We analyzed the corpus of three geoscientific journals to investigate if there are enough locational references in research articles to apply a geographical search method, such as the example of New Zealand. Based on all available abstracts and all freely available papers of the “New Zealand Journal of Geology and Geophysics”, the “New Zealand Journal of Marine and Freshwater Research”, and the “Journal of Hydrology, New Zealand”, we searched title, abstracts, and full texts for place name occurrences that match records from the official Land Information New Zealand (LINZ) gazetteer. We generated ISO standard compliant metadata records for each article including the spatial references and made them available in a public catalogue service. This catalogue can be queried for articles based on authors, titles, keywords, topics, and spatial reference. We visualize the results in a map to show which area the research articles are about, and how much and how densely geographic space is described through these geoscientific research articles by mapping mentioned place names by their geographic locations. We outlined the methodology and technical framework for the geo-referencing of the journal articles and the platform design for this knowledge inventory. The results indicate that the use of well-crafted abstracts for journal articles with carefully chosen place names of relevance for the article provides a guideline for geographically referencing unstructured information like journal articles and reports in order to make such resources discoverable through geographical queries. Lastly, this approach can actively support integrated holistic assessment of water resources and support decision making.
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