Geographic Information Systems are being adopted all over the world.
Although the world powers, such as the United Kingdom, Japan and United States, have used GIS technology for decades now, many smaller governments are using United Nations monies or earmarking funds to install GIS technology into their governments.
In Pakistan, the city of Harsadda recently installed its first GIS systems laboratory for the digitization of land records. Under the UN’s Pakistan Settlements Flood Recovery Project, the GIS project will help minimize land disputes from the 2010 flood when land records were washed away.
In Kohima, the hilly capital of India’s northeastern border state of Nagaland, recently held a day-long workshop to instruct government officials on how to use GIS for planning at the state, district and block levels. Leading the workshop were several government agencies and the Nagaland GIS, a special Department of Planning & Coordination group to implement GIS in India. Nagaland’s objectives include, among other initiatives: “To create a digital database on the state of human scenario of the state in terms of demography, literacy level, occupation, human development index and quality of life.”
Another India GIS program, “the National Project on Aquifer Management,” launched in New Delhi October 8. According to the TimesofIndia.com, Surendra Nath Das, an expert on groundwater resources at Rolta India Limited, said the company has executed a village-level database for assessment of village-wise groundwater potential using GIS.
These projects are exciting for the world, but none are more promising than in countries trying to rebuild themselves after war. Angola suffered a major civil war from 1975 to 2002. Since then, the country’s tried to regain its once proud roots. Luanda, formerly named São Paulo da Assunção de Loanda and is now the capital city of Angola, will hold an ArcGIS workshop called “EUEAngola 2012,” where governmental director Fernando Santos said the motto is “a map to every story.” Angola’s largest city will discuss maps for the census, elections, drone and image classification, while discussing the evolution of mapping technology. This is no doubt a step in the right direction.
Meanwhile, the GIS Department at the Dubai Municipality recently met to improve geospatial standards with the police and several government agencies. According to ameinfo.com, this meeting comes as the next step of evolution to provide GIS for the Emirate of Dubai and to enable everyone to benefit from it in different areas, such as the environment, health, economy, planning and public services.
This widespread adoption around the world also increases the demand for qualified GIS professionals. Whether you hold an associate, bachelor or a GIS master’s degree, an online degree in GIS technology is an investment into the future.