Tag Archive | Earth Science

New NRC Report: Future U.S. Workforce for Geospatial Intelligence

Mapping Sciences Committee, National Research Council Preview Report Release, Jan 2013

Authors:
Committee on the Future U.S. Workforce for Geospatial Intelligence; Board on Earth Sciences and Resources; Board on Higher Education and Workforce; Division on Earth and Life Studies; National Research Council

Abstract: We live in a changing world with multiple and evolving threats to national security, including terrorism, asymmetrical warfare (conflicts between agents with different military powers or tactics), and social unrest. Visually depicting and assessing these threats using imagery and other geographically-referenced information is the mission of the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA). As the nature of the threat evolves, so do the tools, knowledge, and skills needed to respond. The challenge for NGA is to maintain a workforce that can deal with evolving threats to national security, ongoing scientific and technological advances, and changing skills and expectations of workers.

Future U.S. Workforce for Geospatial Intelligence assesses the supply of expertise in 10 geospatial intelligence (GEOINT) fields, including 5 traditional areas (geodesy and geophysics, photogrammetry, remote sensing, cartographic science, and geographic information systems and geospatial analysis) and 5 emerging areas that could improve geospatial intelligence (GEOINT fusion, crowdsourcing, human geography, visual analytics, and forecasting). The report also identifies gaps in expertise relative to NGA’s needs and suggests ways to ensure an adequate supply of geospatial intelligence expertise over the next 20 years.

To download a PDF copy of the report, visit Future U.S. Workforce for Geospatial Intelligence.

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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

India’s Government unveils new Remote Sensing Data Policy

From the GSDI announcements:

PTI, Jul 5, 2011

The government has unveiled a new remote sensing data policy which allows all data of resolutions up to 1 meter to be distributed on a non-discriminatory basis and on “as requested basis”. The Remote Sensing Data Policy 2011 (RSDP 2011) replaces a 2001 policy which allowed all data of resolutions up to 5.8 metres to be distributed on non-discriminatory and “as requested” basis. The RSDP 2011, apart from opening up the remote sensing sector, will remove certain restrictions to facilitate more users to access high resolution data for developmental activities. …

For full text of the article, visit Government unveils new Remote Sensing Data Policy – India – DNA.

USGS Requests Public Input on Six Science Strategies

USGS Logo

Image via Wikipedia

The United States Geological Survey (USGS) is requesting public input on its six science strategies: Ecosystems; Energy and Minerals; Environmental Health; Global Change; Natural Hazards; and Water. These strategies will used in setting priorities and implementation planning for future research activities at the agency, which was reorganized in 2010.

Please weigh in on the draft and questions here.

Some of the USGS programs that support these science strategies include:

Federal Geographic Data Committee (FGDC)
The Federal Geographic Data Committee is an interagency committee that promotes the coordinated development, use, sharing, and dissemination of geospatial data on a national basis. This nationwide data publishing effort is known as the National Spatial Data Infrastructure (NSDI). The NSDI is a physical, organizational, and virtual network designed to enable the development and sharing of this nation’s digital geographic information resources. FGDC activities are administered through the FGDC Secretariat, hosted by the U.S. Geological Survey.

Land Remote Sensing (LRS)
The Land Remote Sensing Program operates the Landsat satellites and provides the Nation’s portal to the largest archive of remotely sensed land data in the world, supplying access to current and historical images. These images serve many purposes from assessing the impact of natural disasters to monitoring global agricultural production.

National Geospatial Program
The National Geospatial Program (NGP) organizes, maintains, and publishes the geospatial baseline of the Nation’s topography, natural landscape, and built environment.  The baseline is The National Map, a set of databases of map data and information from which customers can download data and derived map products and use web-based map services.  Through the Geospatial Liaison Network, the NGP works with cooperators to share the costs of acquiring and maintaining these geospatial data. The National Atlas of the United States of America®, the small-scale component of The National Map, fosters an understanding of broad geographic patterns, trends, and conditions useful for national assessments. The Federal Geographic Data Committee promotes consistent data and metadata standards, system interoperability, and cross-government best business practices for geospatial resources, policies, standards, and technology as part of the National Spatial Data Infrastructure.

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Senate Commerce Committee Hearing on NASA Budget

Realizing NASA’s Potential: Programmatic Challenges in the 21st Century

NASA

Tuesday, Mar 15 2011 2:30 PM, Russell Senate Office Building – Room 253, Washington, D.C.

The U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation announces the following full committee hearing titled, Realizing NASA’s Potential: Programmatic Challenges in the 21st Century. Witnesses include: Mr. Douglas R. Cooke Associate Administrator, Exploration Systems Mission Directorate; Mr. William Gerstenmaier, Associate Administrator, Space Operations Mission Directorate; Mr. Leland D. Melvin, Associate Administrator, Education; Dr. Jaiwon Shin, Associate Administrator, Aeronautics Research Mission Directorate; Dr. Edward J. Weiler, Associate Administrator, Science Mission Directorate; Dr. Woodrow Whitlow Jr., Associate Administrator, Mission Support Directorate.

 

Two High-priority Climate Missions Dropped from NASA’s Budget Plans

By Turner Brinton, Space News, February 25, 2011

WASHINGTON — Even though NASA’s Earth science budget is slated to rise next year, the U.S. space agency has been ordered by the White House to shelve a pair of big-ticket climate change missions that just last year were planned for launch by 2017. With U.S. President Barack Obama under pressure to rein in federal spending, the White House eliminated funding for the Climate Absolute Radiance and Refractivity Observatory (CLARREO) and Deformation, Ecosystem Structure and Dynamics of Ice (DESDynI) missions, Steve Volz, associate director for flight programs at NASA’s Earth Science Division, said in a Feb. 24 interview. The multiyear budget plan NASA sent Congress a year ago called for spending $1.2 billion between 2012 and 2015 to develop CLARREO and DESDynI, two of the four top-tier missions recommended by the National Research Council’s 2007 Earth Science decadal survey.  …

For full text of the article, visit: Two High priority Climate Missions Dropped from NASAs Budget Plans | SpaceNews.com.

Earth Science Information Partners Winter Conference Next Week

The Earth Science Information Partners is having conference is from January 4 – 6, 2011 in Washington, DC.

ESIP is: “a diverse network of scientists, data stewards and technology developers that:

  • Improves access to Earth science data and information.
  • Connects public, academic and private providers to each other and users of Earth science data and information.
  • Promotes consensus-based solutions and best practices affecting the Earth science data and information community
  • Provides a neutral forum for Earth science data experts to collaborate, learn and solve communitywide problems affecting access, dissemination and use of Earth science data and information.”

Find the Conference Description and Agenda from the ESIP webpage.

Topics include Data Preservation and Stewardship, Semantic Web, Data Search, Interoperability, Program Evaluation, Climate Change Education, Climate and Energy Policy and User Requirements, Cloud Computing, Air Quality, and more.

Getting to Know the Mapping Science Committee of the National Research Council

Getting to Know the Mapping Science Committee

by Keith Clarke, Chair, Mapping Sciences Committee, the National Research Council

Important to the GIScience research community and agenda, especially as far as the federal government is concerned, is the Mapping Sciences Committee (MSC), a standing committee of the Board on Earth Science Resources of the National Research Council. What is this committee; where did it come from; what are its activities and responsibilities; and how do they impact the world of geographic information science, especially with regard to research and development? In this essay, the current MSC chair attempts to answer these questions and reveal MSC as a unique and important vehicle for advancing the science relating to geographic information in the United States.

For full text of the article, click here.

Source: ESRI ArcNews, Fall 2010

 

See also the following websites for more information:

Recent Mapping Related Reports

  • Geodesy is the science of accurately measuring Earth’s shape, orientation in space, and gravity field, and changes in these parameters over time. Geodetic techniques and instrumentation have enabled scientists to determine the changing position of any point on Earth with centimeter accuracy or better. They also provide the underpinnings for surveying and navigation, determining flood maps, measuring sea level rise, assessing groundwate… More >>
  • Mapping the Zone: Improving Flood Map Accuracy (2009) Flooding is the leading cause of natural disaster in the United States. High-quality, digital mapping is essential to communicating flood hazards to those at risk, setting appropriate insurance rates, and regulating development in flood-prone areas. As the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) nears the end of its Map Modernization Program, the agency, along with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, asked the Nationa… More >> Report in Brief
  • National Land Parcel Data: A Vision for the Future (2007) Land parcel data (also known as cadastral data) provides geographically-referenced information about the rights, interests, and ownership of land and are an important part of the financial, legal and real estate systems of society. The data are used by governments to make decisions about land development, business activities, regulatory compliance, emergency response, and law enforcement. In 1980, a National Research Council report called fo… More >> Report in Brief
  • A Research Agenda for Geographic Information Science at the United States Geological Survey (2007) Comprehensive and authoritative baseline geospatial data content is crucial to the nation and to the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS). The USGS founded its Center of Excellence for Geospatial Information Science (CEGIS) in 2006 to develop and distribute national geospatial data assets in a fast-moving information technology environment. In order to fulfill this mission, the USGS asked the National Research Council to assess current GIScienc… More >>
  • Successful Response Starts with a Map: Improving Geospatial Support for Disaster Management (2007) In the past few years the United States has experienced a series of disasters, such as Hurricane Katrina in 2005, which have severely taxed and in many cases overwhelmed responding agencies. In all aspects of emergency management, geospatial data and tools have the potential to help save lives, limit damage, and reduce the costs of dealing with emergencies. Great strides have been made in the past four decades in the development of geospatia… More >>
  • Elevation Data for Floodplain Mapping* (2007) Floodplain maps serve as the basis for determining whether homes or buildings require flood insurance under the National Flood Insurance Program run by the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). Approximately $650 billion in insured assets are now covered under the program. Under a funded mandate from Congress, FEMA is modernizing floodplain maps to better serve the program. However, concerns have been raised to Congress as to the adequac… More >>
  • Beyond Mapping: Meeting National Needs Through Enhanced Geographic Information Science (2006) Geographic information systems (GIS), the Global Positioning System (GPS), remote sensing, and other information technologies have all changed the nature of work in the mapping sciences and in the professions, industries, and institutions that depend on them for basic research and education. Today, geographic information systems have become central to the ways thousands of government agencies, private companies, and not-for-profit organization… More >>
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