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Most of Ocean Networks Canada's data products come with a metadata file, which gives information about all aspects of data. Ocean Networks Canada has transitioned from the previous metadata product, which follows the guidelines from the US Federal Geographic Data Committee (FGDC) to ISO 19115 Metadata standard.

This is a beta version of the ISO 19115 metadata product which does not include information about data quality & gaps. 

Information is presented within 6 packages - MI_Metadata , MD_DataIdentificationEX_ExtentMD_MaintenanceInformationMD_DistributionMD_Constraints.


MI_Metadata (M)

  • metadataIdentifier : unique identifier for the metadata record itself
  • dateInfo: dates associated with the metadata record. 
  • metadataStandard : citation of the metadata standard used
  • contact : the individual/organization responsible for metadata creation and maintenance
  • MD_Metadatascope : scope of resource to which the metadata applies

MD_DataIdentification (M)

  • abstract : description of the dataset

  • purpose : the intentions for which the resource was developed

  • status : term taken from progress codelist

  • topicCategory : Main theme(s) of the resource

  • citation : citation for the resource, includes name, publication date, identifiers, originators and publishers.

  • descriptiveKeywords : can fall into one of several thematic categories (e.g., place, theme, instrument), recommend using a citeable thesaurus/controlled vocabulary (like those in the NERC2.0 server)


  • description : general free text description of the geographic location associated with the resource
  • EX_GeographicBoundingBox : where to record the latitude/longitude associated with data (option to specify polygon if box not appropriate
  • EX_TemporalExtent: the time period data collection took place, technically single temporal instance is allowed but range is preferred
  • EX_VerticalExtent: minimum and maximum vertical extent of the resource


  • maintenanceAndUpdateFrequency: codelist that provides standard periods at which modifications are made to the data after it is first produced
  • maintenanceNote: information regarding specific requirements for maintaining the resource



  • MD_LegalConstraints: specifies any constraints on the use or access to a resource through the restrictions codelist, also includes a free text elements to explain use limitations or constraints not covered by one of the provided terms

All details about the purpose of these fields can be found at:

Official repository containing XML for ISO 19115:

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