Laboratory of Toponymy

" "

Toponymy is a science that studies geographical names - place names or toponyms. The mission of the Toponymic Laboratory is to obtain, process, and maintain place name data (place names in relation to their respective geographical features) and to provide it to users within and outside the Latvian Geospatial Information Agency (LGIA).

The Laboratory of Toponymy is a structural unit of the Cartography Department of LGIA.

The Laboratory of Toponymy was established in 1994 by the State Land Service. After the reorganization of the State Land Service (as of March 1, 2006), cartography, incl. toponymy (functions and respective structural units) were taken over by LGIA.

Functions and tasks of Laboratory of Toponymy:

  • obtains, prepares and updates the data of place names necessary for the performance of geodesic and cartographic activities;
  • makes and maintains Place Names Databse;
  • prepares the draft decisions of the LGIA and the necessary information for the assignment of official place names and official designations to natural sites;
  • within its competence, performs other functions of the Agency in the field of toponyms and related information specified in the "Regulation on Toponymic Information" and other legislative acts of the Republic of Latvia;
  • within its competence, co-operates and participates in the implementation of projects with institutions of the North Atlantic Treaty Organization and the European Union and international competent organizations;
  • performs research in the field of applied toponymy and publishes the results thereof;
  • prepares the geographical names dictionaries and catalogues;
  • promotes the dissemination of accurate information on Latvian place names and its inclusion in military and civilian cartographic and geodetic products and basic data;
  • within its competence, develops proposals for improvement of legislative acts.

Read more about the Place Names Database and Services for the preparation of place names information in Areas of work.