INSPIRE is an acronym for INfrastructure for SPatial InfoRmation in Europe
It is the name given to European Directive 2007/2/EC which aims to establish an infrastructure for spatial information in the European Union. Its effect will be to make spatial or geographical information more accessible and interoperable for a wide range of purposes and to facilitate better environmental policy across the EU.
The European directive was transposed into UK law in 2009.
The law means that UK public bodies (government departments and the bodies funded by them) must make data they collect publicly accessible and reusable.
For more information see data.gov.uk