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Geographic Referencing Infrastructure (GRI)

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) has implemented its own internal corporate Geography Information System that provides the geographic referencing framework to support world-class statistics.

The GRI was funded by the Neighbourhood Statistics (NeSS) Programme to provide the single source of geographic information (GI), metadata and tools it needed to underpin its systems.

GRI components
GRI components

The GRI comprises three parts.
1. The Spatial Data Repository (SDR) - a 'back-office' system that allows ONS Geography staff to import and maintain geographic data in, and create products from, a single corporate database;

2. The Product Library - a database that contains more than 1,000 high quality products and supporting metadata available to everyone in ONS:

  • Postcodes and addresses

  • Digital boundaries for a huge range of geographies

  • Background mapping

  • Reference maps

  • Aerial Photography

  • Standard names and codes for geographic areas

3. A set of new tools, available to all ONS staff, including:

  • the GRI Explorer - a browsing tool that allows you to navigate through the datasets, and view and query them on screen

  • the GRI Geo-Referencing tool - a matching tool to allow you to link GRI data to your own datasets

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