A coastal environmental atlas consists of information relevant to describe the environmental situation along the coastline. The environmental status is not only dependent on data which is primarily related to the environment. Relevant could also be information about administrative boundaries, geophysical conditions like depth and elevation data, meteorological data, built structures and more.
When metadata records are formatted to a common standard, it facilitates the location and readability of the metadata by both humans and machines. The International Organization for Standards (ISO) metadata standard (ISO 19115) provides a set of Core metadata elements that must occur in every national profile/implementation. Most of these elements either map to existing CSDGM metadata elements or represent properties of the data that can be determined and populated using a data integrated metadata tool. Topic Category is the only mandatory element of the ISO core metadata set that requires new information that cannot be directly captured from the data.
We have so far not been able to find any categorization initiatives in Tanzania. So far we are only familiar ad-hoc categorization. Using the ISO 19115 standard is but one of many possible standardization schemes. Using standards makes sense, and with time we will probably also find relevant standards which span across industries and disciplines.
For a list of the categories used under ISO 19115 please look at the topic categories webpage.