Intensifying and increasingly complex physical developments under, on, and above ground, as well as the speed and accessibility of digital innovation, is resulting in growing interest in public sector investment in 3D geo-information. In Europe, a consortium of 11 public mapping agencies (PMAs) recently undertook a cost-benefit analysis for pursuing adoption of 3D geo-information. However, broader public management literature has shown that while economic value is vital for justifying public investment, it is not the only driving factor and that the creation of public value is crucially and equally significant as it conveys social and political legitimacy. Using a public value perspective, this paper aims to re-examine the data collected by the consortium of PMAs. Content analysis of the qualitative data provides strong examples of how 3D geo-information may potentially manifest as different types of public value across a broad public of stakeholders as well as providing evidence that such innovation would likely be politically as well as operationally viable. Nonetheless, the lack of a clear obvious need for 3D geo-information that responds to a specific societal challenge may pose an impediment to successful innovation.
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