Strategic planning of agricultural land information systems in South Africa
Makhwaje, Ernest N.
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The planning processes involved in the design and development of strategic land information systems in a semantic context require a logical approach. An array of efficacy problems associated with the relevance of the information required and the data to be provided must be dealt with in terms of this logical approach so that wise decisions can be made about future land resource use options. This study applies the aforementioned statement to strategic decision-making regarding information management in the provision of accurate and relevant information about the characteristics of the land resource for use by both the public and private sectors in South Africa. With ever evolving human needs that increase pressure on the limited land resource, the need for accurate and relevant information for strategic purposes is increasing. However, even at the present time, land information systems design and development is characterised by a technical design orientation and a narrow cost-efficiency focus, with a lack of strategic envisioning. Strategic decisions require effective choices regarding what data should be collected and how this should be stored and processed to support landresource- use decisions in the future. Information systems can, however, not cater for too many variables due to cost implications. Hence, strategic choices in generating only the required information and data for storage and processing become necessary.