Your Monthly URISA News & Updates
#GISPro2020 Update

The URISA staff and GIS-Pro 2020 planning committee are discussing and researching 'Plan B', if necessary, for the conference in Baltimore. 

We have amazing education and exciting events on the agenda.  But with so much uncertainty about the pandemic, travel restrictions, safety and all of the other unknowns during this time, it is looking more likely that the conference will be presented, at least in part, virtually. 

We recently asked members to take a survey about travel restrictions and cuts by your organization. The results will allow our leadership to make an informed decision regarding upcoming events and how best to proceed. Your feedback is greatly valued.  If you have not yet done so, please proceed to the survey  
#GISforGood Continues with GISCorps

URISA's GISCorps continues to amaze. Check out the numerous COVID-19 projects that hundreds of volunteers are collaborating on, from telling stories about those lost to the virus to learning about wait times and inventory at grocery stores near you.

Find out the closest facility that is doing COVID-19 antibody testing, hours of operation, and other important characteristics of testing sites. (Click on the image below)

With the NAPSG Foundation Crowdsourcing application expanding to earthquakes and tornado events, as well as being on standby for the 2020 hurricane season, GISCorps volunteers are busy and ready. Christina Brunsvold, John Haddad, and Dacey Zelman-Fahm are continuing as Admins for the team, along with new member, Alicia Tyson from Alabama. Erin Arkison will be working with German Whitley leading the Disaster Response Subcommittee.  The team continues to evolve the apps and dashboards as well as improving and refining workflows for different types of disaster events.

While you're inspired, think about donating to support URISA's GISCorps so they can continue their selfless volunteer efforts.Donations are tax deductible and so very appreciated.

Your GIS Professional Home - Two Webinars Next Week

URISA committees are continuing to develop events to help us stay connected and engaged through this difficult time.  We hosted a Pandemic GIS Panel last month, during which we heard perspectives and challenges from GIS leaders in Cuyahoga County (Ohio), Los Angeles County (California), the  City of Sioux Falls, South Dakota, and New Orleans (Louisiana). It was a fantastic session. 

On June 2, we'll have an opportunity to learn about U.S. Digital Response, a nonpartisan effort that connects experienced, pro bono technology teams to public servants responding to the COVID-19 crisis. 

On June 4, we'll host an NG 911 & GIS: Ask the Experts PanelAre you somewhere between planning and deployment of an NG9-1-1 system or possibly working to standardize or synchronize your data? Members of our NextGen 9-1-1 Task Force are ready to answer your burning NG questions.

(There might be a progressive URISA Mappy Hour that same afternoon. Hear about chapter activities and network with your fellow members from the East Coast to the West Coast.) 

Other webinars and virtual events in the works include a panel on Contact Tracing and another on the Supply Chain. 

For registration and details, visit 
Webinar: GPS at Risk - June 9

We're thrilled to co-host this free webinar with XyHt and Esri on June 9. 

When: T uesday, Jun 9, 2020 at 12 Noon Eastern/11 AM Central/10 AM Mountain/9 AM Pacific 

Overview: On April 16, 2020 the FCC, Federal Communications Commission Chairman Ajit Pai drafted an order that would approve Ligado's (formerly LightSquared) application to deploy a low powered L-Band network despite objections from the Department of Defense, private industry, and geospatial professionals. Tests show that implementing Ligado's proposal would drastically disrupt Global Positioning System (GPS) as we now know it.

Learn more about the implications. 

Panelists include:
Dr. Stuart Riley: Riley received a Ph.D. in electrical engineering at the University of Leeds (United Kingdom) where he then worked as a research fellow in 1994-5. After that, he joined Trimble Navigation Ltd. as a GNSS receiver designer. He is based in Sunnyvale, California, where since 2010 he has served as the company's engineering director.

Karen Van Dyke:  As the U.S. DOT Volpe Center's principal technical advisor for Global Positioning Systems (GPS), Karen serves as Director for Positioning, Navigation, and Timing (PNT) and Spectrum Management in the U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT) Office of the Assistant Secretary for Research and Technology.

Connect for Support, Solutions, and Opportunities

Have you connected yet? Pose a question, discuss best practices, share a job posting, or ask for guidance from your fellow members. 

Join any of the  online communities  in which you have an interest. There are
communities dedicated to:  GIS Leadership & Management, Preparing for your GISP, Policy & Professional Advocacy, Young & Emerging Professionals, GIS in Health & Human Services, and Community Resilience. Or start a new community on a topic of importance to you!

URISA's Young Professionals are Leading the Way

Check out the latest URISA Vanguard Cabinet and Directions Magazine collaboration, focused on Open Source GIS. View/Listen to it here

They also completed a study about the importance of LinkedIn profiles.
Check out their dashboard and findings.

Leadership Opportunity

URISA is seeking a qualified volunteer to lead an important new education initiative. URISA currently offers a one-day workshop that provides guidance on successfully creating a GISP portfolio and preparing for the GISP exam. With the increasing popularity of that workshop, along with growing recognition of the value of the GISP credential, URISA now wishes to build on the success of that effort. The volunteer that leads this initiative will collaborate with a team of content developers and instructors and develop a new virtual offering, as well as revise the current traditional classroom workshop offerings. 

The ideal candidate for this position will be a practicing GISP with a proven ability to develop and lead teams of volunteers. While this position does not necessarily require curriculum design, development, or instruction, a background that includes these skills is preferred.

Participation on a committee can be one of the most enjoyable and rewarding benefits of being a URISA member. If you are interested in exploring this volunteer opportunity or would like to recommend a qualified candidate, please contact the URISA Professional Education Committee Associate Chair, Matt Gerike.
URISA Advocacy - a busy month of May 

At its May 13, 2020 meeting the URISA Board voted to partner with the University Consortium for Geographic Information Science (UCGIS) and the American Association of Geographers (AAG) to submit a public comment expressing our opposition to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) proposed Strengthening Transparency in Regulatory Science rule. This rule would minimize any research that does not make their raw data publicly available when the EPA considers new regulations. The rule would also allow the EPA to review current regulations formulated with research whose data is not public.

While URISA supports open research and data when possible, there is important research that contains personally identifiable medical and location information, as well as proprietary data, that cannot be made public. Although the amended rule allows some discretion by the EPA, it provides no criteria for its use. 

May 2020 - URISA signed onto a Census Project stakeholder letter urging support for $1.681 billion for the Census Bureau in FY 2021 and raising awareness of the Bureau's potential need for supplemental funding due to the ongoing COVID-10 pandemic.

May 21, 2020 - As part of the Coalition of Geospatial Organizations and individually, URISA signed on to a letter to the U.S. Senate Committee on Armed Services that strongly opposes the recent FCC Order that approved the Ligado Networks L-Band application. (See the June 9 GPS at Risk webinar)

URISA's Policy Advisory Committee is active and looking out for GIS professionals! Get involved on URISA Connect!

Celebrate your Geospatial Accomplishments

Have you and your team successfully improved the way in which government operates through the use of geospatial information technology?  

Submissions are invited in two categories:
  • 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.
  • Single Process Systems: Systems in this category are outstanding and working examples of applying information system technology to automate a specific SINGLE process or operation involving one department or sub-unit of an agency. The system application results in extended and/or improved government services that are more efficient and/or save money.
Applications are due on or before June 1.

Get inspired by previous winners who have shared videos and testimonials and review the history of ESIG winners celebrated on this story map. 
Participate in this Global Survey for UN-Habitat

At this time when the global pandemic has changed the course of our lives in one way or another, it is imperative that we get a clear understanding of the effects that the virus has not just at the global scale but in relation to every individual, neighborhood and community. Your Voice Counts! 

Please share with us your experiences and make a contribution to the UN-Habitat's COVID-19 response efforts. Your feedback will help us make more responsive measures in our emergency response activities.

We Need your Help.

We sincerely thank you for devoting 1 minute of your time to become a change maker.

Thank you in advance for your participation and contribution!
URISA GIS Leadership Academy Updates

We recently contacted the individuals who had registered to attend the GLA scheduled to take place in Minneapolis in ear ly June to let them know that, due to COVID-19 health and safety concerns, we decided to postpone the program to the same week in 2021. 

At this time, the two other offerings in 2020 are still on the calendar (Portland and St. Pete). Of course, we're monitoring the situation  and will certainly postpone and reschedule if necessary. Know that your registration will be refunded or transferred to another GLA, if that occurs.

Further, the GLA committee is actively working on 'virtualizing' the program to provide instructor-led online GIS leadership training. Stay tuned for news and updates!

For registration and venue information,  click here

Great recent testimonial from a GLA graduate: 
"That week in Austin put me on a different path in life and was totally worth every dollar it took to attend."
GIS Code of Ethics

Did you know that URISA approved a GIS Code of Ethics in 2003? It was subsequently adopted by the GIS Certification Institute. Couldn't hurt to re-read it periodically. We're also planning a GIS Ethics virtual panel and some more case studies. We also discuss about GIS Ethics quite a bit in the GIS Leadership Academy.  

The Code consists of these four primary categories:
I.   Obligations to Society
II.  Obligations to Employers and Funders
III. Obligations to Colleagues and the Profession
IV. Obligations to Individuals in Society
Amazon Smile Donations

Doing more online shopping while social distancing? Amazon donates to URISA when you shop via Amazon Smile.

Bookmark the Link  and support us every time you shop.
GIS Management Material

Extremely popular, the second edition of The GIS Management Handbook is a major update of Pete Croswell's 2009 publication.  Required reading in many upper level college/university GIS courses.

"The second edition of The GIS Management Handbook is a tour de force for all engaged in planning, implementing and managing geographic information systems programs and projects. This book covers the core concepts as well as the nitty gritty details and as such, provides an essential reference for those who aspire and work every day to use geographic information to solve problems and seize the opportunities they are afforded to improve the world around us"
. - Dr. John P. Wilson, Professor and Founding Director, Spatial Sciences Institute, University of Southern California

Check out the details and order your copy today.
URISA Logo Apparel

Long sleeve, short sleeve, cardigans, and pullover fleece, check out the URISA Logo Store! 

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