdam, The Netherlands, www.justobjects.nl) is an independent Open Source Geo-ICT professional. Free and Open Source has always been 'a way of life' for him. He has contributed to numerous open source geospatial projects such as GeoNetwork, the Heron Mapping Client (www.heron-mc.org) and recently NLExtract, ETL tools for free geospatial datasets within The Netherlands. He attempts to regularly contribute to OpenStreetMap, as a mapper. Just is secretary of OSGeo.nl (www.osgeo.nl), the Dutch Language Local Chapter of the International Open Source Geospatial Foundation (OSGeo.org) and an active member of the Dutch OpenGeoGroep (www.opengeogroep.nl) cooperation. 



"OpenStreetMap: Join the (mapping) party" 

Ben Abelshausen/ Jorieke Vyncke - slides


Abstract: This talk will introduce people into the wonderfull world of crowdsourced open map data. The OSM community believes OpenData and FOSS are a great match. Discover the tools used in the OSM community and how to start mapping. OpenData and OSM can lead to unexpected and creative applications. As a prime example of how FOSS can be used for change, the Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team (HOT) will be introduced and a specific HOT project is discussed based on experiences in Cameroon and the Central African Republic.

Bio Ben Abelshausen holds two master degrees in both informatics/mathematics and computer science. He has been an OpenStreetMap-contributor and enthusiast since 2009. He is the creator of OsmSharp, an opensource project focusing on unleashing the power of OSM for routing and logistical optimisation. He came in contact for the first time with OpenStreetMap when developing a routing application for Deltamedia NV, a company delivering newspapers/magazines. http://www.osmsharp.com http://twitter.com/xivk

Bio Jorieke Vyncke holds two master degrees from the university of Ghent in both social work and conflict & development. She has been an active contributor to OpenStreetMap since 2011. After doing research on mapping and OpenStreetMap in Bangladesh, she was deployed for the Humanitarian OpenStreetMap Team (HOT) in the Central African Republic and Cameroon. She has gained experience both in the usage of OSGeo and OpenStreetMap tools.  




"Open Source GIS in data analysis and research"

Johan Van de Wauw - slides


Abstract: From modelling traffic jams, environmental pollution to climate change, many research problems have a spatial dimension. Different succesful open source projects (R, SAGA, GRASS) for visualising and analysing these data have emerged and much of their functionality can now be accessed in easy-to-use interfaces in desktop application and through web services. A short overview of the different packages will be given together with some examples of how these packages can also be useful for solving some frequently occurring problems.

Bio: Johan Van de Wauw defended his PhD in Geology last year. For his research on spatial prediction of water table dynamics he used and developed open source software. Johan became a contributor to different open source GIS projects: Saga GIS, debian/ubuntu GIS and the Osgeo live dvd. He works as GIS consultant at RealDolmen.


(2) User presentations: (sharing user experiences with Open Source GIS solutions) 


program overview



"Testimonial and demonstration of the MAGDA Geo Open Source Web Gis platform." 

Lieven Raes (Corve) - slides


Abstract: This presentation will introduce you to the concepts behind the MAGDA Geo Open Source WEB GIS platform. This Geomajas-based platform supports government agencies to use their own geo-data combined with regional and international geo-data so they can make them available in their own organization and to the public. MAGDA Geo works as a SAAS model (Software as a service) and gives our partners an advanced solution to set up their own thematical maps. Today the platform hosts about 10 applications and more than 80, mostly web-service based, layers. A brief demo will give you an idea about how the platform works.

Bio: Lieven Raes (Ghent, Belgium) holds two degrees from the Ghent University in administrative sciences and land use planning. Lieven works for the Flemish eGovernment Coordination unit since 2005. Lieven was first involved in mobility and traffic planning and now for almost 10 years in eGovernment. Lieven set up a program that supported more than 25 e-government projects like the electronic study grants, electronic delivery of public transport cards and several GIS projects like the MAGDA Geo platform. In the last two years, Lieven is working on the MAGDA Geo platform for the Flemish region and the electronic building permit. 



"Open Source GIS software stack for INSPIRE facilities and spatial plans"

Herman Assink - slides


Abstract: The central INSPIRE infrastructure of the Dutch provinces is completely based on open source software. The presentation will discuss the different components of this infrastructure (harvesting, validation, transformation, database, INSPIRE services, application management, and others) and which open source packages are being used. The reasons for choosing specific open source solutions will be explained as well. In addition, the motivation of Dutch provinces will be discussed for choosing open source for INSPIRE. The second example of a large GIS application based on open source is RO-Online, the national portal for publishing governmental spatial plans to the public. Verdict: open source GIS is mature and ready-to-use for large, complex applications.

Bio: Herman Assink has a Bachelor degree in Land and Water Use and a bachelor degree in GIS (UNIGIS). He worked on GIS for more than 25 years. First as a GIS consultant at the Dutch Government Service for rural affairs. Later, since 1998, he became director and consultant at his own company IDgis (www.idgis.nl), which provides consultancy and software development services in the field of GIS. Most of the services are based on and produce open source software. Herman is member of the project steering committee of deegree, i.e. open source software for spatial data infrastructures and the geospatial web.   



"The current status of Open Data in Flanders "

Pieter Colpaert - slides


Abstract: Flanders has been taking steps towards a PSI and even an Open Data policy. Today, the day before the Open Data Day Flanders, this talk will give an overview of the current status of Open Data in Flanders, and will discuss unresolved issues.

Bio: Pieter Colpaert is a researcher in linked open data and chairman of the Belgium chapter of the Open Knowledge Foundation. He believes a lot of frustration today is caused by data not being accessible (when does my train leave, how long do I have to queue, where does my money go, and so on). His goal is to increase your life quality by contextualizing data into information without you even noticing it.



"Databank Ondergrond Vlaanderen – concepts and role in the SDI in Flanders and Europe "

 Marleen Van Damme - slides


Abstract: Databank Ondergrond Vlaanderen is the “one-stop shop” in Flanders for soil and subsoil data built via the cooperation of different partners within the Flemish government. Based on a long term vision developed in 2009 and technical analyses in line with that vision, DOV started a migration project in order to renew all existing components and modules.

However, faced with the INSPIRE-deadline of May 2011 and being partner in the eContent-plus project GS Soil DOV focused first at the publication environment. DOV chose, after evaluation of different options, to set up the INSPIRE network services based on Geonetwork and Geoserver (almost 150 layers available now).

Currently a migration of the internal environment is underway to replace at the end all existing tools. At the same time we are introducing new applications according to legislation that came into force (VLAREM rubriek 55.1, VLAREL). Powerful ETL tools are being used to synchronize the old environment with the new one as we are migrating, but these ETL tools also provide the GIS data for out INPIRE publication environment.

In line with the IT strategy of the DOV partners, the new architecture will be built on Open Source products, such as Java, GWT, OpenLayers, Geomajas and GeoTools, although the ESRI stack still has its place. Different applications, released or under construction, will be shown during the presentation. The complexity of the project management and the choice made to work Agile, supported by a different tools will be presented.

Bio: Marleen Van Damme holds a degree of civil engineer and is working at the Environment, Nature and Energy Department (LNE) of the Flemish government. She is the coordinator of the DOV cooperation since 2006 in which LNE, MOW and VMM are partners. The cooperation started already in 1996, Marleen was involved from the beginning. Marleen is also coordinating the MercatorNet cooperation within the Flemish government between LNE, MOW, RWO and DAR and is member of the GDI-Vlaanderen Steering committee.



(3) Vendor presentations: (a presentation of the economic landscape: who's who, how does OS business work,...) 


program overview



"Implementing INSPIRE with deegree OSS - the success story"

Sebastian Goerke - slides


Abstract: this 30 min. presentation will cover how INSPIRE is realized by the deegree webservices open source software. And the presentation will give some examples of recent projects using deegree to set up INSPIRE and OGC compliant solutions.

Bio: Sebastian Goerke, is working for lat/lon as a consultant since 2009. Sebastian is representing lat/lon at the OGC as a principal member and is highly involved in the OGC's CITE project. Furthermore Sebastian is working on numerous projects where the deegree OSS is used to build INSPIRE compliant solutions.  



"Open source software and technology evolution in GIS"

Karel Maesen - slides


Abstract: This talk will focus on how open source software is changing the GIS technology space by accelerating technologic evolution, offering a counterbalance to the big GIS vendors, and promoting diversity of opinion on where GIS technology should move next. We will also discuss reasons for open-sourcing software, how to engage with or support open source software projects, and the opportunities and problems of open source projects.

Bio: Karel Maesen is an independent software developer. He is currently working as chief software architect and agile coach for the Flemish Roads and Traffic Agency (AWV). As a side project he created, together with his friends at Qmino BVBA, the web-based mapping tool http://www.gemeentekaart.be/. His main contributions to open source are Hibernate Spatial (a spatial extension to the popular Hibernate persistence framework for Java) and the Geolatte collection of modular GIS components for Java.  



"Supporting ECW and JPEG2000 formats in Opensource geospatial products"

Emmanuel Mondon (Intergraph) - slides


Abstract: Intergraph has recently released the latest ECW JPEG2000 v5 SDK that contains significant improvements and enhancements for these geospatial wavelet formats. As part of the development effort, major improvements were made to the existing GDAL drivers to make it faster, more robust and easier for third-party open source applications to take advantage of. This presentation will cover the improvements, licensing questions and platforms supported to ensure robust support in OSGeo software products moving forward.

BioEmmanuel Mondon has an engineer degree in land surveying (ESGT France). He worked on geospatial for more than 15 years. First as project manager at IGN France International, subsidiary of the French National Institute of Geographic and Forest Information (IGN) then as sales manager at EADS Fleximage, a subsidiary of EADS dedicated to remote sensing for defence & intelligence. Later, since 2006, he joined the Belgian company IONIC Software which was acquired by Hexagon (www.hexagon.com) and merged into ERDAS then Intergraph. Since 1st of January 2012, Emmanuel is GeoSpatial Sales Manager of Intergraph Security, Government & Infrastructure (SG&I) for Belgium, Luxemburg, France and French Speaking Africa. Emmanuel has promoted OGC in Europe and is co-chairing the OGC Business Value Committee (BVC – see http://www.opengeospatial.org/projects/groups/businessvalue).


(4) Panel discussion


program overview


Answering questions from the audience/participants.

(Audience participation, questions, concerns, practical information, ...) 




(5) Conclusions 


Summary of the day, by Dirk Frigne 




(6) Network reception