An SME's perspective


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Presentation at the INSPIRE Workshop "Concrete steps to implement INSPIRE: synergies between the public and the private sector" - Florence, 24th June 2013

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An SME's perspective

  1. 1. An SME‘s perspective Dr. Christine Giger ( Owner of Giger GeoIT (SME in Switzerland) Member of Management Board of the Swiss Organisation for Geoinformation (EUROGI member) Mandated as Swiss National Contact Point for INSPIRE
  2. 2. SME’s main goals ➞Revenue! ➞Best services for best prices for our costumers! smeSpire Workshop, INSPIRE Conference, Firenze, 2013, Dr. Ch. Giger 2
  3. 3. SME’s main barriers ➞ Costumers are public administrations: – The cheapest wins! – Small enterprises (< 8 staff members) have (nearly) no chances winning public tenders according to WTO GATT rules  not regarded as “stable” enough – National language is important! Barrier for offering services in other countries – Administrations think they can do it easily on their own: • “INSPIRE-readiness” of commercial and FOSS SW is overestimated • Complexity of implementing interoperable and INSPIRE-compliant SDI is underestimated ➞ Universities do not properly educate on INSPIRE/SDI knowledge – Administrations as well as SMEs do not find well-educated staff – Lack of proper post-graduate/professional education in the national language – Education is expensive for small administrations as well as for SMEs! ➞ Large (US) enterprises take the market – E.G. ESRI and Intergraph changed their roles in the recent years: • From pure vendor/SW provider role to “solution-oriented”, also offering consulting and engineering services • Former (European) SME partners (who offered consulting and engineering services) were bought in the last 5 years ➞ Substantial geodata and high-quality metadata is still not available (sometimes due to political issues: data protection) smeSpire Workshop, INSPIRE Conference, Firenze, 2013, Dr. Ch. Giger 3
  4. 4. SME’s opportunities ➞Education (especially short courses) can be part of the business model for an SME ➞Availability of open data ➞Availability of open source SW in main stream IT ➞Participation in open source development projects for public administrations ➞Independent and (SW vendor) neutral consulting ➞Participation in dedicated R&D projects for SMEs ➞Being part of consortia for bigger projects smeSpire Workshop, INSPIRE Conference, Firenze, 2013, Dr. Ch. Giger 4
  5. 5. SME’s wish list ➞ Increase the availability of reliable, well-documented open geodata ➞ Provide more PPPs opportunities with focus on SMEs ➞ Increase opportunities and programmes for R&D for SMEs ➞ Keep specifications for data/metadata/services (as) simple (as possible) in INSPIRE! But: STOP communicating INSPIRE/SDI implementation were simple! ➞ Public funding for SME education/training needed: – Help local SMEs with training material in local languages – Be more aware that SMEs can nicely think globally but they are acting locally! – Be aware that all training/education/research activities are much more expensive for small enterprises than they are for medium/large enterprises smeSpire Workshop, INSPIRE Conference, Firenze, 2013, Dr. Ch. Giger 5