Built for Effective Governance- the Statistical Map APIs in Taiwan


One of the prerequisites for effective governance is to collect detailed demographic, socioeconomic, and geographic data for the whole country, and it is the main reason makes the statistical data and topographic maps so important for every modern country. However, in the past, these two kinds of data were separately collected and stored. So did the situation in Taiwan. Just five years ago, the statistical data in Taiwan was still not well integrated with spatial data, and the data sharing between the central and local government was also not efficient because there had no platform to share data across different units.

To solve the problem of data sharing and data integration, the Department of Statistics, the Ministry of the Interior, Taiwan has decided to develop a national service platform that integrates all statistical data and provides various map APIs for diverse government departments and research institutes. As a result, the platform should be deployed with cloud technology so that all data could be accessed rapidly and also maintained conveniently. 


As mentioned above, the Department of Statistics, the Ministry of the Interior aims to establish a national service platform that can instantly deliver statistical data with spatial attributes to various units.


Due to rich experiences and the prestige in the GIS industry, Supergeo was authorized to develop the National Statistical Map APIs by the Department of Statistics, MOI.

Supergeo conducted this project with its state-of-the-art geospatial technologies and products, including the geocoding technology and the powerful SuperGIS Server 3.2 as the core server system.

And also, to reduce the time and costs spent on using the APIs, the programming language for the APIs is JavaScript, one of the most popular front-end languages, and it is compatible with most browsers.


Since this project is a long-term project, the APIs have been upgraded and improved every year. Some of the tangible results from 2015 includes:

  1. Users can export the KML file of the choropleth map with Z-value, which enables users to visualize the data in 3D environment.
  2. Users can depict the choropleth map and graduated symbols at the same time.
  3. Text labels can be added to an image choropleth map.
  4. The interactive window of the bar chart and the pie chart can display detailed information about the graph.
  5. All statistical maps can be exported as KML files. It will be easy to display or integrate with other spatial data in Google Earth.
Figure 1- Discovering the relation between the total population (as choropleth map) and the aged dependency ratio (as graduated symbol) from the demo site of county level statistical map
Figure 2- Comparing the total area between the commercial zone, farming zone, and industrial zone with bar charts from the demo site of county level statistical map
Figure 3- Exporting the student number of elementary schools in Nantou County as Z-value and displaying it with Google Earth

This project not only successfully helps both local and central governments to use abundant statistical data with ease but also saves massive budgets and efforts that were previously spent on similar but minor projects. By developing APIs, different units could create more flexible platforms base on their real needs instead of using a standard one.

The accomplished platform currently provides various statistical data, including data of land and construction, education and culture, public health, public safety, social welfare, environment, transportation, and so on. There will be more in the future. By analyzing these fine-grained statistical data, policy makers can obtain meaningful results and make wiser decisions.

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