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GeoNetwork provides Internet access to interactive maps, satellite imagery and related spatial databases.
It's purpose is to improve access to and integrated use of spatial data and information.

GeoNetwork promotes and enhances multidisciplinary approaches to sustainable development and supports decision making in agriculture, forestry, fisheries and food security.

GeoNetwork allows to easily share spatial data among different FAO Units, other UN Agencies, NGO's and other institutions.

GeoNetwork, which is under active further development (contact:, can be accessed at

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Spatial Standard and Norms

FAO is establishing GIS guidelines and spatial standards and norms for internal use in order to rationalize, harmonize and advance its GIS and cartographic activities and to support GeoNetwork.
At the same time several base maps are being developed with a number of partners for internal and external use.

The contacts for the main activities are:

  • GIS guidelines and the standards to be used in FAO's interdisciplinary spatial database
    (contact: GIS-Manager@fao.orgs).
  • International Boundaries and Coast Lines map.
    For more information on the online version of this database click here
    (FAO is preparing a polygon version of it, which should be available by June 2003)
  • Subnational Administrative Boundaries

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The Global Sub national Land Use Database

FAO, IFPRI and SAGE set up in early 2002, an informal collaborative consortium, Agri-MAPS, aimed at compiling a consistent global spatial database based on selected sub-national agricultural statistics.
Coordination of FAO's contribution to Agri-MAPS has been facilitated by the Task Force on 'Sub-national land use information' of the SPATL-PAIA (contact:

Agri-MAPS outputs are:

  • A global spatial dataset of statistics on crop production, area harvested and yield, aggregated at the second administrative sub-division level, where available.
  • Demonstration studies, highlighting the utility of the Agri-MAPS data in several thematic areas, viz, land degradation, early warning, food security, farming systems studies, nutrient balance and climate change.
  • Specialized database query tools; interactive web sites for display of maps of major crops and to facilitate information exchange.

Agri-MAPS (Mapping of Agricultural Production Systems) can be accessed at
see also

The Strategic Framework for FAO
Medium Term Plan