Effects of reverse geocoding on OpenStreetMap tag quality assessment

Creative Commons License

Kılıç B., Hacar M., Gülgen F.

TRANSACTIONS IN GIS, vol.27, no.5, pp.1599-1613, 2023 (SSCI) identifier

  • Publication Type: Article / Article
  • Volume: 27 Issue: 5
  • Publication Date: 2023
  • Doi Number: 10.1111/tgis.13089
  • Journal Indexes: Social Sciences Citation Index (SSCI), Scopus, Academic Search Premier, ABI/INFORM, Aquatic Science & Fisheries Abstracts (ASFA), Business Source Elite, Business Source Premier, CAB Abstracts, Environment Index, Geobase, INSPEC, DIALNET, Civil Engineering Abstracts
  • Page Numbers: pp.1599-1613
  • Yıldız Technical University Affiliated: Yes


OpenStreetMap (OSM), a widely-used open-source geographic information system platform, provides a vast geographic dataset in which users contribute both geometric information (nodes, ways, and relations) and semantic information (tags). This method of voluntary contributions is governed by the collective effort of the users. It is widely acknowledged that the quantity of tag information is substantial, but its quality is often poor. Researchers are therefore trying to assess the quality of the tags and enhance the data through various integration experiments. This article investigates the validity of the tags for geographical objects in metropolitan areas using municipal data and a reverse geocoding technique. The proposed method evaluates the data quality and the matching process carried out by reverse geocoding, using municipal points of interest as a reference. The accuracy of the tag and address information and road network centrality metrics were assessed for the OSM objects that were matched to the locations of interest. The tags were found to match the points of interest with an accuracy of 88%. Furthermore, the tag values were categorized and analyzed based on their similarity. It is concluded that in metropolitan settings where centers of interest are closely located, the accuracy of tags and addresses tends to decrease.