An Initial Analysis of the Potential Geospatial Economic Opportunity (2018)


The geospatial data landscape is changing. Increasing amounts of geospatial data, coupled with a better understanding of how it can be used, present opportunities to drive economic growth. This work has examined the issue through two lenses – the potential to create value from known private sector and public sector use cases and the potential to enable an innovative geospatial ecosystem that unlocks further growth.

Geographical scope

United Kingdom

Non-quantified impacts

Better use of geospatial data in the public sector (for example through better routing of Emergency Services) will create additional economic and social value, though this has not yet been sized. Beyond the use cases considered in the study, enabling a more innovative geospatial data ecosystem could unlock substantial value, though the exact size is harder to quantify. This initial analysis suggests there is very significant opportunity to generate economic growth from geospatial data.

Quantifiable impacts

Analysis of private sector use cases suggests government could unlock up to GBP 6-11 billion per year of economic value.

(i) Sales and Marketing – better adoption of geospatial data for location-based advertising, optimising retail footprints and end-to-end supply chains could realise GBP 1.1 – 2.2 billion.

(ii) Property and land – geospatial data used to support e-conveyancing, provide greater value transparency, location aware insurance and digital surveying and could realise GBP 1.5 – 2.5 billion.

(iii) Infrastructure and construction – geospatial data used to support optimal route locations for new pipelines, generators or power lines or signal towers to reduce planning times and maximise return on investment, with an added value of between GBP 2.2 – GBP 4.6 billion.

(iv) Mobility – Route optimisation using geospatial data, along with the use of unmanned drones could realise between GBP 1.0 – 1.9 billion.

(v) Natural resources – using geospatial data to support farming/automating farming equipment, precision agriculture, autonomous mining and exploration and remote monitoring could realise between GBP 0.2 – GBP 0.3 billion.

Value for private sector use cases



Study type

Economic estimation from existing studies plus expert opinion

Economy sector

Water, Infrastructure (Transport), Infrastructure (Energy), Retail, Agriculture