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2016 Intermountain GIS Conference ~ April 4-7 ~ Great Falls, MTGIS Expedition to Discovery

Keynote Speaker

Joseph J. Kerski, Ph.D., Education Manager with Esri (http://www.josephkerski.com/)

Joseph Kerski serves as Education Manager for Environmental Systems Research Institute (Esri).  He served for 21 years as Geographer at the USGS and at the US Census Bureau.  He teaches GIS at the University of Denver, other universities, in K-12 schools, and in online courses, including MOOCs. Joseph holds three degrees in Geography.  Passionate about spatial learning, Joseph fosters educational partnerships, promotes GIS in education and society through service and scholarship, and conducts courses on geotechnology in education internationally.  He creates GIS research in the effectiveness and implementation of GIS in education.

Keynote Abstract: Why GIS? Five Converging Trends

Five converging global trends – geo-awareness, geo-enablement, geotechnologies, citizen science, and storytelling– have the potential to offer GIS a world audience that may be unprecedented in the history of the discipline. Issues central to GIS professionals are now part of the global consciousness. Everyday objects are rapidly becoming locatable, and thus able to be monitored and mapped.  Tools and data that were formerly used and examined only by GIS professionals and earth and environmental scientists are now in the hands of the general public.  Citizens are becoming involved in contributing data to the scientific community.  Multimedia and cloud-based GIS have greatly multiplied the attraction that maps have had for centuries to tell stories. But despite these trends bringing opportunity to the GIS profession, is geoliteracy becoming increasingly valued? How can GIS practitioners seize the opportunity that these trends seem to present to actively promote geospatial content knowledge, skills, and perspectives throughout education and society?

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