KU to host tenth annual symposium on GIS and mapping November 16

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

On November 16, the University of Kansas will host the tenth annual GIS Day @ KU, part of an international celebration that recognizes practical applications and technological innovations in geographic information systems (GIS).

This symposium, which will be held from 8:30 a.m. to 5 p.m. on the fourth floor of the Kansas Union, is free and open to the public. GIS Day @ KU will include talks on various topics related to GIS and mapping, an information and job fair and a student presentation competition. Last year’s event attracted close to 300 people from academia, the private sector and government.

GIS technologies allow users to create, store and analyze spatially referenced data and imagery. Users can then share that information with maps and charts, sometimes via the Internet. GIS combines the visual appeal and effectiveness of a map with the power of information, i.e., the database linked to the map.

GIS Day @ KU will include presentations by GIS experts from KU, Haskell Indian Nations University and the University of Nebraska, on topics including GIS in indigenous communities, using Internet mapping for natural resource planning and management, and geo-computational intelligence.

GIS Day @ KU is sponsored by KU Libraries, the KU Geography Department, the KU Institute for Policy & Social Research, the State of Kansas Data Access and Support Center (DASC), the KU Biodiversity Institute and several other KU academic departments and regional companies.

KU Libraries is a campus partner in facilitating the GIS and mapping-related research of KU students, staff and faculty through the Center for Digital Scholarship. The GIS and Data Lab in Anschutz Library provides assistance finding and working with geospatial data, as well as workshops and other instructional resources.

“GIS Day @ KU provides a rare opportunity for people from numerous disciplines in academia, from local to state to federal government, from non-profits and from the private sector to mix and mingle, and talk maps and data,” said Rhonda Houser, GIS specialist in KU Libraries.

"Attendees and topics covered at the symposium are diverse, yet may share approaches to projects and research," Houser said. "GIS is used across campus for research and teaching in fields ranging from ecology to social welfare to history. We hope to highlight the varied uses of this tool across campus and around the world, and provide a forum for participants to discuss and discover the possibilities of GIS.”

Those interested may attend part or all of the symposium. For a detailed schedule and to register, visit www.gis.ku.edu/gisday/2011.

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