NRC Releases New Report on USGS Spatial Data Infrastructure

Official United States Geological Survey Logo

Official United States Geological Survey Logo (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Science is increasingly driven by data, and spatial data underpin the science directions laid out in the 2007 U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) Science Strategy. A robust framework of spatial data, metadata, tools, and a user community that is interactively connected to use spatial data in an efficient and flexible way–known as a spatial data infrastructure (SDI)–must be available for scientists and managers to find, use, and share spatial data both within and beyond the USGS. Over the last decade, the USGS has conducted breakthrough research that has overcome some of the challenges associated with implementing a large SDI. This report is intended to ground those efforts by providing a practical roadmap to full implementation of an SDI to enable the USGS to conduct strategic science.

For a PDF copy of the National Academies of Science / National Research Council Mapping Science Committee’s Report, visit: Advancing Strategic Science: A Spatial Data Infrastructure Roadmap for the US Geological Survey

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2 responses to “NRC Releases New Report on USGS Spatial Data Infrastructure”

  1. Chris Trent (@Packherd) says :

    This report cites the National Biological Information Infrastructure, or NBII, as one of the spatial data initiatives at the USGS. The NRC report is copyrighted in 2012, becoming available in October.

    The NBII, however, ceased operations in January of 2012. News of the shut down was circulated widely. See the following Library of Congress post.

    The elimination of NBII had been included in the President’s Budget, released in February 2011, and was approved by Congress in it’s omnibus appropriations in December of that year.

    The NRC report does not mention any of this. In fact, it speaks of NBII in the present tense, implying that it is an on-going function of the USGS.

    • Geodata Policy says :

      Thank you, Chris, for pointing this out. There is a relatively new effort called NEON (National Ecological Observatory Network, which may be relevant here: “The National Ecological Observatory Network (NEON) is a continental-scale observatory designed to gather and provide 30 years of ecological data on the impacts of climate change, land use change and invasive species on natural resources and biodiversity. NEON is a project of the National Science Foundation, with many other U.S. agencies and NGOs cooperating. All NEON data and information products will be freely available via the Web. NEON’s open-access approach to its data and information products will enable scientists, educators, planners, decision makers and the public to map, understand and predict the effects of human activities on ecology and effectively address critical ecological questions and issues.”

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