[tdwg-content] Change of DwC terms stateProvince, county, and municipality?

Gregor Hagedorn g.m.hagedorn at gmail.com
Wed Aug 29 07:24:43 CEST 2012

I think the neutral names are of limited value. They require everyone
to understand the intended meaning and it is highly error prone that
different collection manager will read the specifications differently.
In Germany we have states, then a next level (administrative district,
"Regierungsbezirk") hardly anyone outside of the administration would
know which one the own town belongs to. Then we have the "Kreis" which
is roughly equivalent to a county and fairly well recognized by most
people. This has the slight catch that small cities belong to a
county, whereas big cities are "county-free cities" (kreisfreie
Stadt). As a result, one manager would map "Regierungsbezirk" to
second level, others the "Kreis", others will put the "circuit-free
city" in second level, others will leave it empty and put the
county-free city in third, to have all cities in the same field...

One of the big advantages of computers is, in my eyes, that they can
easily handle (at least) simple synonymy. With the advent of the
Semantic Web this promise has become even more realistic.

Providing a set of semantically well defined and well labeled names,
some of which are applicable only to some countries, and leave it to
software and a configuration thereof to figure out which mapping is
most appropriate for which use case, would be my preference over the
mapping pre-defined and just numbered by level in the hierarchy.


More information about the tdwg-content mailing list