URISA Announces 2012 GIS Hall of Fame Inductees

GIS Hall of FameThe Urban and Regional Information Systems Association (URISA) established the GIS Hall of Fame in 2005 to recognize and honor the most esteemed leaders of the geospatial community. To be considered for the GIS Hall of Fame, an individual’s or an organization’s record of contribution to the advancement of the industry demonstrates creative thinking and actions, vision and innovation, inspiring leadership, perseverance, and community mindedness. Hall of Fame inductees are individuals or organizations whose contributions and accomplishments have moved the geospatial industry and user community in a better, stronger direction.

This year, the GIS Hall of Fame Nomination Committee, composed of URISA Past Presidents, proposed five federal agencies that have made substantial contributions to the GIS community and profession. The URISA Board of Directors unanimously approved each nominee.  URISA is pleased to announce the 2012 GIS Hall of Fame inductees:

  • National Aeronautics and Space Administration
  • Natural Resources Canada
  • Statistics Canada
  • United States Census Bureau
  • United States Geological Survey

Representatives from each agency will be in attendance at URISA’s 50th Annual Conference in Portland, Oregon, where each will be inducted into the URISA GIS Hall of Fame during the Awards Ceremony on Wednesday, October 3, 2012.

“The United States Geological Survey (USGS) is thrilled to be receiving this award from URISA and is immensely proud of the many USGS employees who have pioneered the application of GIS in the programs we carry out on behalf of the U.S. Department of the Interior and the citizens of our Nation”. — Mark DeMulder, Director, USGS National Geospatial Program

“NASA is honored by this recognition from a leader in the use of geospatial data and tools across sectors.  This honor is truly a tribute to the many people who design and operate the Earth-observing satellite missions, process and deliver the data, and analyze the measurements to benefit all humankind.” — Michael H. Freilich, Director of the NASA Earth Science Division

“Statistics Canada is honored to be recognized by the URISA GIS Hall of Fame for its leadership role in advancing GIS technology for the production and dissemination of statistical data in Canada. The Agency is most proud of its staff who have partnered with organizations in Canada and internationally to develop and adopt innovative GIS solutions to meet increasing and evolving user needs.” — Rosemary Bender, Assistant Chief Statistician, Informatics and Methodology, Statistics Canada

“The U.S. Census Bureau is honored to be inducted into the URISA GIS Hall of Fame, which recognizes the achievements of Census Bureau staff for its technological innovations for making GIS data available to the nation.” —  Thomas L. Mesenbourg, Acting Director, Census Bureau

“Natural Resources Canada is proud to be recognized for its scientific and technological accomplishments in geomatics. This honour is a reflection of the dedication and professionalism of our staff and partners who have advanced geomatics innovation in Canada and beyond.”—  The Honourable Joe Oliver, P.C., M.P., Minister, Natural Resources Canada

The 2012 inductees will join the following esteemed members of URISA’s GIS Hall of Fame, each of which is profiled online (http://www.urisa.org/hall_of_fame):

  • 2005 Inductees: Edgar Horwood, Ian McHarg, Roger Tomlinson, Jack Dangermond, Nancy Tosta, and the Harvard Lab
  • 2006 Inductee: Gary Hunter
  • 2007 Inductees: Don Cooke and Michael Goodchild
  • 2009 Inductees: Will Craig and Carl Reed
  • 2010 Inductee: C. Dana Tomlin
  • 2011 Inductees: William Huxhold and Barry Wellar

For more information about URISA, the GIS Hall of Fame, and GIS-Pro 2012: URISA’s 50th Annual Conference for GIS Professionals, visit www.urisa.org.

[Source: URISA press release]

ArcGIS for AutoCAD Offers Advanced CAD and GIS Interoperability

Use ArcGIS for AutoCAD to easily add, create, and edit GIS information in your AutoCAD drawings.

Use ArcGIS for AutoCAD to easily add, create, and edit GIS information in your AutoCAD drawings.

New Version Introduces Geodatabase Editing

The latest release of ArcGIS for AutoCAD, Esri’s free AutoCAD plug-in, improves the ability to exchange data and information between the ArcGIS and AutoCAD platforms. ArcGIS for AutoCAD users with read/write access to ArcGIS for Server feature services can now edit geodatabases through AutoCAD. This enables easier data dissemination between CAD and GIS users across the enterprise, reduces the duplication of work, and increases efficiency.

CAD professionals can use the free downloadable application to add, create, and edit GIS data within AutoCAD drawings. For example, users can add maps and map services from enterprise or cloud servers, such as ArcGIS Online, to their drawings, giving the design a geographic context and a common operating picture for the organization.

“ArcGIS for AutoCAD is the interface to the ArcGIS system and all of its rich data content, sharing, and data management,” states Esri CAD product manager Don Kuehne. “The possibilities presented by the combination of AutoCAD and ArcGIS services to automate editing and data maintenance workflows are going to result in an exponential leap in value for those who take advantage of them.”

The new release also includes access to image services and a geolocation service for navigating within an AutoCAD drawing. AutoCAD 2010/2011/2012 (32-bit and 64-bit) systems are supported. To learn more about or to download the new release of ArcGIS for AutoCAD, visit esri.com/autocadapp.

[Source: Esri press release]

Clinton Climate Initiative Receives 2012 Special Achievement in GIS Award

Clinton FoundationLast month at the Esri International User Conference, Clinton Climate Initiative (CCI) received the 2012 Special Achievements in GIS Award. The award recognized CCI for using geographic information system (GIS) technology to help countries monitor their carbon levels.

CCI’s Forestry Program is developing forestry projects and carbon measurement systems that help governments and local communities receive compensation for preserving and re-growing forests. As global warming is caused by increased carbon dioxide in the atmosphere from burning fossil fuels – and deforestation accounts for about 15% of total carbon dioxide emissions in the world – scientists predict that if governments and communities don’t take action to reduce carbon dioxide emissions, our world will face increasingly drastic consequences ranging from stronger heat waves to more droughts and floods to increasing sea level. All of these affect agriculture, food security, viability of coastal cities, and water availability around the world.

In order to reduce emissions, governments and economies must use less fossil fuels and increase use of energy efficient technologies and renewable technologies. CCI’s Forestry Program focuses on helping developing countries reverse deforestation and plant new trees. If countries are able to show that they can monitor and verify that they are reducing their carbon dioxide emissions, countries become eligible for funding to manage their forest programs and other low-carbon economic activities.

CCI was recognized with the 2012 Special Achievement in GIS Award for helping the country of Guyana become eligible for $70 million in forest-based payments from the government of Norway. Guyana is now using this funding to facilitate specific elements of a Low Carbon Development Plan envisioned and put in place by former Guyana President Bharrat Jagdeo. This project is part of CCI’s Forestry Program and has been supported by the Rockefeller Foundation and the governments of Norway and Australia.

CCI uses GIS technology as a centerpiece of forest carbon measurement, reporting, and verification (MRV) systems for developing countries. GIS is one of three legs of the platform–Data, Models, and GIS–that allows countries to determine how much carbon they have, how it is changing, and how the drivers of deforestation and forest degradation can be monitored and adjusted as required.

With GIS systems in place for forestry, developing countries can be eligible for direct payments through international agreements based on the effectiveness of their MRV systems. Once in place, the GIS systems can be used more broadly by the countries for other resource development, land surveys, and determination of land tenure.

Read more about CCI’s forestry projects.

[Source: Clinton Foundation press release]

Obesogenic Neighborhood Environments, Child and Parent Obesity: The Neighborhood Impact on Kids Study

American Journal of Preventive MedicineAmerican Journal of Preventive Medicine, May 2012, Vol. 42, No. 5

“Background: Identifying neighborhood environment attributes related to childhood obesity can inform environmental changes for obesity prevention.

“Purpose: To evaluate child and parent weight status across neighborhoods in King County (Seattle metropolitan area) and San Diego County differing in GIS-defıned physical activity environment (PAE) and nutrition environment (NE) characteristics.

“Methods: Neighborhoods were selected to represent high (favorable) versus low (unfavorable) on the two measures, forming four neighborhood types (low on both measures, low PAE/high NE, high PAE/low NE, and high on both measures). Weight and height of children aged 6–11 yearsandone parent (n730) from selected neighborhoods were assessed in 2007–2009. Differences in child and parent overweight and obesity by neighborhood type were examined, adjusting for neighborhood-, family-, and individual-level demographics.

“Results: Children from neighborhoods high on both environment measures were less likely to be obese (7.7% vs 15.9%,OR0.44, p0.02) and marginally less likely to be overweight (23.7% vs 31.7%,OR0.67, p0.08) than children from neighborhoods low on both measures. In models adjusted for parent weight status and demographic factors, neighborhood environment type remained related to child obesity (high vs low on both measures, OR0.41, p0.03). Parents in neighborhoods high on both measures (versus low on both) were marginally less likely to be obese (20.1% vs 27.7%,OR0.66, p0.08), although parent overweight did not differ by neighborhood environment. The lower odds of parent obesity in neighborhoods with environments supportive of physical activity and healthy eating remained in models adjusted for demographics (high vs low on the environment measures, OR0.57, p0.053).

“Conclusions: Findings support the proposed GIS-based defınitions of obesogenic neighborhoods for children and parents that consider both physical activity and nutrition environment features.”

URISA Geospatial Management Competency Model Accepted by U.S. Department of Labor

URISAThe U.S. Department of Labor Employment and Training Administration (DOLETA) has incorporated URISA’s Geospatial Management Competency Model (GMCM) in its Competency Model Clearinghouse (http://www.careeronestop.org/competencymodel/). This endorsement follows a year-long effort to draft the GMCM by a task force of 18 contributors and a public review process that attracted 100 comments.

Of the 20 industries that have published competency models, the Geospatial industry is the first to have specified management competencies.  Dr.

Jennifer Troke of DOLETA’s Office of Workforce Investment called the GMCM “a groundbreaking accomplishment.”

URISA’s Geospatial Management Competency Model (http://www.urisa.org/gmcm) specifies 74 essential competencies and 18 competency areas that characterize the work of most successful managers in the geospatial industry. The GMCM is an element of DOLETA’s Geospatial Technology Competency Model (GTCM), which specifies the foundational (Tiers 1-3), industry-wide (Tier 4), and industry sector-specific (Tier 5) expertise characteristic of the various occupations that comprise the geospatial industry (http://www.careeronestop.org/CompetencyModel/pyramid.aspx?GEO=Y).

Descriptions of individual geospatial occupations, including occupation-specific competencies and job requirements (Tiers 6-8), are published in DOLETA’s O*NET occupation database (http://www.onetonline.org/). The GMCM corresponds to Tier 9 of the GTCM.

Competency models are used to guide individual professional development, to help people move up or over in an organization or industry, to help educators and trainers develop curricula that address workforce needs, to inform development of interview protocols, as requirements for professional certification, and as criteria for academic program accreditation and articulation.

The GMCM is a key component of URISA’s recently announced GIS Management Institute (GMI) initiative. The initiative will be a key topic of discussion at GIS-Pro 2012: URISA’s 50th annual conference in Portland, OR (http://www.urisa.org/gispro2012).  According to URISA President Greg Babinski, “Development of the Geospatial Management Competency Model once again demonstrates URISA leadership in the field. For almost 50 years now URISA has been identifying and addressing challenges in the practical application of technology for urban and regional systems. The GMCM continues that practice and the intellectual capital it represents for the Geospatial Profession will be a key resource to help develop a GIS management body of knowledge.”

The Urban and Regional Information Systems Association’s (URISA’s) qualifications to organize the GMCM effort include its nearly 50-year history as one of the founding organizations of the GIS profession, its successful organization of the GIS Certification Institute and the URISA Leadership Academy, and its healthy working relationships with other professional and scientific associations in the geospatial field through the Coalition on Geospatial Organizations (COGO).

Proceed to URISA’s Geospatial Management Competency Model (http://www.urisa.org/gmcm)

[Source: URISA press release]

Landslide Susceptibility Mapping at Hoa Binh Province (Vietnam) using an Adaptive Neuro-fuzzy Inference System and GIS

Computers & GeosciencesComputers & Geosciences, Volume 45, August 2012, Pages 199–211

Dieu Tien Bui, Biswajeet Pradhan, Owe Lofman, Inge Revhaug, and Oystein B. Dick

“The objective of this study is to investigate a potential application of the Adaptive Neuro-Fuzzy Inference System (ANFIS) and the Geographic Information System (GIS) as a relatively new approach for landslide susceptibility mapping in the Hoa Binh province of Vietnam. Firstly, a landslide inventory map with a total of 118 landslide locations was constructed from various sources. Then the landslide inventory was randomly split into a testing dataset 70% (82 landslide locations) for training the models and the remaining 30% (36 landslides locations) was used for validation purpose. Ten landslide conditioning factors such as slope, aspect, curvature, lithology, land use, soil type, rainfall, distance to roads, distance to rivers, and distance to faults were considered in the analysis. The hybrid learning algorithm and six different membership functions (Gaussmf, Gauss2mf, Gbellmf, Sigmf, Dsigmf, Psigmf) were applied to generate the landslide susceptibility maps.

Landslide inventory of the study area.

Landslide inventory of the study area.

“The validation dataset, which was not considered in the ANFIS modeling process, was used to validate the landslide susceptibility maps using the prediction rate method. The validation results showed that the area under the curve (AUC) for six ANFIS models vary from 0.739 to 0.848. It indicates that the prediction capability depends on the membership functions used in the ANFIS. The models with Sigmf (0.848) and Gaussmf (0.825) have shown the highest prediction capability. The results of this study show that landslide susceptibility mapping in the Hoa Binh province of Vietnam using the ANFIS approach is viable. As far as the performance of the ANFIS approach is concerned, the results appeared to be quite satisfactory, the zones determined on the map being zones of relative susceptibility.”

URISA Announces 2012 Exemplary Systems in Government Award Winners

URISAURISA is pleased to announce the recipients of 2012 URISA Exemplary Systems in Government (ESIG) Awards. Since 1980, URISA’s ESIG Awards have recognized exceptional achievements in the application of information technology that have improved the delivery and quality of government services. URISA congratulates all of the participants in the 2012 Exemplary Systems in Government Award program. The recognized systems will be celebrated during the Awards Breakfast at GIS-Pro 2012: URISA’s 50th Annual Conference in Portland. This year’s competition resulted in two exemplary systems in the Enterprise Systems category and one distinguished system.

ENTERPRISE SYSTEMS – Systems in this category are outstanding and working examples of using information systems technology in a multi-department environment as part of an integrated process. These systems exemplify effective use of technology yielding widespread improvements in the process(es) and/or service(s) involved and/or cost savings to the organization.

2012 ESIG Winners:

  • Orange County’s Addressing and Land Development Information Network (ALADIN)
    Submitted by Louis Schoolkate, Orange County GIS Coordinator, Orlando, Florida

This solution was deemed exemplary by the ESIG Review Committee because it not only integrates GIS into addressing, zoning, document management and land development systems, but it also integrates GIS into the daily workflows of management and front-line staff to facilitate decision-making. Aladin further exemplifies success in the way it enables Orange County, the world’s number one tourist destination, to not only support its permanent population of one million, but it also allows the County to meet the annual demands and expectations presented by 52 million tourists.  Orange County, like many government agencies over the past years, has had to deal with annual budget cuts and staffing reductions.  Aladin, because of the efficiencies built into its workflows, enables County staff to continue to deliver the same level of customer service with fewer resources.  Projects like Aladin, and Orange County’s vision to pursue integrated enterprise GIS systems, exemplify excellence in GIS.  The Aladin system developed by Orange County is a strong example of successful GIS integration and a model for URISA to share.

  • PSMA Australia’s PSMA System
    Submitted by: Kate Mann, Communications Manager, PSMA Australia, Griffith ACT Australia

This solution was deemed exemplary by the ESIG Review Committee because it involves the engagement, collaboration and partnership between all government in Australia, including federal, six state and two territorial governments, in the delivery of a single system for the creating and facilitating access to national datasets for government, industry and community use. The provision of GIS data by the PSMA system isn’t just a cool GIS project, it actually has a significant impact on the country as a whole as it contributes to a variety of economic, social and environmental benefits.  The PSMA system was developed with the intention of being a world-class system that enables the collection, standardization, integration, manipulation and delivery of GIS data in an automated fashion.  The example of inter-government collaboration and the scale in which PSMA operates and because the PSMA system has revolutionized the manner in which data is gathered, integrated and disseminated make it an exemplary system.

2012 Distinguished System:

  • Will County Master Address Point System
    Submitted by Tong Zhou, Director – GIS Department, County of Will, Joliet, Illinois

URISA congratulates all of the participants in the 2012 Exemplary Systems in Government Award program. For more information and to read each winning and distinguished system submission, visit http://www.urisa.org/2012esig

All of these systems will be celebrated during the Awards Breakfast at GIS-Pro 2012: URISA’s 50th Annual Conference in Portland, Oregon on October 3, 2012.

[Source: URISA press release]

Esri and PCI Geomatics Imagery Grant Program to Support Natural Resources Management

Esri logoGIS and Imagery Software, Data, and Training to Be Awarded for Natural Resources Analysis Projects

Esri, PCI Geomatics, MDA, and RapidEye today announced their new Natural Resources Imagery Grant Program. The grant program will provide software, data, and training for detecting and analyzing land-cover change through the combined use of geographic information system (GIS), image processing, and remote-sensing technologies.

Designed to foster innovative approaches that solve natural resources management problems, the Natural Resources Imagery Grant Program will provide 20 grants valued at $100,000 each. The grant includes the following:

  • Esri GIS software and training
  • PCI Geomatics imagery processing and analysis software and training
  • MDA RADARSAT-2 synthetic aperture radar (SAR) imagery
  • RapidEye 5-meter multispectral imagery

“GIS and image processing are mission-critical technologies in natural resources management,” said Jack Dangermond, president, Esri. “This grant opportunity will help organizations expand their existing imagery or GIS infrastructure and more efficiently support sustainable land-use management.”

Companies, educational institutions, nongovernmental organizations (NGOs), state and regional governments, or tribal governments within the United States may apply. Eligible projects are those that focus on remotely sensed imagery beyond the visible spectrum. Preferred projects will also demonstrate increased efficiency, productivity, or accuracy.

“Technology leaders and innovators should be presented with opportunities to advance their resources projects,” said Terry Maloney, president and CEO, PCI Geomatics. “This imagery grant program will bring solutions to the natural resources industries through inventive and operational use of satellite imagery.”

Applications for the Natural Resources Imagery Grant Program will be accepted beginning in September 2012 and ending November 16, 2012. Learn more at esri.com/imagerygrant.

[Source: Esri press release]

Temporal and Spatial Analysis of Monogenetic Volcanic Fields

University of South Florida, Doctor of Philosophy dissertation, 04 April 2012

Koji Kiyosugi

“Achieving an understanding of the nature of monogenetic volcanic fields depends on identification of the spatial and temporal patterns of volcanism in these fields, and their relationships to structures mapped in the shallow crust and inferred in the deep crust and mantle through interpretation of geochemical, radiometric and geophysical data.

Spatial density maps of volcanic events based on the (a) SAMSE algorithm and (b) LSCV algorithm.

Spatial density maps of volcanic events based on the (a) SAMSE algorithm and (b) LSCV algorithm.

“We investigate the spatial and temporal distributions of volcanism in the Abu Monogenetic Volcano Group, Southwest Japan. E-W elongated volcano distribution, which is identified by a nonparametric kernel method, is found to be consistent with the spatial extent of P-wave velocity anomalies in the lower crust and upper mantle, supporting the idea that the spatial density map of volcanic vents reflects the geometry of a mantle diapir. Estimated basalt supply to the lower crust is constant. This observation and the spatial distribution of volcanic vents suggest stability of magma productivity and essentially constant two-dimensional size of the source mantle diapir.

“We mapped conduits, dike segments, and sills in the San Rafael sub-volcanic field, Utah, where the shallowest part of a Pliocene magmatic system is exceptionally well exposed. The distribution of conduits matches the major features of dike distribution, including development of clusters and distribution of outliers. The comparison of San Rafael conduit distribution and the distributions of volcanoes in several recently active volcanic fields supports the use of statistical models, such as nonparametric kernel methods, in probabilistic hazard assessment for distributed volcanism.

“We developed a new recurrence rate calculation method that uses a Monte Carlo procedure to better reflect and understand the impact of uncertainties of radiometric age determinations on uncertainty of recurrence rate estimates for volcanic activity in the Abu, Yucca Mountain Region, and Izu-Tobu volcanic fields. Results suggest that the recurrence rates of volcanic fields can change by more than one order of magnitude on time scales of several hundred thousand to several million years. This suggests that magma generation rate beneath volcanic fields may change over these time scales. Also, recurrence rate varies more than one order of magnitude between these volcanic fields, consistent with the idea that distributed volcanism may be influenced by both the rate of magma generation and the potential for dike interaction during ascent.”

Improved Support for Landsat Imagery in ArcGIS 10.1

Esri logoGIS Users Can Manipulate and Analyze Esri’s Landsat Imagery Services for Better Use with Geospatial Data

To assist scientists and land and resources managers in evaluating the earth’s changing landscape, Esri announced today that it has further improved support for Landsat imagery, including simplified workflows for ArcGIS 10.1 for Desktop and improvements in the World Landsat Services on ArcGIS Online. In addition, Esri and the Department of the Interior (DOI) worked closely to make all Landsat Global Land Survey (GLS) imagery, including the latest—GLS2010—available through dynamic, multispectral, multitemporal image services on ArcGIS Online.

“Technology barriers are coming down,” said Rachel Headley, PhD, Landsat project, United States Geological Survey (USGS) Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS). “We are now enabling entirely new communities to share and enjoy the views of earth that Landsat has documented for more than four decades.”

Landsat 7, the current earth observation satellite, produces 30-meter-resolution, calibrated, multispectral imagery in 185 x 185-kilometer scenes. The imagery is free for use by everyone and has become a rich data resource for agriculture, forestry, natural resources exploration, and many other industries.

The existing Landsat image services were refined by adding the GLS 2010 dataset and improving the visual quality with radiometric enhancement. Ten services were added including the following:

  • A single service end point that combines 26 separate image services products
  • A service that returns tasseled cap transforms
  • A 15-meter panchromatic image
  • Services for better visualization such as a natural color combined with hillshading

“By combining Landsat imagery with a mashup of multiple data sources available through ArcGIS Online, such as bathymetric, world elevation services, and DeLorme datasets, as well as user-defined content, users can better understand the spatial relationship and interaction of ecosystems and urban development,” said Lawrie Jordan, Esri’s director of imagery. “ArcGIS allows people to analyze and use imagery for more than just an image backdrop to their GIS. It has become an integral part of their analysis of GIS data.”

Esri has also updated the easy-to-use web-based Landsat ChangeMatters viewer for visualizing, analyzing, and detecting change using these image services. For more information on Esri’s support for Landsat imagery, visit esri.com/landsat.

[Source: Esri press release]