Geospatial Intelligence has been defined in U.S. Code Title 10, §467: “The term geospatial intelligence means the exploitation and analysis of imagery and geospatial information to describe, assess, and visually depict physical features and geographically referenced activities on the earth. Therefore, geospatial intelligence consists of imagery, imagery intelligence, and geospatial information”.
In practice, geospatial intelligence refers to a discipline that includes extracting and analyzing geospatial images and information to describe, evaluate, and visually represent physical characteristics and geographically related activities on earth.
Geospatial Intelligence combines different fields, such as mapping, cartography, imagery analysis, and imagery intelligence. In addition to its use in a military context, many organizations in sectors such as telecommunication, smart cities, retail, municipalities, transportation, public health and safety and real estate use geospatial intelligence to improve or optimize everyday life quality.
The main principle of geospatial intelligence is to organize and combine all available data around its geographical location on earth and then leverage it to develop products that planners and decision-makers can use.