Moving National Mapping Organizations from Surviving to Thriving

Spatial Roundtable Focuses on Sustaining Geographic Information with Fewer Resources

National mapping, charting, and data production organizations (NDPs) are turning to efficient solutions like geographic information systems (GIS) to continue providing authoritative data for citizens and organizations in a time of global economic cutbacks. The data is used for country-wide and transnational mapping activities that support economic activities, emergency response, security, and environmental monitoring. Faced with reduced resources and staff cuts, many NDPs are struggling to maintain the quality and accuracy of data necessary to support these activities. Mark Cygan, map, chart, and data production and spatial data infrastructure (SDI) industry manager for Esri, takes a closer look at this issue at the Spatial Roundtable blog.

“Doing more with less is a necessary way of doing business in today’s economic climate,” states Cygan. “Even though NDPs are seeing significant staff cuts and reduced budgets, they continue to demonstrate their strategic value in helping solve national issues and justifying funding.”

The value of authoritative data created by NDPs was officially recognized in 1992 at the Rio Earth Summit—officially called the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development—Rio de Janeiro, Brazil. Recently, organizations such as the Group on Earth Observations and the United Nations Economic and Social Council Statistics Division have also emphasized the importance of authoritative data in addressing global issues.

Cygan argues that supporting NDPs in their mission of providing data is critical and asks the community to come together and join the conversation about how NDPs can continue to be successful and thrive in the face of reduced resources at spatialroundtable.com.

[Source: Esri press release]