GIS Day: Using maps to discover the world

gis-dayGeographic information systems (GIS) have the ability to show many different kinds of data on one map, allowing us to understand patterns and relationships through various applications within society. Visualizing the world through GIS captures, stores, analyzes, and presents information that can be applied to real-world situations.

As part of Geography Awareness Week, the Geospatial Centroid at Colorado State University is celebrating GIS Day on Nov. 18. Join members of the geospatial community for a day filled with posters, presentations, and a Humanitarian Mapathon. All events are free and open to the CSU community. Registration is preferred, but guests may come and go as schedules permit.

“We are trying to encourage the public to think of Earth as one, and this technology allows us to do that,” said Sophia Linn, assistant director of the Geospatial Centroid. “GIS is more than education, it is about technology being used in all walks of life and industries.”

A Geospatial Poster Gallery will be displayed all week in the Morgan Library First National Bank Gallery.

Day full of events

The GIS Day activities will begin at 10 a.m. Wednesday in the Morgan Library Event Hall with discussions of partnerships and projects. Speakers include CSU’s Alternative Transportation Manager Aaron Fodge, Martha Coleman of Facilities Management, Jared Orsi of the Department of History, and Chris Geanious from The Institute for Learning and Teaching (TILT).

After a break from 11 to 11:15 a.m., keynote speaker Robert E. Roth of the University of Wisconsin, Madison, will be discussing “Designing Useful and Usable GIS and Mapping Technologies.” Roth’s presentation will run from 11:15 a.m. to noon.

From 12:15 to 1:30 p.m., lunch will be provided with GIS professionals and experts as table hosts. Various table topics include field data collection, landscape analysis, remote sensing, urban and rural land use/cover change, open data and humanitarian mapping, GIS in business, GIS in health, GIS for utilities and public works, among others.

At 1:30 p.m., speakers will discuss additional partnerships and projects including the National Park Service with Kerry Shakarjian and Eric Delynko; U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service with Allen Gilbert; NASA Develop Fall 2015 with Eric Rounds; Colorado View with Maxwell Cook and Mike Coughenour; Fulcrum and CartoDB with Katrina Engelsted; and an introduction to OpenStreetMap, HOT and the Mapathon with Mike Thompson.

From 4 to 6 p.m., the Colorado State University Humanitarian Mapathon will join craft beer and craft maps in the Lory Student Center Ramskeller. Bring a laptop and help map the world during this time. Open to anyone, guests can learn how to submit new features to OpenStreetMap in support of their humanitarian efforts.

There are almost 1,000 GIS Day events happening around the globe for Geography Awareness Week. To find additional information about GIS Day or the Geospatial Centroid, visit or call (970) 491-2774.