Tag Archive | Economic

Registration still open for Workshop on Socio-economic Benefits of Geospatial Info/GEOSS

The Workshop on the Socio-economic Benefits of Geospatial Information/GEOSS is set to take place from June 12-14 in Boulder, Colorado. Registration is still open. Geospatial information, whether derived from Earth observation sources or elsewhere, can be an important tool in approaching the many challenges we face on the local, regional, and global level. Those include assessing food security, flooding, air quality, disasters, and more. Effective uses of this information can assist in decision-making to enhance the social and economic well-being of communities. The workshop, at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), Foothills Campus, will review quantitative and socioeconomic methods for assessing and communicating the value of geospatial information

For full text of the article, vitist The Latest on the Socio-economic Workshop in Boulder | Earthzine.

New CRS Report: Foreign Assistance: Public Private-Partnerships

United States Agency for International Development

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Marian Leonardo Lawson
Analyst in Foreign Assistance
Congressional Research Service

June 13, 2011

SUMMARY: The flow of private sector resources to developing countries has increased significantly in recent decades. Seeking opportunity in this changing environment, government development assistance agencies such as the U.S. Agency for International Development and the State Department are  working with private sector entities in unprecedented ways to determine when and if such partnerships can lead to improved development results. As explained in the Obama Administration’s 2010 Quadrennial Diplomacy and Development Review (QDDR), “private sector partners can add value to our missions through their resources, their capacity to establish presence in places we cannot, through the technologies, networks, and contacts they can tap, and through their specialized expertise or knowledge.” More than 1,000 such partnerships, involving more than 3,000 private entities, have been established since 2001.

Potential Benefits of and Concerns About Partnerships
Modern public-private partnerships (PPPs), characterized by joint planning, joint contributions, and shared risk, are viewed by many development experts as an opportunity to leverage resources, mobilize industry expertise and networks, and bring fresh ideas to development projects. Partnering with the private sector is also widely believed to increase the likelihood thatprograms will continue after government aid has ended. From the private sector perspective, partnering with a government agency can bring development expertise and resources, access to government officials, credibility, and scale.

Nearly 10 years after the formation of USAID’s Global Development Alliance (GDA), PPPs for development have received mixed reviews. PPPs require significant effort to create and manage, and critics argue that inadequate data exist to demonstrate that these efforts are the most effective way to use limited development resources. Others have expressed concern about partnerships diverting resources away from proven development programs or recipients. Still others are concerned that PPPs, particularly those involving corporate partners and focusing on trade and economic growth, may lead to outsourcing of U.S. jobs. Partnership proponents have varying views as well. Some feel that the goal of mainstreaming the PPP model as a tool for development has been achieved and they are ready to declare victory and move on, while others contend that the potential for using PPPs in development has only begun to be realized and that expanded partnerships are the future of development assistance.

Issues for Congress and the Scope of This Report
To date, the movement toward this “new generation of partnerships,” as it has been called by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, has been driven by successive administrations with limited congressional involvement. However, recent reviews of U.S. foreign assistance policy, through the QDDR and a Presidential Study Directive on Global Development Policy, may spur congressional action on foreign assistance reform in the 112th Congress. As part of this effort, Congress may consider several issues that affect or are affected by the use of PPPs, including budget and procurement policies, interagency leadership, international commitments, and the role of aid within broader development policy. This report discusses the evolution of private sector involvement in U.S. foreign assistance programs over recent decades, how globalization has driven the modern approach to development partnerships, potential benefits and drawbacks of PPPs, and how partnerships are being used by other bilateral donors and multilateral development Foreign Assistance: Public-Private Partnerships (PPPs) agencies. The report then discusses partnership-related issues that may be of interest to Congress as part of the foreign assistance authorization and reform process.

For full text of the report, visit the Federation of American Scientists’ website:


Federal Research and Development in the FY 2011 Budget Compromise

On Monday, April 11, the U.S. House of Representatives introduced the bill to fund the federal government for the last half of FY 2011. This bill will be taken up in the House on April 13th and in the Senate on April 14th, and then sent to the President for his signature, hopefully before the midnight deadline on Friday, April 15th. If passed, non-defense funding levels will be reduced by a 0.2 percent across-the-board cut to achieve savings of approximately $1.1 billion. Specific details on programmatic cuts for Federal R&D can be found in the articles blow:

Text of the Legislation:

A summary of the legislation:


R&D in the FY 2011 Compromise

by Patrick Clemins, Ph.D., AAAS R&D Budget and Policy Program, April 13, 2011

Congress released their year-long continuing resolution for FY 2011 this morning which contains a total of around $38.5 billion in cuts, the largest collection of spending cuts in history. R&D intensive programs and agencies were spared the worst of the cuts. Basic research programs faired the best, while applied research programs, especially at the Department of Energy did less well, accurately reflecting the current policy debates taking place. Basic research generally has broad, bi-partisan support, but there is discussion as to how much the federal government should be involved in applied research and the role of industry in funding the applied research stage of the innovation pipeline.

For full text of the article and other related resources, visit: http://www.aaas.org/spp/rd/


FYI #48: Details of Final FY 2011 Appropriations Bill Emerging

By Richard Jones, American Institute of Physics

Total FY 2011 funding will be $78.5 billion less than that requested by the Obama Administration. … A release from the Senate Appropriations Committee states, “as these cuts must be implemented in just the remaining six months of the fiscal year, their impact will be especially painful in some instances.” The below figures, provided by the House Appropriations Committee, do not include the 0.2 percent across the board cut that was made to all non-defense accounts.  In all instances, reductions from current FY 2010 levels are shown, and the numbers are rounded.  It should also be noted that the House Appropriations statement explains: “This list contains highlighted program cuts. This list is not comprehensive of all program funding levels in the legislation.”

National Science Foundation
Research and Related Activities: Down $43 million
Education and Human Resources: Down $10 million

National Aeronautics and Space Administration
Education: Down $38 million
Cross Agency Support: Down $83 million

U.S. Geological Survey: Down $26 million

For full text of the article, visit: http://www.aip.org/fyi/2011/048.html

Grand Challenges in Geospatial Science Research

The  Directorate for the Social, Behavioral, and Economic Sciences of the National Science Foundation (NSF/SBE) seeks to frame innovative research for the year 2020 and beyond that enhances fundamental knowledge and benefits society. NSF/SBE invited individuals and groups to contribute white papers in which authors were asked to outline grand challenge questions that are both foundational and transformative. At the conclusion of the submission period on October 15, 2010, 244 unique papers were received covering the full range of the SBE sciences.

The University Consortium for Geographic Information Science (UCGIS) submitted the following white paper on spatial dynamics and CyberGIS. The UCGIS Winter Meeting:  Place-Based Geospatial Summit will be held at the Doubletree Hotel in Washington, DC on February 3rd and 4th, 2011. For registration and the agenda, click here.


Spatial Dynamics and CyberGIS for NSF SBE 2020

Lead Author: Yuan, May

Abstract: University Consortium for Geographic Information Science (UCGIS) advocates that spatial dynamics and cyberGIS be identified as two grand research challenges for SBE 2020. Spatial dynamics and cyberGIS ask fundamental questions about the complexity, dynamics, and synthesis of social, behavioral, and economic systems. Making connections across space and time enables knowledge building beyond disciplinary boundaries to understand how new findings in one discipline relate to another for a holistic understanding of human dimensions. Expanding upon the spatial emphasis in geographic information science research, spatial dynamics research investigates cognitive and methodological advances to conceptualize, represent, analyze, and model the integrative spatiotemporal characteristics and processes of global systems. CyberGIS research enables a synthesis framework leveraging GIS and cyberinfrastructure to build a collaborative cybercommons of distributed benchmark datasets, computational testbeds, and knowledge webs for social, behavioral, and economic sciences. The fact that social network media is expanding rapidly and being accessed by a broad spectrum of society, and new generations of digital natives are stepping up to take center stage, gives unprecedented opportunities to allow real-time or near-real time spatially referenced data for SBE research. Grand research challenges of spatial dynamics and cyberGIS, both individually and more effectively together, are essential to understand spatial connections of activities, events, and processes across scales and dimensions for a cyber SBE knowledge enterprise with capabilities for SBE forecasting and predictions, and even nowcasting enabled by sensor networks, cell phone signals, or twitters.

For full text of the article, click here.


Other geospatial-related white papers submitted to NSF SBE 2020:

Public Sector Information Policies and their Economic Impacts

Borders in Cyberspace: Conflicting Public Sector Information Policies and their Economic Impacts

This summary report by Peter Weiss (February 2002) offers a comparison between the PSI re-use market within the US and Europe and how the impact that the different policy approaches on access, copyright and re-use related to PSI has impacted the PSI re-use market. The report seeks to demonstrate the economic and social benefits of open access and dissemination policies for public sector information, particularly as opposed to the limitations of the “cost recovery ” or  “government commercialisation” approach. The report offers good coverage of conclusions of recent economic and public policy research, as well as examples of failed or limited cost recovery experiments in the US and Europe.

Building a National Spatial Data Infrastructure 2.0

In the United States, a lively discussion is emerging on the next generation of the National Spatial Data Infrastructure, with a  focus on its governance and coordination. Below are links to articles, reports and editorials on this topic:

National Geospatial Advisory Council Reports

Federal Geographic Data Committee Reports and Presentations

2009 Proposals for a “National GIS”



NSDI Related Legislation and Hearings


Congressional Oversight Hearings:

Congressional Research Service (CRS) Reports to Congress:

Government Accountability Office (GAO) Reports to Congress and Testimony:

Executive Orders, Regulations and Guidelines

Executive Orders:

OMB Circulars and Memos:

FGDC Policies and Guidelines

The Geospatial Platform

NSDI-related Reports and Publications

National Academy of Public Administration Reports:

National Academy of Sciences Reports (PDFs are now free; for full list of Mapping Science Committee reports click here):

Academic Studies:

  • A Policy Appraisal of the National Map, A Federal Program to Provide Basic Geospatial Data For the Nation (Maeve A. Boland, PhD Dissertation, 2005) 

Earth Observation Governance, Priorities and Benefit to Society:

If you know of additional related documents or commentaries, please email us the links!

DISCLAIMER: The opinions expressed in the links and resources listed above are not necessarily those of this blog site.

U.S. Economic Stimulus Projects and Geospatial Technology


Economic Stimulus Project areas that may create GIS/Geo Tech Opportunities  

Like many of you, we haven’t really had time to go through the entire 1,071 page Detailed List of Spending – you can view and download the entire document at ProRepublica We did take a little time, however, to go through this fine summary provided by ProPublica. The following were some of the spending items of interest that may indeed have a direct or indirect effect on GIS and geospatial technologies…[More]

Source: Glenn Letham (@gletham) Monday, 16 February 2009, GISUser.Com

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