What will land administration look like in the future? - vision of Cadastre 2034

Proposing what land administration could look like in 2034 does not seem like an easy idea, if we see how many changes have happened in the last 20 years. However, the exercise is a second attempt at what was done 20 years before Cadastre 2014. Having paid little attention to these statements may have cost someone, an institution, or even an entire nation.

To think that in 2034 the cadastre will be prepared and updated by citizens on a voluntary basis sounds profane. But that's what the cartography update sounded like before we knew OpenStreet Map, which is putting into question whether a cartographic institute should exist or if we use this resource to promote collaborative mapping among students and we only dedicate ourselves to normative actions, and Updating of unavoidable baseline inputs such as a consistent terrain model and more regularly updated satellite images.

Visions of Cadastre in a future of 20 years

The conceptual changes in Cadastre tend to be more complex, since its uses are more strict than the cartography of other scales. Its link to the legal, fiscal, and economic aspects create an interdependence not only in terms of information but also processes. However, just as the cartography could be dying at its best period of gloryAs technology is democratized and demands for real-time information are created, the rigor of precision, the professional's signature and the flow of the methodology run the risk of not meeting the requirement of an irreversible demand. As an example, let's review how many encyclopedias that we recently bought for our children they are using to do their daily chores; o how many students stay in the school library to finish their assignments; Despite the academic questions that wikipedia has, its usability, collaborative updating and compatibility with the Google search engine, it is sending entire libraries to museums.

Another aspect to consider in the cadastre issue is the fact that the contextual conditions between countries are not equal in terms of priority. For European countries that already have 100% coverage of their property base at the national level and a standardized civil service career, modeling in three and four dimensions is urgent. Completely opposite situation in countries whose 2D coverage is still incomplete, the complete assumption is outdated and above all where political changes lead to the dismissal of an entire team of Professionals experienced, who could lose their professionalism when carrying information on hard drives and -that does not cause us to laugh- to become part of a fire in the mayor's office that, among other interests, seeks to erase traces of corruption.

A vision of land registry 20 years in the future does not pretend to be a bet based on cabal or approaches against what exists. Rather, it is an exercise based on the common sense of good practices already in use and the tendencies of which experts detect irreversible routes. But we must not rule out that the proposed trends could lead to the adoption of shortcuts; as is the case in many contexts in Africa where citizens went from not knowing wired telephony to next-generation mobile telephony. That is the reason why models like Cadastre fit-for-purpose they are being included in the discourses of disruptive evangelization in this matter; by the existing demand of millions of properties that must be titled and the acceptance of a citizen in a mountain that prefers a title with a measure «more or less accurate»But where there are agreed boundaries with its neighbors; Instead of having nothing and waiting for another politician to offer something palpable.

A statement to 20 years in the hands of a - visionary fool - can make conceptualize a National System of Property Management, open to public consultation, with concepts of rights, restrictions and responsibilities before these come to be considered as a standard; -That crazy- with regulatory advocacy capabilities and some tyranny is capable of erasing conventional methods if they do not guarantee efficiency in time, costs, traceability and transparency. By the time proponents of conventional methods have a chance to react, it will have converted the formal advertisement (certificate of tradition and freedom) into a real property checking account like the access now offered by banks, and it will be thinking of getting out of the way. the intermediaries of the transaction through an Ali-express window for traceability in real time.

But hey, while you identify such a madman in your country, I return to what was said in the first paragraph of this letter, that the 2034 Cadastre declarations are a second exercise of what was 2014 Cadastre, which I want to start talking about.

Before Cadastre 2014

The Cadastre is relatively new, compared to the Property Registry, which is based on codes that have been consolidated for many centuries on a basis of registry principles that transcend real, movable, commercial or intellectual law. The homologation of Cadastral purposes arrived late with changes of contextualized paradigms to the meaning of the land for the human being: conquests, wars, tributes, industrialization, computerization; additionally, the waves of evolution of economic models have brought information management techniques and improvement of the operation into a sensation that came to us as puzzle pieces.

The infographic summarizes the great paradigms that the Cadastre has had, in different epochs:

  • Paradigm of the appraisal and the tax on land, with a priority of the land as a wealth inherited from feudalism. It is not surprising that this approach has lasted so long in Latin America, considering that even after the independence of these countries from Spain, the economic model continued to be the adaptation of feudalism that came with colonization. In the infographic this is the first piece of the puzzle, the fiscal cadastre as a basic application.
  • Paradigm of the land market, with an evolution of comfort as the meaning of the earth. This came with the industrial revolution between 1800 and 1950. Many of the classical foundations of land continue to be based on that paradigm of the land market, hence the piece provided at that time was the legal cadastre as a complementary application to the fiscal aspect.
  • Paradigm of land administration, with a vision of the land as a resource. This came about with the new visions of postwar reconstruction, just when many public institutions had interesting renovations, including Cadastre and Registry. These were important years for the Book-based Registry, moving to media such as microfilming, and in the case of Cadastre, the influence of international resources supported the modernization of cadastral techniques, especially with national security interests associated with the cold war. As a result, the economic cadastre piece modernizes appraisal mechanisms that range from simplified models in Anglo-Saxon contexts to complex models based on replacement cost and depreciation curves that they persist until these days in many Latin American countries.
  • Paradigm of sustainable development, with land as a limited common resource. This was born with the information revolution, at the beginning of the 80s, where the possibility of digital tools could replace the map and the digital file, assuming consultations and interrelation with other interested parties in cadastral information. In the same way, the interest in an integration between Cadastre and Registry beyond collaboration and data exchange, simplification towards the citizen through the integration of processes.  The latter went from perversions that had to be collected all in sheet-size tokens «borges»To ideas of putting a cable between Cadastre and Registry so that they were connected. Understanding that multipurpose is in the integrality of the land administration value chain and not in the capture phase has been painful until today; to the detriment of the citizen who expects better services.

Land Registry 2014

In this last context, Cadastre 2014 was born. In the mid-nineties the International Federation of Geometricians (FIG) made one of its best bets to revitalize its role, supporting the initiative that considered how the Cadastre should be within the next 20 years. This leads us to consider the best practices and trends that were being applied worldwide, for land administration; with a projection of how the Cadastre could be in 2014.

From this appeared a document with a philosophical foundation that for many today might seem too obvious, however we are talking about 1994, the time when the initiative began and was published in 1998. For 1994 Windows 95 was hardly a promise, we used Windows 3.11 for groups AutoCAD R13 of that simulation of windows that did not like so much before the habit of dark screen of the R12, Microstation SE on a classic Clipper Ustation running on exuberant but expensive Intergraph equipment; Free software was a nerd fallacy and the Internet worked from so-called portals such as Yahoo, Lycos, Excite and Altavista that had to be accessed from an Internet cafe or with the screeching of a modem connected to the landline phone.

To avoid the risk of appearing proposals from a crystal ball, the exercise had to be based on the best existing practices and with visionary approaches to where the cadastral issue would evolve in terms of processes, tools, scope and linkage of actors linked to the territory.

The 6 2014 Cadastre declarations.

1. Complete situation of the territory including public law and restrictions

This approach led the conventional Cadastre to stop seeing only a specific part of reality, under a biased logic such as only registering the formality or being prioritized over the fiscal. This implies that the cadastre centers its role on "the facts", with the photograph of how things are in the territory, seeking to keep updated information on formality and informality. Additionally, the concept of completeness, so that spatial objects that are between the boundaries of the properties, such as streets, river beds, beaches, etc. they can be modeled in the same logic as a property on a continuous reality, avoiding that in the future the properties continue to request remedies that enter areas of public use.

Another scope of this statement is the linking of non-property data, which affect the domain, use, occupation or disposition of the properties. It implies that a spatial data infrastructure that provides services with data such as protected areas, risk zones, land use plans, etc., include rules so that the spatial relationships with the properties are reflected as effects that are visible in formal advertising or material at the time that an official must make a qualification or grant a license. In the ISO-19152 standard, this declaration simplifies the relations of the interested parties on the reality of the territory in the second two relations of the acronym RRR (Rights, Restrictions, Responsibilities) and these "non-property" data are called legal territorial objects.

Just along the same lines, the other 5 statements were raised in that 2014 Cadastre document promoted by the FIG in 1998. The template example shown on the right has the logic of an administrative folio-type file of the Cadastre, with master data management on the realities that could differ between the institutions that have historically taken that data from different perspectives, guaranteeing interoperability and legal independence with a logic of master data management to strengthen the principle of legitimation:

  • A unique national number generated in 36 base nomenclature,
  • Their physical characteristics coming from the Cadastre, their legal characteristics coming from the formality / informality and alerts of irregularity, their normative characteristics and the interested parties.
  • The alerts of procedures presented (filed) in different mission processes but that have not received resolution or withdrawal.
  • Consistency alerts, for differences between physical and legal realities.

Below is the result of the LADM essence, such as:

  • The extract of procedures based on actors integrated into the transaction process and which are of interest for reasons of priority of related procedures or for simple transparency before the citizen who is interested in acquiring a good.
  • The results of the relations of law (recognized in a formal-inscribed way and also the non-formalized), with the possibility of seeing the tract of previous traditions, which appear as inactive but visible states.
  • The results of the spatial effects of restriction / liability type.

If that data comes from the missionary systems of Cadastre, Registry, Regularization or Special Regime Registry, everyone can dedicate themselves to optimizing their missionary reason and the citizen or user of a procedure can trust that this data is the last truth. From the Legal reality tab, a similar display of the real folio logic could be had with variants such as liens, mortgages or links to other registries such as Commercial, Intellectual, Security, and in the same way, if the administrative reality were consulted, the objects would be seen territorial legal entities that also have interested parties in the affectation / restriction that causes the property of interest. At the level of government institutions, this complete data should be visible without restrictions, if policies focused on transactional efficiency and the breaking of chiefdoms between public institutions and the actors immediate to the citizen such as the notary, municipality, urban curator or surveyor are approved. Defining what of this can be in open access to the citizen is just a matter of transparency and profitability policies, since what is at the top (Master data) could be free, with the rest in a blurred version and a shopping cart that makes it easy to generate an immediate certificate with the complete data.

2. No separation between maps and records

This statement is more than obvious, although for 1994 it was a dream, considering that the best known attempts saw a CAD stuck with a hyperlink to a record of the space base, and among the worst the shapefile where fields could not be created teachers for many to many relationships, such as lots with multiple owners or owners with multiple lots; consequently the name of an owner had to be repeated in as many records as it would appear in the territory ... without going into details of the implicit limitations with just 16 bits.

Undoubtedly, this statement set interesting guidelines on the geospatial theme applied to land administration. Although it is worth remembering that the initial idea was to refer to "null separation between Cadastre data and Property Registry data" and not just "map - cadastral file".

This also gives weight to the interoperability and standardization of geographic data from other legislations that, as "legal territorial objects" affect the use, domain or occupation of the properties; arriving the classic logic of databases that expose services to spatial data infrastructures with policies and rules of interoperability between models. Perhaps a winning issue in this was the maturity of OGC standards pushed down by free software and grudgingly accepted by proprietary software.

3. The modeling will replace the cadastral maps

The best exercise of this was materialized in the ISO-19152 standard, in order to consider the simplicity of the relations (RRR) between the classes that constitute the physical reality (People, topography), the modeled reality (Administrative unit, spatial unit) and sources of information recording (Source).

It sounds easy to say, and the graph to the right appears to be simple. Although bringing that to an ISO for implementation made it more complex than what was expected in the initial need. The first effort called Core Cadastre Domain Model (CCDM), which was later called LADM, ended up becoming an ISO in 2012.

And in case some think that an ISO might be unnecessary, those of us who read Cadastre 2014 in those early years know that a semantic regulation was necessary -and still continues to be a challenge-. The first readings generated confusion from the headlines and terms, especially for those who are legal practitioners of semantics and who prefer to question rather than contextualize by writing a glossary. As an example, the word "cadastre - cadastre" was not considered to be translated because for contexts like Holland, the Cadastre is the Registry; when they bring it to the standard they call it "land administration" which then sounds attractive to Spanish as "land administration"; Before it seems that only the surface and not all its relationships, Aenor translates it as "Territory Administration", which in many countries is a trite and flawed term associated with institutional management. Other examples are the term "parcel" which for Anglo-Saxons is real estate but which in the Spanish-speaking context tends to be discriminatory to rural areas and does not include improvements as indicated by civil codes.

This is exactly what ISO-19152 seeks, to standardize the semantics of the "domain". Although it lacks a practical document that establishes its philosophy and guides its implementation; Given that UML models are not easy to sell to decision makers who expect final results for the citizen.

Here it is convenient to clarify that correlation and difference between LADM and ISO-19152.

The LADM is born from a worldwide vision, about practices and trends 20 years in the future in the Land Administration.  The LADM is in a certain way a philosophy.

The ISO 19152 standard results from a worldwide socialization, to standardize the semantics of the Land Administration.  The ISO is a standard to apply the LADM philosophy.

On this adoption issue there is a need to write, more than a focus on UML models and adoption of technological optics for articles and presentations at events; It would be interesting to make a greater effort on adoption results at the process level, the systematization of experiences and good practices that facilitate the sale at the decision-makers level. For this case, there are examples such as Honduras, which adopted almost the entire LADM philosophy in its SURE-SINAP system, and without having embedded it in public policy, by the simple fact of being based on the CCDM since 2005 has allowed it a interesting continuity despite the instability that this country has experienced in the last 15 years; or cases like Nicaragua that without showing the implementation of the standard head-on, the entire SIICAR inference engine implies the adoption of almost a level 2 compliance with the standard.

4. The cadastre in physical formats will be a thing of the past

As a consequence of this modeling and the rethinking of physical formats, proposals arise that impact aspects such as the cadastral nomenclature. In ancient times, cadastral keys were sequences of up to 30 digits, where geographic identifiers and administrative characteristics were mixed; While it was romantic for users within the institution, for the end user they were cumbersome and of little use if most of those digits were zero. As an example, these nomenclatures included whether the property was rural; if this happened to be considered urban its identity practically changed because the composite number was not the same. Much of that logic came from the management of physical formats, as we remember that initially the urban-rural concept was associated with print sizes of the final maps, which for populated areas required scales 1: 1,000 while for rural areas scales 1: 5,000 or 1: 10,000.

Thinking in digital formats leads to breaking with these schemes, thinking about what adds value for the citizen who needs an easy number and modeling where a property must continue to maintain its identity despite changing municipality due to modification of the inter-municipal boundary, despite change its formal-informal situation, despite changing its urban-rural characterization. Not that these fields are no longer necessary, but if they are in attribute tables, they can be changed at any time without the object changing its identity; Unless, of course, the change implies modification of its geometry.

Also with this arise more efficient identification methods, such as those used in systems such as passports, procedures, vehicle plates (to give an example). A 30-digit number would be romantic; we could have there the color of the car, the number of doors it has, the number of wheels, the brand and possibly even the number of times its owner has had sex in the back seat; but the plate is small and few digits are occupied; the traffic policeman has a bad memory and is busy remembering the number easily even if the car is speeding; and then it must be immutable in time as long as it is the same vehicle. From there methods arise that can convert a number based on the 10 numerical digits (base 10) to a code of combinations of those ten numbers and the 26 letters of the alphabet (base 36);

An example of a base 10 to base 36 conversion is: 0311000226 would mean 555TB6. It means that with just 6 digits it could support up to ten billion unique properties, maintaining the same size (6 digits). As the automation is possible to do this conversion and relation against previous numbers; for the citizen, the code is a short string, internally with the code characteristics can be masked or simply a consecutive number at the national level. To test how this works, I suggest this google link.

http://www.unitconversion.org/numbers/base-10-to-base-36-conversion.html

5. Joint work between private and public companies

This trend has had a great impact on public-private partnership models, seeking to transfer to the private sector those aspects that are not a sustainable business for the public institution. In other years, the Cadastre did the complete survey in the field, with brigades of people hired by the institution; today it is very easy to outsource that operation. Likewise, the digitization and extraction of data from physical records, allowing the private sector to carry out those jobs that are "temporary" or at least if they are executed well, they are only done once, avoiding investment in equipment that becomes obsolete with the weather.

However, it is a challenge on which there is much to systematize in terms of gradualness and risks. Transferring a front-office to the bank seems very easy and almost obligatory, but handing over the protection of information requires other types of guarantees, not only in terms of security but also in legal and administrative responsibility.

6. The investment in Cadastre will be recoverable

The article does not give for more, and we hope to touch it in a future edition. But basically this principle is based on the fact that the capture of information, migration from physical to digital or construction of a large system is done once. And it is done well. The subsequent update operation and its evolution should not require loans from international organizations, but should be in a matrix of re-investment of the resources generated from innovation in new products and services.

2034 Land Registry Declarations

For 2014 an evaluation is made of how the journey was, advances and new findings to consider what would come in the next 20 years.

In this review, we consider milestones that have impacted the information revolution on the cadastre, such as the spatial data bases and infrastructures, the intrinsic geolocation of society; similarly, visions that have given new interests to the Cadastre as Land Administration, Governance of the territory and what could be expected in the future with the simplification in mind.

Thus 6 new statements and 6 questions arise. Like Cadastre 2014, it is an interpretation based on the context of what is already happening. Some countries that have overcome elementary gaps will adopt some of these trends, because their stability and demand are already demanding something more in their market; this will radiate in others who could save themselves a shortcut of conventionality. Others, due to having basic needs, will keep trying to fill the debt of the 2014 Cadastre declarations.

1. Precise mensura

The theme is so old, that Borges collects it from a source that dates from 1658:

In that Empire, the Art of Cartography achieved such Perfection that the map of a single Province occupied an entire City, and the map of the Empire, a whole Province. Over time, these Unconscionable Maps did not satisfy and the Cartographers Colleges raised a Map of the Empire, which was the size of the Empire and coincidentally coincided with it.

Less Addicted to the Study of Cartography, the Next Generations understood that this dilated Map was useless and not without Impiety they gave it to the Inclemencies of the Sun and the Winters. In the deserts of the West there are ruined Map Ruins, inhabited by Animals and by Beggars; throughout the country there is no other relic of the Geographical Disciplines.

It has always been a concern, especially in contexts where it is forgotten that having the entire territory with a controlled precision attribute is more important than having only one piece with ultra-precision. With the current technological possibilities, this statement states that this topic will be of general interest in the next 20 years; especially where the coverage of the territory has already been exceeded and the only interest is to improve its precision.

2. Orientation objects for Rights, Restrictions and Responsibilities

This is an evolution of what was already proposed in Cadastre 2014, with the variant that instead of being only spatial relationships between the legal territorial objects on the properties, they could be objects with their own extended models. An example ahead of time is the Special Regime Registry that some countries already have; I insist, beyond being a relationship between layers, it leads to the application of registration techniques to these objects that guarantee their history, legitimacy, prayer of the interested party and disposition at the time of use in the rating.

So, that a cone of approximation of the landing of an airport, happens to be modeled as what it is; a property more than public law, but with the particularity that overlaps many properties of private law, has an antecedent that is the law that constituted it, an owner that is the institution that operates it, effective date of its spatial geometry ( three-dimensional) and can only be modified through a transaction.

3. Ability to manage 3D

This is more than obvious. So far the three-dimensional has been representative, largely alphanumeric. It is possible to get to an apartment in horizontal property knowing its property code, the stage of the construction complex, the tower number, the level and the apartment number.

The trend of Digital Twins and SmartCities is leading to three-dimensional modeling mechanisms on software functionalities for asset management (Indoors Cadastre). Well, beyond that representation, Cadastre 2034 says that they can be managed; means, apply registry techniques so that their update is not only touch and delete, but are associated with life cycle transactions; They are born, their geometry is captured, they are modeled, they come into operation with everyday human processes, they undergo mutations, and they even die.

This 3D management capability will involve the adoption of new methods for capturing information, taking advantage of techniques that now exist as point clouds but with functionalities to facilitate the identification of simplified objects with infrastructure models and digital terrain models.

4. Real-time update

As long as the actors involved in land administration are integrated into a real estate master, sequential flows that can be parallel will be unnecessary. As an example, the bank should be able to enter a mortgage without a notary as an intermediary; In total, he is a user empowered before the system and he is the one who has entered into a contract with the citizen, who authorizes the lien on his property. By far, an old-fashioned government will be able to place a registrar that is clicking on a button inside accepting the registration, until he gets tired of asking for licenses because his finger hurts, they will put him on the street and delegate the performance to him to an authorized entity in the bank. The same logic is applicable to the other actors who now intervene in a transaction, such as the urban curator, the surveyor, the notary, the municipality, etc. As long as the actors are integrated, the update will be in real time and the competition will be the best services.

And then, the cadastre will be updated by the people, at the point where they make transactions.

This sounds crazy, but it is what already happens with banking. Before, the bank issued a card (ha, like travel ticket cards), and it was necessary to go to the bank to withdraw money, and then with that money buy, and if we had excess we could go to deposit it in the bank or in the can of milk under the bed. Today you open a bank account, and they give you a debit card and a password to manage on the Internet; You no longer withdraw at the bank, but at an ATM; your account is updated in real time when you make purchases in any business, online or transfer to third parties from your mobile while you are in the taxi.

The trend points there, that the user enters his account of the National Property Registry, and sees there the properties he has, if he wants to mortgage he can do it directly with the bank, if he wants to sell it he can do it directly, if he wants to manage a construction license or an operating permit ... as it already happens in the bank! "Like Uber", this cannot be stopped by archaic cadastre-registry officials, not even notarial unions. Simply the need of the market; to the extent that the processes are standardized, the security and completeness of the information is strengthened; disruptive business models will be merged with citizen-based solutions as a priority.

In this sense, processes that for now operate separately may converge, such as the real estate market (leases and sales) where B2B schemes such as AirBnb are killing the conventional model with a global reach self-managed by the end user; dying on the way the real estate agent, the lawyer who makes the contract, the appraiser who makes the study of economic capacity, the company that guarantees the insurance and above all the state that is costing to take out the tax.

It will also happen that property registration systems will be unified, to a register of "goods available to be marketed", this applies to situations such as movable property (vehicles), intellectual goods, commercial goods (companies, shares), under an equivalence of " marketable securities'. For this, technologies as BlockChain and artificial intelligence should take advantage of intelligent contracts, in the logic of a digital twin object of physical reality with its cryptocurrency equivalent, to the extent that securitization is guaranteed in a registry where the government no longer has a candle.

And then, the cadastre-registry will be updated in real time as it already happens in other environments of everyday life.

It is also a question of "humanization of the urgency that the Cadastral-Registral Register meet a great need in the world." That is why the question: Is the Conventional Cadastre ready to meet in cost, time and traceability the need of 70% of the population that lacks property rights? And we are not referring to making a recognition of the territory in 50 years, but in maximum record times of 6 years; although for this we must break the paradigms of the current flow of the cadastral - registry process, focusing on what adds value to the Land Administration chain.

We refer, therefore, to this aspect associated with this declaration is the global need to register people who do not have an identification recognized by an official system, the properties that have not been registered and the list of rights that these people exercise over this land. This, without counting that in what has already been registered there is a terrible outdated informality. Getting to solve this problem in the next 20 years implies re-thinking about disruptive methods that allow reduction of time, costs and greater participation of the population.

5. Global and interoperable Cadastre

Just that. Market-motivated standardization, with universal object identifier. And to the garbage can the 30-digit code that changes every time the property fills up with mountains.

6. Ability to manage ecological borders

This implies the mapping of intangible objects, such as a nature reserve whose interest is international, a reserve of corals in the sea.

Questions of probable future roles of the Cadastre

With Cadastre 2034, problems of global interest are also raised, in which it could be that Cadastre intervenes, and that if so, it would mark new paradigms for the management of holistic information hubs in an increasingly connected global environment. These questions are:

1. Land grabbing Will the Cadastre play a role in the registration of this information?
2. Food safety. Will there be interest in associating to the objects of the territory their characteristics and relation with the human being on the use, access and availability of the right to food?
3. Climate change. Will there be interest in the registration of rights with vulnerability dependencies associated with climate change?
4. Crowd Cadastre. What can and cannot be done in a collaborative cadastre?
5. Green cadastre. Green border law?
6. Global cadastre. What infrastructure will be necessary for a global Cadastre?


FIG 2019 - Hanoi 

Fit-for-purpose cadastre is like Uber. Geometers must get involved, because it will happen with or without us.

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