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A clearinghouse is

a distributed network of data producers, managers, and users linked electronically, such as over the Internet. Through the Clearinghouse, users can use a single interface to search and access metadata and/or data for the themes they seek. The Clearinghouse includes the sites across the country where the metadata and data are stored, usually at the site of the producer or intermediary.[1]
[a] repository structure, physical or virtual, that collects, stores, and disseminates information, metadata, and data. A clearinghouse provides widespread access to information and is generally thought of as reaching or existing outside organizational boundaries.[2]


A clearinghouse (also clearing house) is

[a] central location or central processing mechanism through which financial institutions agree to exchange payment instructions. The institutions settle for items exchanged at a designated time, based on the rules and procedures of the clearing house.[3]


  1. Office of Management and Budget, Coordination of Geographic Information and Related Spatial Data Activities OMB Circular No. A-16, App. D (Rev. Aug. 19, 2002) (full-text).
  2., GIS Glossary (full-text).
  3. Internet Banking: Comptroller’s Handbook, at 67.

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