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Attendees of the Grow Your Network, Grow Your Career Session started with active networking activities to begin the sessionRealizing a sustainable future that supports our economy, environment, and infrastructure requires a capable, pioneering workforce to see it through. As a GIS professional, you have the power to make an impact in your industry and be an influential resource to your organization.


But you don’t have to do it alone.


Students and professionals that attended FedGIS Conference 2020 joined discussions hosted by Esri Young Professionals Network and GeoNet about networking and career development to talk about community building. Building a network and professional community can significantly support your skills and growth in your career path. Take it from GeoNet MVP Ken Buja, who found the support he needed to advance his career right here in The Esri Community.


Pictured: Attendees of the Grow Your Network, Grow Your Career Session started with active networking activities to begin the session.


Ken Buja started as a cartographer at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) building maps and performing analysis for marine biologists and oceanographers. As geospatial technology and tools advanced, along with the organization’s ability to adapt to the technology without the expertise of a cartographer, Ken had to find ways to reinvent his career.


“As the software got easier for marine biologists and oceanographers to use, that kind of left me out of a job,” said Ken. “They could do their own analysis and produce their own maps,” said Ken.


“I gradually transferred over to doing application development, making websites and tools that they can use to analyze their data.”


Ken Buja chats with attendees of the Grow Your Network, Grow Your Career Session at FedGIS ConferenceEsri Training instructor-led courses helped him with learning new systems, products, and programming languages to support his career transition and projects. He supplemented information gaps by going through available product documentation and product demos to find answers he needed, but it wasn’t always sufficient.  


“Sometimes searching for answers just didn’t work out,” said Ken. “I would turn to a discussion source like GeoNet to start asking more of my intricate questions.”


As a GeoNet member, you are encouraged to work out loud. By doing so, you help others who are also facing the challenges you have and can help others be efficient and effective in their work. It all starts with asking the right questions. 


Pictured: Ken Buja (center) chats with attendees of the Grow Your Network, Grow Your Career Session at FedGIS Conference.


“When searching for answers didn’t work out, I would start asking questions and explain clearly what I was trying to do, what steps I took, and shared code that I’ve used to learn everyone else’s experiences,” said Ken.


Ken gave an example of how his website for Spatial Prioritization went from a single-use project to becoming a prevalent ArcGIS Web AppBuilder framework that is now used by federal and state agencies across the United States. Spatial prioritization is a process where a group of diverse stakeholders can collectively identify and prioritize areas of interest to map to fill in spatial analysis gaps.  


Ken Buja speaking at Grow Your Network, Grow Your Career session audienceUsing the Web AppBuilder Developer Edition, Ken customized an application and designed widgets to replicate his website into a GIS solution. Connecting and collaborating with people in the community who have in-depth knowledge about customization helped him successfully build the tool.


“GeoNet has been indispensable for me to do my job,” said Ken. As a result of the amount of help and support he received, he makes it a point to do the same and participate in opportunities to provide feedback to people’s projects and review code for those who were asking for help. By doing so, he built a professional community in GeoNet that supports his work as a GIS Developer.


“Since I am the only developer who is in my group, I view GeoNet as my team of developers who can help me talk about code, bounce ideas off each other, and get a new way of thinking about things,” said Ken. 


Building A Community

Keynote Speaker Eva Reid speaks to an audience of about 500 attendees at the YPN Luncheon.The Esri Young Professionals Network hosted a luncheon with Eva Reid, a community builder, and Senior Analyst and Trainer at the Office of the Chief Technology Officer, Government of the District of Columbia. Eva shared her career story and highlighted a GIS project she led with DC Volunteer Snow Team. DC Volunteer Snow Team used GIS to effectively match volunteers with snow shoveling needs in the communities based on the volunteer’s residential proximity to the request location. GIS optimized the use of volunteers and their deployment in their neighborhoods and connected people through the act of community service. She tied in the value of community connections to encourage attendees to work on community building throughout their careers.


Pictured: Keynote Speaker Eva Reid speaks to an audience of 500 at the YPN Luncheon.


“We all have three types of communities: personal communities, professional communities, and passion communities,” said Eva. She offered insights on how engaging and actively building the network within your three communities can influence your access to opportunities and expand your perspective.


Following Eva’s talk, another leader in the GIS industry joined the conversation with Eva to offer advice to the room of young professionals. He comes with more than 50 years of an impressive background in GIS and intrinsic knowledge of the industry.


It was Jack Dangermond.


Jack and Eva answered questions from the audience with moderator Wilson Parnell. The audience asked for more details about how to apply the advice of community building and sought guidance on common issues with evangelizing GIS in the workplace.


Audience member participating in the Q&AOne audience member asked,” As a new professional, how do you go about explaining to your upper management the importance of applying GIS to your project or profession?”


Jack said,” Be opportunistic. Find those opportunities where you can say, ‘GIS can help.’ Be interested in solving the problem.”


Eva added, “A lot of the time, we’re talking to people who are subject matter experts about the topic, not the technology. So as a person who is trying to explain why GIS is a good approach, put the technical stuff to the side and talk to them about what the end results might be.”


Jack Dangermond and Eva Reid chatted after the YPN Luncheon Q&A Session.As the conversation neared the end, an attendee questioned how to have authentic relationships in professional communities. Jack and Eva suggested to start with a conversation and setting an intention to be a friend to someone.


Having a conversation with someone will help you determine if you want to build a relationship with a person. “That’s pervasive not only in your personal relationships, but it goes right into your business relationships,” said Jack.


“Although our personal, professional, and passion communities are separate, they really do flow into each other. It doesn’t just stop at the border,” said Eva.


Pictured: Jack Dangermond and Eva Reid start a conversation after the YPN Luncheon Q&A Session.


These sessions offered some practical tips for building your community and your career in GIS. Here are two ways to start building your own community and how you can start right now:


  • Start with a problem, whether it’s yours or someone else’s.

Ken was able to connect in the community by sharing his GIS problems, and Jack suggested to an attendee to be interested in solving other’s problems with GIS. So, what’s your problem? Whose problem can you solve? Use your problems as opportunities to learn with other colleagues and work out loud to invite them into your process.

  • Start with the intention to connect authentically with people.

Eva described how your personal, professional, and passion communities are all opportunities to build your experience and network. The soft skills and learning experience you develop in one community, are easily applicable in your other communities. Have a conversation based on something that authentically resonates with your personal experience, professional goals, or things you are passionate about, like community service or recreational activities.

  • Start here.

Do you need help thinking through an idea, project, or code or want to get multiple perspectives on a topic? Ask The Esri Community. Join GeoNet to find a product, industry, or developer community to connect with fellow GIS users. Start conversations in Esri Young Professionals Network, Women's Geospatial Forum, or introduce yourself in the GeoNet Member Introductions space. You can also hop right in to answer a question, share your expertise in a blog, or join a discussion.

After Jack’s plenary opening on Tuesday, FedGIS Conference attendees watched product demonstrations for the latest enhancements in ArcGIS and heard stories from public agencies who were using ArcGIS in their efforts to realize a sustainable future.



Day 1 – February 11, 2020


U.S. Department of Agriculture – Agricultural Research Service (USDA-ARS)

The USDA-ARS opened the second half of the plenary with a video explaining how their organization is facing the challenge to feed 10 billion people by 2050. USDA-ARS created AgCROS, an ArcGIS Hub project, that enables researchers and individual farmers to unify siloed agricultural data across the country with technology from Esri and Microsoft. Learn how they use a standardized principle and mapping tools to create actionable insights to help them meet the challenge.

View USDA’s Story


Internet of Things Analytics Demo at Federal GIS Conference 2020ArcGIS Analytics for IoT

Suzanne Foss demonstrated how to use ArcGIS Analytics for IoT for cloud-based, real-time analysis and automated reporting with an example of transit information in Charlotte, North Carolina. Using data from Waze, anonymous vehicle data, social media, and other sources, analysts can access multiple layers of active transportation dynamics. 

See demo

ArcGIS Pro

Ankhita Bakshi demonstrated six of several enhancements and new spatial analysis features made to ArcGIS Pro using weather data. The demonstrated enhancements included the find and replace feature in the table, a geoprocessing tool to count overlapping features, the integration of ArcGIS Notebooks, and a way to create chart symbology within the map. New spatial analysis features in ArcGIS Pro allow you to schedule analysis for real-time data, compare two maps, and more features that are beneficial for policy-making and multidimensional analysis on raster and imagery data.

See demo


U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA)

US Environmental Protection Agency at Federal GIS Conference 2020The Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) AirNow GIS hub empowers individuals to make informed decisions about their exposure to pollutants. In a new version of AirNow to be released in the future, users will be able to access the database to see air quality trends over time. To expand their awareness efforts, the EPA developed a community engagement program, where schools could raise colored flags that represent their local air quality levels from the AirNow database. Take a look at the future of AirNow and learn how the agency used Empirical Bayesian Kriging regression prediction in ArcGIS Pro.

View EPA’s Story


ArcGIS Online

ArcGIS Online Map Selection of CoordinatesKatherine Smyth demonstrated new ArcGIS Online and ArcGIS Online Map Viewer Beta capabilities, including visualization techniques, accessibility optimization, and ways for administrators to communicate messages within the platform. Using a wind power data sample, Kathryn showed how to edit popups within the platform and explore multiple datasets.


See demo and follow the ArcGIS Online Map Viewer Beta space to learn about ongoing developments.

Pictured: Add location conversions to your map in the new ArcGIS Map Viewer Beta. 


U.S. Census Bureau

US Census FedGIS 2020The United States Census Bureau is the leading statistical agency in the world. Their effort for “counting people once, only once, and in the right place” across the United States starts this year. Using web maps, they share their strategy for counting a billion people in the country by highlighting areas that require different approaches in rural areas, bilingual households, and non-responsive households. See how Census staff mapped the ways they plan to engage people.

View Census Bureau’s Story


ArcGIS Experience Builder

Kenyon Huber-Wilker showed attendees the ease of unifying web maps, Operations Dashboard for ArcGIS, Survey123 for ArcGIS, and ArcGIS StoryMaps in the recently released ArcGIS Experience Builder in ArcGIS Online. With a few drag and drop movements, Kenyon built a mobile responsive concept application that enabled employees to check-in their travel statuses, receive travel advisories, and provided managers an aggregate count and location of staff deployed around the world.

See demo


ArcGIS Earth

ArcGIS Earth DemoFor 2D and 3D data analysis, ArcGIS Earth supports KML editing and exploratory analysis tools to draw, measure, and perform analysis. Users can also add annotations and contextual data. Watch Armando Drain demonstrate the new enhancements in this brief clip.

See demo






ArcGIS & Artificial Intelligence

Department of Defense at the Federal GIS ConferenceThe Department of Defense’s (DoD) Joint Artificial Intelligence Center (JAIC) is using ArcGIS for smart disaster response through the Humanitarian Aid and Disaster Response Program (HADR). For example, when roads have debris obstruction or damage as a result of a natural disaster occurring, the DoD can use ArcGIS Pro’s AI modeling and imagery to detect debris and create new routes for first responder vehicles to access impacted areas. See how the JAIC uses ArcGIS Enterprise, ArcGIS Notebooks Beta - Online, and ArcGIS Pro

See demo



ArcGIS Mission

For Public Safety and tactical situational awareness in the field, ArcGIS Mission simulated a fictional mission at the convention center where the FedGIS Conference was held. Esri employees, including In a GIF blog writer Mike Schoelen, formed a team to find a person of interest around the event center. With ArcGIS Mission, the team leader organized information updates, tracked what ground was covered so far, and sent geomessages to the team to focus on specific areas around the convention center.

See demo


ArcGIS in the Cloud and on the Edge

ArcGIS Excalibur demo at Federal GIS Conference 2020Madeline Schueren showed a few examples of how deep learning and Microsoft Azure Stack Edge technology can benefit field operations using ArcGIS. In her first example, she shows how Site Scan for ArcGIS supports drone flight plans and image processing from end-to-end in the cloud. Next, Madeline was able to document observations of airplanes in an airport and determine a plane model from afar using a measurement feature with ArcGIS Enterprise and ArcGIS Excalibur. Lastly, see Madeline use an image capture that enabled Survey123 for ArcGIS to preselect observation options and, in a separate example, determine how many people were at the beach with machine learning (pictured below).  

See demo


Survey123 Deep Learning Demo

Picture: Photo captures with Survey123 for ArcGIS and deep learning can count people in an area and generate a heat map.


The Y (YMCA)

The conclusion of Day 1 ended with the strategic use of GIS in communities by The Y (YMCA), a national non-profit organization for community recreation and youth development. ArcGIS enriches their outreach by using data on local trends and changing demographics in their service areas for communication and program development. Learn how the YMCA enhanced their efforts to connect to the neighborhoods they serve.

See demo


Day 2 – February 12, 2020 - Keynote Sessions


NatureServe at Federal GIS Conference 2020NatureServe

On Day 2, NatureServe announced the release of the Map of Biodiversity Importance (MoBI), the first high-resolution map of where more than 2,200 imperiled species are located in the United States. With NatureServe’s mapping efforts, industry professionals can learn about the environment and species that are native to areas in which they plan to engage. Reagan Smyth, Director of Spatial Analytics, walked through the ArcGIS and Microsoft cloud solutions that generate the maps and the science behind data.

View NatureServe’s Story and see the map in ArcGIS Living Atlas of the World



Admiral Sharp and Jack Dangermond at Federal GIS Conference 2020

National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA)

Jack returned to the stage at the end of Day 2’s main stage activities to have a conversation with Vice Admiral Robert D. Sharp, Director of the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency.  In the conversation, Admiral Sharp talks about how he started with the agency, how he used geospatial technology in his work as an intelligence officer, the need for talent in the agency, and insights on how he transitioned into leadership by championing a strategy of "People, Partnerships, Mission Today and Mission Tomorrow." Learn more about his methods for GIS leadership and how the NGA is moving towards their competitive advantage as an agency.

Watch Jack and Admiral Sharp’s Conversation

Professionals in public service attended the 23rd annual Federal GIS Conference in Washington D.C. this week, all unified by the range of possibilities of how GIS can be of service to them to create a sustainable future. 


Jack welcomes attendees to the 2020 Federal GIS ConferenceIn the opening of the Plenary, Jack welcomed 5,000 federal, state, local, and non-governmental professionals by establishing a purpose for the conference, saying the conference “is about building a community of users who share a common interest, data, and direction.


The tradition of meeting someone in the plenary set attendees on the path to realizing the purpose of FedGIS (pictured)


Attendees networking in the conference




Your Work 

Following the welcoming, he showcased select map submissions from across the nation in more than ten areas, including Transportation, Health, Agriculture, Building and Facility Management, Public Safety, and Disaster Response and Preparation. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), Bureau of Land Management (BLM), and Polk County were named amongst the featured map makers. 


Maps from Agriculture, Forestry, and Land Management featured in the Plenary

USDA Forestry receives Making A Difference Award


James Hubbard, USDA Under Secretary for National Resources and Environment (right) and Vicki Christiansen, Chief of USDA Forestry Service (center) received The Making A Difference Award from Jack Dangermond (left) for USDA Forestry Service’s innovative use of GIS in conservation, forest management, wildfire prevention and response, and citizen engagement.





Creating A Sustainable Future

Next, Jack introduces his vision of GIS as an Intelligent Infrastructure. The world is an interconnected, resilient ecosystem that is continuously responding to the challenges that our human footprint creates. Much like the human nervous system processes signals and information around our body, the science of geography embodies the nervous system of our planet. 


With GIS, each project built within an organization is sensing, understanding, and responding to signals and data in our environments. Through ongoing collaboration and collective data sharing, we’re actively building an intelligent infrastructure to create a sustainable future.


Learn more about how this intelligent infrastructure broadens access to the technology and how it extends GIS to the edge. 



Our Work

Esri’s product strategy has two goals: advancing the technology of GIS and supporting users of that technology. Jack reviews some of the upcoming advancements with ArcGIS, including making ArcGIS increasingly cloud-native which brings more services to analyze the Internet of Things (IoT) and building a new version of ArcGIS Enterprise on Kubernetes for release in the Winter.


After an overview of ArcGIS and its evolution to meet current trends, he reviews a list of more than 30 solutions and products in ArcGIS with increased capabilities and some insight on what’s next in the 2020 RoadMap.


Overview of Product Strategy 0:39



Serving Our Users

Services are how Esri delivers on the goal of supporting our users.  With professional development resources through Esri Training, conferences, books, and a network of partners and special relationships to support technology diversity and adoption, Jack encourages attendees to “go all in” on realizing the future of GIS as an intelligent infrastructure through continued learning and innovative thinking.


GIS Professional work is a part of something much larger“You’re, in many ways, a part of something much larger,” said Jack in his closing remarks. “To realize this sustainable future… it's more than technology; it requires you. It requires intelligent action and thinking…your value, ethics, a lot of hard work, and going all in.”





Stay tuned for more highlights from FedGIS Conference 2020! 

Special service provided for the partial government shutdown


We are excited to be just days away from the start of the Esri Federal GIS Conference. We’ve recently announced our keynote speakers and plenary agenda, and are ready to welcome our Federal Government user community to this year’s event.


The conference is a great opportunity for our Federal users across defense, intel and civilian agencies to network with peers and gain new skills and training using GIS technology.

We know that a few of our users may not be able to attend in their official capacity because it is not an excepted activity during this time. We recognize these challenges and want to help.


  • If you, or your furloughed colleagues, cannot attend in an official capacity, we would be happy to transfer any Federal GIS Conference registration from an organization to that of a private citizen.


  • If you would like, Esri will transfer your current registration, at no cost, from your organization to you, as a private citizen. This will be done onsite at the conference at the Badge Assistance – Organization Change queue, so you can enjoy the event as a private citizen.


We encourage all of our Federal Government users to also share this with their colleagues. We hope all of our users are able to attend the event, and take advantage of the training, workshops and networking opportunities the conference provides.

We are excited to announce our keynote speaker, Neda Kasraee, of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration's (NASA) Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL), DEVELOP Program, for this year's Young Professionals Network (YPN) Luncheon. DEVELOP, part of NASA's Applied Sciences Program, addresses environmental and public policy issues through interdisciplinary research projects that apply the lens of NASA Earth observations to community concerns around the globe.



Kasraee will be speaking on the environmental impact of the Burning Man festival. Learn how her team used satellite imagery and Esri software to determine environmental impact, damage, and future concerns of large festivals. Every year, a temporary city appears on the Black Rock Desert playa in northwestern Nevada. Burning Man inspires thousands of people to travel to Black Rock Desert playa annually, but this festival raises questions on sustainability. The local community has noticed growth and encroachment of wind-deposited sediment mounds that are potentially caused by erosion.


Join us on Tuesday, January 29, 12:30 p.m.–1:30 p.m., in Ballroom C (level 3) at the Walter E. Washington Convention Center, to hear the outcome of this environmental research.


Don't forget to attend the other two YPN activities at the Esri Federal GIS (FedGIS) Conference:


YPN Happy Hour at Lucky Strike Bowling

Tuesday, January 29

6:30 p.m.–8:30 p.m.

701 7th Street NW #2,

Washington, DC 20001

Food and beverages will be served.


YPN Session: "Navigating Your Purpose"

Wednesday, January 30

1:30 p.m.–2:30 p.m.

            Room 208 AB


For more information please contact:


Raquel Perez:

Caroline Garris:

The People

The Esri Federal GIS Conference is the only event in North America catering specifically to federal employees interested in learning about the spatial significance of their data. Join more than 4,500 federal professionals to learn how all levels of government use The Science of Where to solve the world's greatest challenges. Whether you are using mapping to determine the impact of natural disasters and epidemics, decide where to organize conservation efforts, or predict national security threats, you will find a core group of industry leaders doing something incredible at the Esri Federal GIS Conference.


New Tech Trends

Give yourself a chance to experience what happens when you bring 4,500 federal professionals together to talk best practices and possibilities and discuss how the major agencies see the future of data analysis. You don't need a deep technical background to see how data visualization is changing the world. The workshops, booth demos, partners, and agency collaboration provide insight into the future of data integration and federal decision-making.


Enhancement of Your Education

Participate in any of more than 125 workshops, sessions, and Hands-On Learning Lab exercises to get maximum training in just two days. Each hour-long workshop will focus on a specific topic—such as defense, facilities, or public safety—while other attractions are more tech oriented, including workshops on Web GIS, spatial analysis, Python, and real-time geographic information system (GIS) technology. We offer a station where you can customize your own certificate of attendance based on the workshops you participate in during the conference.


Apps for Everyone

Governments need especially effective ways to communicate with specific audiences. Whether you need to reach the general public or particular stakeholders, powerful ArcGIS apps let you do this and more. Learn about the more than 30 different configurable app templates and the powerful storytelling capabilities in Esri Story Maps. Create map-based apps that can be used inside your organization, embedded on websites, or shared with the world. With these apps, you can

  • Engage your community.
  • Showcase plans, projects, and infrastructure.
  • Crowdsource community observations, input, and data.
  • Educate decision-makers.


The Science of Where

We believe that digital transformation is leading government and society into a new technological frontier. As the global market leader in GIS, Esri provides the world's most powerful mapping and spatial analytics software to help organizations everywhere solve problems in real time. We help companies and organizations see data in new ways, improve operational and business results, and unlock their data's full potential. Our customers and users—in manufacturing, retail, utilities, telecommunications, government, defense, and dozens of other industries—use our ArcGIS platform for location intelligence to visualize, interpret, analyze, understand, and exploit all types of data. We call this The Science of Where.



Have you registered yet? If not, click here! The conference is in January this year so you don't want to miss out.

First day of Spring in D.C.After an inspirational Plenary on Day One and Keynote Plenary on Day Two of the 2018 Federal GIS Conference in Washington D.C., attendees dispersed to begin their adventures on the Expo floor and in the many workshops provided by Esri staff and user and partners. The GeoNet team had the pleasure of participating in this year's event, giving the Highlights from the 2018 FedGIS Plenary, and meeting so many of the wonderful guests that braved the cold, snowy weather to learn what advancements Esri has in store for the future of GIS. 


Enjoy the Highlights of what we captured. 


YPN Luncheon

by Chris Catania


YPN Keynote Luncheon at FedGIS Conference 2018

During the Young Professionals Network (Esri Young Professionals Network) luncheon on Tuesday, National Geographic’s Vice President of Media Innovation, Kaitlin Yarnell, shared a compelling commentary on the importance of crafting a visual story and the impact it can have on your career and ability to influence within your organization. Yarnell also took us through the story of how her role as a cartographer at Nat Geo evolved into her becoming a well-known and highly respected thought leader in geography worldwide. Here’s the highlights from her talk and Q&A session with YPN organizer Corianne Jones. We invite you to ask your questions and share your comments below.  


When you have a complex story to tell it’s important to break it down in to smaller parts and figure out how to use visuals to make the story more compelling and memorable,” said Yarnell. “Thinking visually helps to see what parts of the story are most important and how to best tell them.”


As an example, Yarnell shared the Mindsuckers story explaining how National Geographic needed to evolve to reach a new audience with a complex story. To rise to the challenge, Yarnell explained that they couldn’t rely on just one channel but they need to take risks and pursue an approach that included a collection of integrated formats; a creative dub-stub inspired video, compelling photography, a graphic novel element and interactive web content. In the end, the approach worked. Yarnell’s team successfully pushed beyond previously traditional boundaries connecting Nat Geo with their new and younger target audience while also telling an important, complex and compelling scientific story.  


To wrap up the session, Jones sat down with Yarnell to chat about what she has learned from building her team and developing her career.


What are the top three things you suggest doing when growing your career?  

  • Know your strengths. Experiment with many things early on in your career, but once you find what you’re good at, focus on it and use those unique talents to stand out from others.
  • Have a personal 30 second elevator speech. Always be ready to quickly share your personal mission, your work, or what your most passionate about and why. This is an important tool to have ready, especially when talking with leaders and executives.
  • Sketch out what you’re doing before starting projects. Instead of diving right into digital tools, use simple tools to start brainstorming, like paper and sharpie, and map out your ideas. This “analog” first step helps to refine what you’re trying to accomplish with projects.


What do you look for when hiring candidates?

I look for passion. If someone is passionate about a hobby or other areas besides design, like running marathons or publishing their own blog, I usually ask them more about those type of things. I love learning more about those “side interests” in candidates because it helps me gauge their passion and it demonstrates their level of dedication and determination. And together those elements show me that they truly care about they what they’re doing in life and work, and that type of passion usually means that they have the capacity to deliver great contributions on my team.


Wednesday Keynote PlenaryJack Dangermond and Sue Gordon

Jack and Sue Gordon, Principal Deputy Director of National Intelligence (PDDNI), get real with an intimate, sit-down discussion on stage. As they reminiscence on their acquaintance, Gordon refers to Jack as an inspiration, “He has a vision about what could be and then turns it into action that benefits America's interests.”


In response, Jack compliments Gordon for leading the NGA digital transformation and being the powerhouse behind the IC GIS Portal; a platform for analytics, collaboration, and data sharing that is used throughout the intelligence community—right down to the war fighter. Starting from zero, the IC GIS Portal now has 120,000 users worldwide.


Gordon shares her love for geography, “I really love geography and GIS because I think it’s accessible STEM. You are doing all those fundamental things in a way that allows you to see what you’re playing with.”


They talk candidly about the use of maps and GIS in the White House. Gordon explains how they put a map or some sort of spatial tabulation for almost every intelligence briefing.


Gordon shares the complexity and challenges of the world of GIS. She elaborates, “We don’t show human activity well enough,” referring to mass migration, human crisis in a map view, impacts to regions such as cultural changes.


"The combination of a map plus geospatial information presented differently is really powerful...Would love to show the President better - the feeling - taking story maps to another level." ~Susan Gordon, Principal Deputy Director of National Intelligence



Switching the topic, Jack compliments Gordon in her role as the PDDNI, “You create a place of nurturing. You reach out and show the way – Amazing.” He asks if she has any advice for others.

Her advice:

  1. Have to be good at your job. 
  2. Be big.
  3. Be bold - No organization has enough energy to stop someone who does. 
  4. Learn to make decisions.
  5. Give people responsibility. They work for you. 
  6. Be kind - treat people decently. 

She adds, “Tell your kids to get a STEM education… If you are a leader you need to be a technical leader.” 

They transition into a conversation about self-driving cars. Gordon recollects a previous discussion with a friend who commented that children will not know how to drive a car. This led her to begin thinking about how we learn geography, “Most of us learn geography when we start driving cars…Geography is a foundational skill we need - how will people get that experience without driving?”  

Jack discusses an initiative K-12 program to help integrate geography and GIS into early education.

Continuing Gordon asks, “What is science fiction in this field now?”

Jack replies, “AR/VR machine learning - starting to be realized now - was science fiction 5-years ago.”


Their conversation ended in a warm farewell as Gordon exited the stage and Jack gave a welcoming introduction of the American Red Cross presenters.American Red Cross Partners


ARC Presentation

  • Brad Kieserman, Vice President – Disaster Operations & Logistics
  • Brian Keenum, Senior Director – Business Infrastructure
  • Omari Sefu, Senior Associate – GIS and Disaster Data Analysis


In partnership with Esri, the American Red Cross has developed their RC View system to synthesize federal, state and local data sources to inform service delivery and streamline reporting on large national disaster relief operations. Mapping of home fires, preparedness efforts for our local communities, and disaster relief efforts continue to evolve. With RC View its data-driven decision-making capability increases readiness and better meets our mission: alleviate human suffering in the face of emergencies.


Brian Keenum, “We’re confident through data we can do a better job for the future.”


Brad Kieserman gives demonstration while Omari Sefu navigates the maps used for disaster recovery by the American Red Cross. Samples included fire damaged homes, use of mobile (Survey123 for ArcGIS) for volunteers, staff tracking in the field.


“Everything we do…is enabling our volunteer workforce to accomplish that mission.” ~ Brad Kieserman


Data, technology, GIS and data visualization are helping make a better Red Cross. RC View is a live map. We gather virtually and in our headquarters every day, and we look at the map. We respond to more than 360,000 disasters per year. We’re learning how we can provide more service to more people with compassion and quality -- providing shelter, feeding and comfort – because we can see the data.


We’re using your data and products. It ranges from weather, information about social vulnerability from the CDC, to flood maps from FEMA, and local authoritative information. The American Red Cross isn’t “the” team, we’re part of that team. You have helped alleviate suffering because we are using your data.


Nearly 50 percent of Americans can’t withstand an event that costs them $400. We organize so that these people don’t go over the tipping point and remain standing on their two feet.


On the Expo Floor

SafeGraphSafeGraph Ryan Squire

After the Keynote Plenary, we headed to the Startup Zone on the Expo floor to talk with members of theEsri Startup Program.  First, we talked with Ryan Squire of SafeGraph who is new to the FedGIS conference. SafeGraph is a Machine Learning tech company that works with Esri customers to collect human movement, the where and when of human activity, tracked via devices such as mobile phones.


This datasets collected by SafeGraph are used by Esri customers who use ArcGIS and need big data collections to understand markets, strategy planning, advertising, and so much more. They came to FedGIS to gather feedback from the Federal customers and learn how they can better provide data collection to help with city planning and government intelligence.


Easy2Hike FoundersEasy2Hike

We also had the pleasure to meet up with Easy2Hike at the Start Up zone. Easy2Hike is a new company working with Parks and Recreation services to build easy to use hiking trail maps for mobile devices. Easy2Hike partners, Uri Bar and Erez Talgam are avid hikers inspired by their own experiences on hiking trails all over the world. They wanted to develop a mobile app that anyone can use and is easy to update by park administrators without having to know code or GIS.


The Easy2Hike app provides geographic history and story-telling of the parks and trail locations, the ability to push alerts and communications to park goers, and even provides analytics such as the best places to have picnic tables or attractions. Uri and Erez are at FedGIS to get feedback and make connections with other Esri users and partners in an effort to expand their capabilities with their app.


Day One Workshop Session

GIS for Elected Officials

Day One we explored the Expo floor and sat in a workshop hosted by Bonnie Stayer and Lauren Lipovic. The session guest presenters representing different Senate offices demonstrated how government organizations are using GIS to leverage data for communications and understanding of constituents and making policies.


  • Annie Hoefler, U.S. Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources
    • Hoefler shared several projects tasked to the U.S. Senate Committee on Energy and Natural Resources to find more resourceful mapping sets for natural resources, disaster recovery, cybersecurity, and several other projects.
  • Chance Costello, U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation
    • Castello displayed slides of the Nationwide Local Ballot Measures by County for 2014-2017.
  • Romel Nicholas, Office of U.S. Senator Orin Hatch
    • In only 10-minutes, Nicholas developed a map of dissatisfied constituent correspondence from the State of Utah explaining how the information is then used to help guide communications for U.S. Senator Orin Hatch.


Day Two Workshops

ArcGIS for Local Government Solutions: An Overview

We wrapped up the Day Two afternoon with a workshop presented by Rachel Weedon on “ArcGIS for Local Government Solutions: An Overview.” The workshop introduced attendees to ArcGIS solutions, giving an overview of popular solution areas, demonstrating best practices for deployment and a sneak peek at future development initiatives. The workshop also highlighted case studies and examples from cities and counties that currently have ArcGIS for Local Government solutions deployed. Rachel also provided an overview of how MNCPPC has been using the ArcGIS Solution apps.


Evolving the GIS Professional: Modernizing Intelligence Production in ArcGIS

We followed with the final session of the evening presented by Renee Bernstein and Wendy Creighton on the “Evolving the GIS Professional: Modernizing Intelligence Production in ArcGIS.” The workshop showcased how a GIS professional can incorporate Esri's ArcGIS platform into intelligence production, analysis, and sharing for more informed decision-making at all levels.  


Member Connections at the GeoNet area

It was great to meet many current government members of the Esri Community who stopped by the GeoNet booth. We enjoyed the conversations and hearing how you're using the community in your work. We also welcome all new members who signed up this week and invite you to check out the GeoNet Resource Hub for tips, tools and news. 


Finally, we attended the Esri final night social. It was a beautiful setting at the Smithsonian National Portrait Museum. Many connected, collaborated and even swapped business cards to continue their discussions outside of the conference.

 Esri Social at National Portrait Museum




Welcome to FedGIS 2018

Welcome and thank you for following the 2018 Federal GIS Plenary!


Please enjoy the highlights from today's plenary session. Feel free to join the conversation and comment bleow.


Be sure to check back today and Wednesday for FedGIS Conference 2018 daily recaps of all the exciting activities. 


Watch the Plenary Videos on YouTube.

**Click on images to open in a new browser and see images in full scale.


Thank you for your service
Michelle Mathias and Candace Loya ready
to share the plenary

The Army’s 132nd: asking them what they’re excited about learning more about this week. “We’re looking forward to understanding how to use and implement Portal so we can better collaborate and share information among the 132nd. And we really want to see what opportunities there are with ArcGIS Pro. Should be a great next couple of days!”



Welcome to FedGIS Conference 2018! 

GIS – Connecting and Helping Everyone


Jack's IntroJack welcomes and thanks the audience for attending the 2018 Federal GIS Conference and shares the focus for this year’s conference including insights on the work that will be shared, the valuable sessions and what’s new in the world of GIS He is excited about the work done to advance products such as ArcGIS Pro, Web APIs, new server technologies, 3D analytics and mobile technology integration for more efficiency in the Science of Where.


Meet & Greet

Keeping with the Esri Conference traditions and Jack’s inspirational message of collaboration, he asks the audience to stand up and greet one another. Conversation fills the room as the attendees shake hands, exchanging names and business cards.

 Meet and Greet

Hamilton and John make a quick connection during the meet and greet.


Your Work

Jack shares samples of work inspired, developed and designed by Esri customers all over the world. He shares examples of Field Mobility, maps from the Census Bureau and the National Weather Service.


Provided by staff writer: Matt Ball


You are working in so many areas – agriculture, energy, natural resources, environment, public safety, defense, transportation, etc. You apply GIS, remote sensing and real-time technologies, and you create and use data of many kinds. The beauty of geospatial technology is its ability to integrate information across domains and across organizations. The culture of governments has shifted driven by policy and technology innovation, especially with open data initiatives that make it easier to share information. You are navigating around barriers and engaging citizens at whole new levels.


Jack announces winners of the Making a Difference Award. Congratulations to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, National Weather Service, National Centers for Environmental Prediction, and the Office of Dissemination for their work together in GIS.

Accepting the award: Kari Sheets, Ben Kyger, and Tony LaVoi


Accepting the Making a Difference Award



 Jack elaborates on the Science of Where, simply stating that it is the science of geography, of GIS technology, and the science of applying GIS.

Our biggest objective..."Creating a more sustainable future." ~ Jack Dangermond

Esri Vision - Creating a More Sustainable Future

Esri Framework


Jack shares the vision and framework to creating a more sustainable future.


Our Work

Jack explains how the field of GIS is expanding, advancing and always changing to build better services and systems. He discusses the ArcGIS comprehensive geospatial platform from the desktop to the Enterprise.

Matt Ball

A big change has been happening under our feet, using services to integrate data dynamically as digital dial tones. We can read data in from many sources and can share data through the cloud to collaborate in new ways. The concept of spatial infrastructure has been around for years. There is a revolution now with how easy it is to share information through services. We can bring data together, mash it up, and create new understanding. It’s available to everyone in an organization through simple maps on any device. At the high-end, it engages data scientists who apply analytics to drive policy planning and decision making. Distributed systems weave together information across individuals, teams, departments and organizations as well as between local, regional, national and global governments. 

ArcGIS model


Protecting Plants and Animals to Feed Our Country and the World

USDA APHIS (Animal and Plant Health Inspection Services)

Speakers: Shannon Reid Hamm, Mary Jane McCool-Eye, Lisa Kennaway and Bryson Webber

APHIS PresentersHamm introduces APHIS's mission to protect American agriculture and natural resources. Using Web GIS for a variety of APHIS programs, they seek to find new and innovative approaches to gather scientific data. With tools like Web GIS, APHIS can transform this data into usable information, share it with the public and continue to protect the health and value of American agriculture and natural resources. 


Hamm introduces Mary Jane McCool-Eye. McCool-Eye shares a recent project on screwworms. Screwworms pose a growing concern for APHIS as infestation can result in costly losses for our country’s livestock. She explains how ArcGIS tools and ArcGIS Survey123 are used to help prevent infestation of the Screwworm.

Invasive Gypsy MothBryson Webber presents the use of WebGIS to solve biological problems
Lisa Kennaway talks further about the invasive Gypsy Moth that causes over $30 million a year in damage in US Forests.Bryson Webber shares a current project to develop systems for real-time tracking of feral swine for monitoring feral swine densities using drones in Texas.


Hamm wraps it up with a demonstration of how they use Web GIS to maximize their efficiency while in the field during disasters.

APHIS use of WebGIS and ArcGIS Online during disaster recovery


* Additional resources can be found on GeoNet in the Web GIS space. 


Our Work

Jack discusses the benefits of using ArcGIS Enterprise for building better GIS experiences. Going from Desktop to Cloud allows collaboration, sharing of resources and analytics, and efficiency. It opens GIS to the world. 

ArcGIS platform from desktop to cloudArcGIS platform from desktop to clou

ArcGIS 3D, Mobility, and Apps all helping to evolve GIS with new visualization, Analytics and Apps. ArcGIS is a complete image management system.

Integration of 3D making GIS more appealing


"Maps are engaging." ~Jack Dangermond, Founder and CEO


Maps engage community


Jack introduces Machine LearningOur Work in Machine Learning

Speakers: Alberto Nieto, Kristen Hocutt

Jack introduces the next group of presenters from Esri to discuss Esri’s advancements and use of Machine Learning.


“Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning are some of the most important and fascinating concepts in today’s world.” ~ Alberto Nieto


Nieto begins by explaining the main ideas for Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning:


Deep Learning Integration- has to do with code structures that loosely resemble the human brain and how adaptive it is at solving problems. In ArcGIS we use these concepts to drive spatial analysis.


Alberto Nieto discusses concepts of Machine LearningMachine Learning Algorithms – Three concepts

  • Classification - using Support Vector Machine algorithms to create a land cover classification layer
  • Clustering - the new Density-based Clustering tool allows you to process large quantities of input point data into meaningful cluster or sparse noise
  • Prediction - using Geographically-Weighted Regression lets geography calibrate the factors that help you predict


Kristen Hocutt demonstrates how clustering in Machine Learning Algorithms were used to reflect over 700K traffic accidents that happened in Virginia, DC and Maryland in 2017.

Hocutt demonstrates traffic clustering in machine learning
Density Based Clustering: DBSCAN

  • GP Tool & algorithm DBSCAN
  • Comparison between DC & Baltimore
  • North Street in Baltimore
  • Close to Home-Conference Center

Density Based Clustering: HDBSCAN

  • Redefines what it means to be a cluster
  • Massachusetts Avenue with AOI boundary

Clustering & Classification of Parking Lots

  • HDBSCAN in Hagerstown
  • Hagerstown Parking Lot
  • Image Classification - impervious surface parking lots
  • Top 25 Worst Parking Lots

Deep Learning Integration - is code structures that loosely resemble the human brain and how adaptive it is at solving problems. In ArcGIS we use these concepts to drive spatial analysis.


Nieto gives a live demonstration of traffic intersections in Jackson Hole, WY and how using ArcGIS API for Python, the Operations Dashboard can track activity within intersections every six seconds. The example of the integration between ArcGIS and Deep Learning allows us to find new capabilities to predict and improve traffic in areas such of roads and intersections.


Live feed of traffic


Nieto displays real-time feed for traffic prediction and deep learning allows your capabilities to expand.


~Matt Ball

A highlight of the use of machine learning technology was the use of unsupervised learning and self-organizing maps to optimize oil and gas inspection routes to wells in remote areas where the road segments haven’t been mapped. We used GPS breadcrumbs from multiple vehicles and multiple days to determine the road location. The machine mutates the lines to conform with the breadcrumb points and created a complete network. A collection of breadcrumbs were then converted into navigable street segments and then analyzed with Network Analyst to determine the optimal routes.


Jack summarizes the first half of the plenary with a few words and explains the use of key elements in ArcGIS such as Real-Time & Big Data GIS Analytics. He shares the ArcGIS enterprise strategy and architecture as an open, inter-operable and standards-compliant platform and concludes with the actual components of what ArcGIS is about.


ArcGIS Product ComponentsArcGIS Online
ArcGIS EnterpriseArcGIS Portal

Esri Roadmap


"We live for you..." ~Jack Dangermond

~ Matt Ball

ArcGIS product components are desktop or ArcGIS Pro, ArcGIS Online a software as a service that can be integrated with other components as well as being used independently, and ArcGIS Enterprise that can scale massively via the cloud. With ArcGIS Portal, we enable sharing and collaboration across organizations to achieve the system of systems vision so that updated content can be sent dynamically and periodically to other organizations. We also have extensions to ArcGIS Enterprise: ImageServer, Geoanalytics Server, GeoEvent Server, ArcGIS Monitor and Utility Network Management. We have focused application products around geodesign, location intelligence and location-specific workflows. Then we have ArcGIS Solutions that are industry focused around apps and communities. Finally, we have an ArcGIS Developer Platform that allows users to build custom solutions.


Jack concludes with a slide on GIS Mapping and Advancing.

Advancing in GIS


During the Break 

Postcards for Jack

During the break the “Postcards to Jack” area buzzed with activity as attendees reflected on the first half on the plenary jotting down their feedback, ideas and thoughts. Jack also stopped by to answer questions and talk with users about what they were most interested in and curious about.


Return with opening video - Exploring The Science of Where™


ArcGIS Pro Mapping - BasemapBillie Leff describes the use of the ArcGIS Basemaps Gallery

Speakers: Bille Leff

Leff opens by sharing that she has had the opportunity to help many GIS professionals “transform GIS data into amazing and powerful maps.”


Image: Billie Leff describes the use of the ArcGIS Basemaps Gallery


“Today, I want to share with you some of the capabilities ArcGIS Pro has to offer to help you create maps that inform, engage and inspire.”

She continues how Basemap is an important context for mapping. The ArcGIS Pro Basemap Gallery provides an impressive variety of basemaps from:

  • World topographic maps for visualizing environmental phenomena
  • Popular light and dark gray canvases for a clean context
  • Firefly versions of the World Imagery for a desaturated look
  • Vector tile basemaps
  • Other layers from the ArcGIS Living Atlas of the World
  • Simple journalistic appearance like the Newspaper basemap
  • Education appearance maps with a youthful look such as the Color Pencil basemap
  • Historic maps like the Modern Antique
  • And adding new ones all the time making them ideal any purpose and audience

Leff switches to demonstrate the Topo of Mapping and Charting Solutions that are in the process of migrating cartographic production from ArcMap to ArcGIS Pro such as a MGCP Topographic Map.


She follows with a slide on TE Imagery using a background for a realistic and detailed appearance demonstrating a map of coastal California areas with terrain in places where it matters.


Pro Imagery

Speakers: Jo Fraley, Juhan Yoon

Fraley opens explaining that imagery in the perfect complement to visual language of GIS and a key component of the ArcGIS Platform. Combining Image Analysis with Geospatial Analysis, “unlocks new understanding of our world and the issues we need to address,’ states Fraley.


Fraley asks Yoon to start a visual demonstration of the mountains of Iran investigating a suspected military complex.


Drone video starts playing: Yoon’s gives a fascinating presentation of satellite imagery to drones flying over a facility in Imam Ali and even includes a close-up of roads, walls, and what appears to look like a missile.

Juhan Yoon demonstrates 3D mapping showing Missile

Image: Juhan Yoon demonstrates 3D mapping showing what appears to be a missile on a vehicle.


Fraley gives a demonstration in real-time 3D with The specified item was not found. at the Yucaipa Valley Water District, California. Using one of our Apps for the field, Drone2Map, it allows us to process the imagery collected to create 2D and 3D products. 

Jo Fraley demonstrates Drone2Map in 3D Crowd looking at maps in 3D vision


Additional options are available for the creation of different 2D and 3D products. In less than 40 minutes, we had our first 2D products, and the high accuracy of the Surface Model and the Digital Terrain Model. 


Pro Configured

Natalie Feuerstein demonstrates ICAP

Speaker: Natalie Feuerstein

Feuerstein gives a visual comparison of what users currently see when opening ArcGIS Pro versus an example of how a configuration and some add-ins can transform ArcGIS Pro into a focused workstation for intelligence analysts out in the field supporting operations, with little to no GIS experience.

Using the SDK, she demonstrates how users can go from ArcGIS Pro to a more focused experience.


“We’re calling it the Intelligence Configuration for ArcGIS Pro, or ICAP for short, and it’ll change the way intel analysts do business.”


With just a few exciting new capabilities in ICAP, offers the power and potential of using the ArcGIS Pro SDK to build custom mission applications for tactical and strategic intelligence, border security, law enforcement investigations, and many others.

ArcGIS as a platform for Science: Ocean Pollution Demo

Speaker: Brett Rose

“ArcGIS is a great platform for Science to interact, visualize and perform analysis.”

Brett Rose gives demonstration of tracking pollution in oceansUsing Web services from NOAA and DOI's Marine Cadastre Program showing aspects of marine life, Rose investigates a scientific study of how human actions, (noise pollution and plastic pollution,) off the coast of Southern California impact whale density, migration corridors, and feeding areas.


The map portrays a visual of how sound pollution can travel for many miles along the deep sound channel utilizing Ecological Marine Units (developed as a collaborative effort between Esri, USGS and many others within the Group on Earth Observation community).


Also follow Dawn Wright for more information about Spatial Analytics and Ocean Sciences.

Rose explains they downloaded the Ecological Marine Units as a Pro Package and loaded them into a 3D scene providing with a wealth of information about our oceans and detailed date for each water column.


He moves onto mapping of the impact plastics has on the oceans. “Using observations with Empirical Bayesian Kriging - Regression Prediction, we can use the current direction and speed as explanatory variables and now interpolate a continuous surface that represents the concentration of plastics across the Pacific.”  The output shows us the areas with the highest concentrations of plastics.


“Using ArcGIS as a platform for science allows us to connect data, perform analysis and share our science to everyone.”



Speakers: James Jones, Alberto Nieto

 James Jones demonstrates how Esri can use Python to track staff

James Jones demonstrates Learning to Write Python in Jupyter Notebook, sharing a notebook that allow us to analyze personal relationships for Esri employee tracking.


Alberto Nieto gives a simple and quick example of how WebGIS Automation with the ArcGIS API for Python allows you to connect with federated servers, publish content, clone content, ensuring consistency, reliability, and efficiency across your enterprise.

Alberto Nieto shows how he develops an online ArcGIS community in Python

Alberto Nieto shows how he develops an online ArcGIS community in Python


ArcGIS Online and ArcGIS Online 3D

Speakers: Kyle Talbot, Madeline Schueren

 Kyle Talbot demonstrates ArcGIS Online

Kyle Talbot provides a visual presentation of recreation data provided by the The specified item was not found. customizing the basemap with different looks until he settles on one that is a more Mid-Century artistic look suited for Forest service data. ArcGIS Online allows you to harness spatial data and to easily create beautiful maps that tell the stories within that data.


Talbot also demonstrates a map designed for the Pacific Northwest Campsites using familiar images, layers


Madeline Schueren continues the visual journey with 3D Web scenes using ArcGIS Online for maps of popular trails near Mt. Jefferson in Oregon with high-resolution terrain.

Madeline Schueren gives a demonstration of lidar point clouds

Using her iPhone, Schueren demonstrates a map scene in the city of Raleigh, North Carolina to show how simple and beautiful the 3D maps are designed, and how the use of mobile mapping allows for users to see the details of buildings, road signs, and so much more.


Additional related GeoNet spaces 3D   and a blog on Analyzing 30 days of Earthquakes using 3D Scenes in ArcGIS Online.


Fighting Fraud, Waste, and Abuse through Spatial Analytics

Speakers: Joanne Chiedi & Timothy Kropp from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services – Office of the Inspector General (HHS OIG)


The HHS OIG is at the forefront of our country's efforts to combat fraud, waste, and abuse and to improve the efficiency of Medicare, Medicaid and more than 100 other HHS programs. With such urgency to accomplish a grand mission, the HHS OIG is leveraging advanced technologies in spatial analytics to support their work in the opioid crisis. 


~ Matt Ball

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Office of Inspector General (OIG) is starting to use Insights for ArcGIS to help guide resources to make maximum positive impacts on the opioid academic. Pennsylvania has one of the highest rates of death. Insights allowed HHS OIG to look at prescriptions across the state. The analysis presents different doctor types. Drilling into the family practice specialists, we expect to see fewer prescription rates. We found one family physician with the highest rate of prescriptions over a year. We dive in to look at this outlier, and at a time series, we see oxycodone prescriptions are far higher than the average and are trending upwards. HHS OIG took at a look to see if the irrational was indeed unlawful Indeed, this physician was indicted for writing fraudulent prescriptions, for unlawful drug distribution and for causing the death of five of his patients.


GeoNet references to today’s HHS presentation:

Responding to the Opioid Crisis with GIS whitepaper 

Health and Human ServicesHealth and Human Services

ArcGIS Solutions for the Opioid Epidemic

Insights for ArcGIS - Opioid epidemic 


ArcGIS for Developers

Speakers: Euan Cameron, Kerry Robinson, Jo Fraley

Euan Cameron discusses map viewer and explains that the developer’s website covers resources such as example apps (group The specified item was not found..)


Cameron also references GeoNet for useful resources for developers.

GeoNet mention as resource for Developers


Kerry Robinson demonstrates the Mobile Map Package Runtime SDK, OCG Tiles and WMS services, support OGC SEO Package and shows the current vegetation in the DC area.

Kerry Robinson demonstrates Run-time over mobile phone

Robinson demonstrates Runtime over mobile phone. She explains that Runtime also supports a 3D experience with viewshed.

~ Matt Ball

You don’t have to be a developer to create a native application. The ArcGIS Developers website gives you the tools to build with GIS components. It shows best practices for the platform that you’re targeting. We outline what you can do with the individual components. There are also success stories that outline how a user has pulled together components to create a solution.

One Platform – Supporting Many Missions (Smart Installations)

Speakers: Jim Bauer and James Sullivan

Jim BauerJim Bauer
 James Sullivan gives visual demonstration of Autodesk BIM Design (Internal Use of a facilities) Jim Bauer – Noise Survey using Survey123

Closing Plenary

Jeff Peters closes by reminding everyone to “Connect” while here.

Esri’s Federal small business partner specialty (FSBS) community will be on full display at the upcoming Esri Federal GIS Conference in DC on March 20-21, 2018.  With over 85 partners in the FSBS, Esri has an amazing community of small business partners who provide a wide range of GIS services and solutions.  Here is what to expect at Fed GIS from Esri’s FSBS partners next week.


Fed GIS 2018 will feature an expanded Small Business Pavilion in which the following 14 companies are exhibiting: 

  • Geodynamics - P1
  • Continental Mapping Consultants – P2
  • Pro-West & Associates – P3
  • GeoCGI – P4
  • INCATech LLC – P5
  • R&K Solutions, Inc – P6
  • PTFS – P7
  • Innovate! – P8
  • PenBay Solutions – P9
  • Critigen – P10
  • NorthPoint Geographic Solutions – P11
  • New Light Technologies, Inc. – P12
  • Bad Elf – P13
  • Spatial Front, Inc. – P14

Additionally, the following FSBS partners are exhibiting in other parts of the exhibit hall:

  • ArdentMC @ the DHS Booth 535
  • Blue Raster - 816
  • GISinc - 717
  • Voyager Search - 641

Small business partners have been honing their skills and incorporating their tradecraft to create solutions built on Esri’s web based GIS platform, ArcGIS.  Using ArcGIS, these partners have adopted the latest technology and implemented their solutions at agencies across the US Federal government.  It is truly exciting to see the depth and breadth of these solutions that span every dimension of the Earth, from land, sea, air, indoors to 3D:

On the ground - providing open data and real-time data for disaster emergency response;

Land –planning for our Nation’s forests and other land use applications;

Sea – leveraging Full Motion Video for underwater exploration and analysis;

Air – using drones to conduct surveillance, damage assessments and inspections;

Indoors – using internet of things (IoT) for the management of facilities and assets

3D – modernizing zoning rule visualization for city planning


Here are just some of the highlights of what our small business exhibitors will be showcasing:


ArdentMC demonstrated their public safety and geospatial expertise when they rapidly launched a series of Homeland Infrastructure Foundation Level Data (HIFLD) Open sites in response to the devastating 2017 Hurricane season.  These sites supported open data geospatial aggregation – see the sites here: Harvey, Irma and Maria.  You can learn more about these implementations from Ardent who will be present in the DHS booth.


Blue Raster will be showing their applications for smart city development and planning:

  • The new Economic Development Configurable Application, based on Esri’s newly released ArcGIS Hub, examines all aspects of what makes a city attractive to either a new or re-locating business. These configurable applications take the guess-work out of application development, and allow cities to concentrate on what is important – new business.
  • Blue Raster’s work on the The D.C. Zoning Map will also be highlighted. This is a web application provided by the DC Office of Zoning that shows 2016 zoning regulations in an interactive way.  An upcoming release will incorporate 3D visualizations, including the ability to search by relevant zoning parameters, examine building shadow covers throughout the day, and view building heights and standards, helping preserve the character of the city while planning future developments.    

Credit:  Blue Raster


Critigen announced that their Story Maps work for the US Forest Service (USFS) is now publicly available here.  The public release is for the Salmon-Challis National Forest – the second phase of the solution.  In the first phase for the Ashley National Forest, Critigen was awarded the USFS Intermountain Region Regional Forester’s Honor Award for Excellence in Science and Technology.   The work is dedicated to rendering relevant geospatial information to inform Forest Planning through standard geospatial desktop tools as well as ArcGIS Online web maps and narrative Story Maps.


Credit:  Critigen


GISinc will feature their GeoIoT™ solution for indoor GIS, and how to integrate emerging IoT sensor hardware with your Esri ArcGIS Software.  The solution has uses in the areas of asset management, indoor navigation and wayfinding, space management/utilization, water and energy management.  Airports, buildings, campuses, healthcare facilities, installations, and public spaces are just some of the places that can utilize this next generation technology.


INCATech will talk about their work on the Dept of State website:  They deployed ArcGIS Online to incorporate dynamic mapping and information about embassies and consulates data to assist those traveling internationally.  The website received 11 million views within 36 hours of deployment.  INCATech will also show a Story Map of the services they offer and a Crowdsourcing Story Map in which attendees can participate to win a prize.


New Light Technologies will showcase their work on the FEMA Incident Journal, which provides a set of interactive dashboards and maps based on ArcGIS Server and ArcGIS Online.  The Incident Journal provides a curated set of authoritative data in real-time to decision makers across the agency’s many divisions and regional offices which need to work together during disaster events.  Because of the successful use during the 2016-17 hurricane seasons, the system is being expanded to incorporate other disaster event types including tornadoes, earthquakes, and floods. 


NorthPoint Geographic Solutions will be demonstrating a number of web application solutions including

  • SmartFor - A new cloud-hosted SaaS GIS Forest Management application which utilizes ArcGIS Online.
  • Cleanups In My Community (CIMC) application - for tracking EPA monitored cleanups throughout the U.S.
  • Zoning Permitting Application - for the public to apply for land use permits. It also includes administrative and inspector functions and utilizes ArcGIS Online and Collector for ArcGIS. 




We will also recognize our small business partners during the annual FSBS Awards, presented by Jack Dangermond onstage following the plenary on Tuesday March 20.  Three partners will receive awards in the categories of Partner of the Year, Innovation Partner, and Collaboration Partner. 


Winners will present their solutions during a session on Wednesday, March 21st “Transformational Small Business Implementations” (1:30-2:30pm, Expo Hall Workshop 2).

Session Abstract:  Federal government agencies rely on small businesses to quickly adopt and implement the latest trends in GIS technology.  These small businesses provide them with new ideas and use cases that allow them to fully exploit the next generation capabilities of GIS. Three small business partners have earned a Federal Small Business Specialty Award in 2018 because of their ability to introduce, implement and extend ArcGIS technology to tackle their customers’ business problems in a transformational way. Hear how these partners improved their customer’s ability to respond to natural disasters, conduct installations inspections, perform environmental damage assessments, as well as better manage their data, space and resources. 


Additional workshop sessions presented by FSBS Partners can be found in the attached custom agenda.



We will conclude the week with the annual small business bootcamp on Thursday March 22.  This occurs the day after the Federal GIS conference in order for new partners and staff to work more closely with Esri sales and professional services staff, and achieve our common objectives around GIS.



To learn more about the Esri FSBS and upcoming events, go to our website at:

The Federal GIS Conference is quickly approaching! We invite you to follow the action between March 20 - 21 on theFedGIS Conference space for live blogging, daily updates and much more 


Plenary Live Blog – Tuesday March 20 

Follow along as the GeoNet Team live blogs with the FedGIS plenary and join the conversation during or after the live blog. 


FedGIS Daily Updates – March 20-21 

Follow the GeoNet team and guest contributors as we share daily updates including what we learn and experience throughout the conference. 


GeoNetarea at FedGIS  March 20-21 

Attending FedGIS? Stop by the GeoNet area in 150 Concourse:  

  • Learn how GeoNet Community members are working better, sharing ideas and finding solutions 
  • Connect with other GeoNet members 
  • See what's coming to GeoNet in 2018 


Know a fellow Esri user who should join GeoNet? Bring them along. We welcome all to the Community. 


We look forward to connecting with you throughout the week.  
See you at the FedGIS Conference. 


Follow @EsriGeoNet on Twitter for even more #FedGIScommentary. 

FedGIS Call for Images

Posted by CLoya-esristaff Employee Jan 24, 2018

FedGIS Conference - Call for Images

Submission deadline is February 23, 2018

We need your help to make this FedGIS conference an inspirational event. We invite you to share some examples of your work and submit up to three images of your best maps, photos, and diagrams for consideration in the 2018 Esri Federal GIS Conference Plenary Session. We are particularly interested in the following:

  • Maps that helped make a decision
  • Maps that support situation awareness and collaboration
  • Maps that helped people understand a complex topic or tell a story
  • Maps that demonstrate the use of spatial analysis, modeling, and science
  • Real-time maps and operational dashboards
  • High-quality base maps and cartographic displays
  • Maps that show the use of imagery analytics
  • 3D maps and visualization
  • Images that depict the use of portals, web maps and apps
  • Screenshots or illustrations of enterprise and distributed GIS architecture
  • Photos or screenshots of people doing their GIS
  • Photos of GIS on mobile devices and in the field

Requirements — TIFF, JPEG and PNG files only

  • Screen shots—72 dpi or 96 dpi. Set your computer display to the highest resolution.
  • Maps—300 dpi when exporting from ArcGIS.
  • Photos—300 dpi preferred

Plenary Submissions | 2018 Esri Federal GIS Conference >>

Welcome to Day Two of the FedGIS coverage and story sharing here on the GeoNet Community!  We hope you enjoyed Day One and we're excited to dive into today's events, sessions and workshops.  


ArcGIS Insights Workshop

To start the day, in one of the morning workshops, Linda Beale and Art Haddad, took us through an intro to ArcGIS Insights.  Lots of good questions were asked by attendees including one popular question about being able to do cross-database joins. Many hands were raised when Linda asked how important that was and she appreciated the feedback and was going to consider it for future releases. Contribute to the workshop conversation here


Why Birds Love the Science of Where: National Audubon Society Keynote



Next, it was time to fly in for the morning keynote from David Yarnold, CEO and President of the National Audubon Society, who shared how they transformed their organization into a more collaborative network with GIS and the Science of Where. Here's a collection of highlights and takeaways. 


Jack welcomed us and introduced the keynote with this video sharing the National Audubon Society story.




In the past, the NAS didn't have a clear vision of the impact and influence of their work. So using the global map image below, David began to help his team transform how the NAS saw itself and understand the global impact of their work.




David, a former leader at the San Jose Mercury news, told a story about how when an oil spill happened in San Jose they used an old base map and just wrote "oil spill on it" in an area that wasn't correct or geographically accurate. He said this was a key moment that inspired and reminded him of why his team needed to leverage the Science of Where in their work. 

David shared that "If you take care of birds, you can take care of the worlds biggest problems" and using GIS and maps empowered his team to communicate this powerful message both to their own organization and the world. "GIS takes ideas out of your head and puts them on the table. When we can all look at it together we can iterate shared visions of the future."


David shared that as they begun to create "a conversation network," their organizational change "aha moment" was driven by GIS in three ways:

  • Sophisticated conversation planning
  • Collaborate workspace 
  • Authoritative, shared data


David shares the five year vision for the National Audubon Society:



Sharing insight from his journalism and media background, David highlighted the importance of using compelling GIS data to engage the media to get the word out about important issues and tell more compelling stories in the press. 


Demonstrating the power of GIS and maps to create real change David shared how this story map about the Piper Polver helped turn a map and data into policy. 


It was a great keynote and we'd love to hear what you thought. Share your comments below!


National Mapping and Imagery Workshop

After the keynote, I swung by the "National Mapping and Imagery: See the Earth, Find the Patterns, and Share the Knowledge" workshop as Mark Romero and Kurt Schwoppe from Esri they explained and demoed how drones, imagery and photogrammetric production in ArcGIS online and Drone2Map is being use to update historical images and enhance current data sets. The use cases highlighted the importance and challenges of collaboration, and how the combination of tech helped local and federal agencies recover from Hurricane Matthew and cast a vision for improving roadways and infrastructure projects. We invite you to continue the workshop conversation here.



Spatial Data Mining I: Essentials of Cluster Analysis workshop

I enjoyed checking out the Spatial Data Mining I: Essentials of Cluster Analysisworkshop hosted by Lauren Bennett and Flora Vale. Using examples of car crime in local communities, they shared helpful details, insights and live demos about the value of doing thoughtful cluster analysis and highlighted how they incorporated the Getis-Ord Gi* Statistic into the hot spot tool set. We invite you to continue the workshop conversation here.






ArcGIS Online Content - Building a Living Atlas of the World workshop

The world (and its digital twin) is always changing and during the Building a Living Atlas of the World session, Sean Breyer and Deane Kensok from the Esri team, showed how the Living Atlas platform gives users a broad set of tools to use.  They shared the depth of the Living Atlas content portfolio (image below) and how big of a role the tools are playing in helping users keeping their imagery data updated and how precise the new imagery tools is. For example, as seen in the image below, the Living Atlas images are can be so precise that you can see the shadows clear enough to tell that baseball players are left and right handed. And this helps users create better maps and data sets. Check out the to get started. We invite you to continue the workshop conversation here:FedGIS Discussion: ArcGIS Online Content - Building a Living Atlas of the World  





And that's a wrap! Thanks for following along on the updates during the FedGIS 2017 Conference. We had a great time connecting and collaborating with you. Let's continue the conversation! Check out other discussions about the events and workshops, start new discussion and ask questions in the FedGIS Conference space. 


Editor's note: We're live blogging the Monday morning plenary on this post. For more discussions and updates this week visit the FedGIS Conference space here in the GeoNet Community. 





FedGIS 2017 is underway! The plenary kicks off as Jack welcomes attendees and continues an Esri conference tradition inviting us to turn around and say "hello" to each other. I had the pleasure of talking with Rolando from the Department of Defense. He's excited to learn more about clean data and GIS. 







Jack jumps in and recognizes the Winners of the Global Content Challenge, and then David Lilley of the Department of Homeland Security is awarded the "Making a Difference award. David thanks Jack and says this recognition and important work is because of "the power of partnerships built with Esri. 


Jack shares his vision of the future of GIS and it's impact on the world: "If we're going to have a positive future. It's going to take us working together to make it work." 


Jack shares the Science of Where. "What is it? It's the "Geography and Technology of GIS coming together." 


"Humans have never been more capable, now is the time to apply the Science of Where. We need to scale it out.  realize what is possible and collaborate among all levels of our organizations." 



Jack highlights the impact and power of GIS in government agency and projects. 





Jack dives into sharing how Big Data, Imagery and Real-time are key elements to Esri platform and they are impacting GIS and together they changing how we understand our world. 


Jack shares that "Smart means real-time. This is so exciting!" He then welcomes David Attaway who demonstrates the power of Insights showing it as a powerful platform and tool to fight global terrorism and its sociogeographic impact. 





Tim Clark shares how ArcGIS Pro is improving workflows through wildfires. He takes us through a real-time use case and shows us how to use the 3D imagery and space time cube.  "You can maximize your data and apply it to the meaning of your symbology. ArcGIS Pro is a connected environment and this integration can make your workflows easier."  






A portal to portal cross-agency use case shows how the Fusion Center in Virginia is collaborating with partners to better understand and address issues caused by heroine overdoses in their local counties. 




Jack shares the new stats on ArcGIS online:

  • 3.8 Million users 
  • 1 Billion day map views 
  • 7.9 million items
  • 18.8 million open data downloads 




Jack takes us through the ArcGIS Enterprise and its new distributed architecture, and then gives us a tour of the ArcGIS Hub that's a new cloud-based GIS for community engagement. 




Heading into the break Jack thanks the audience. "Geography has never been so important. It's enabling the Science of Where and creating a platform for creating a better future.  You've made it come alive. You're building the maps that run our country. It's a great privilege to serve and work with you." 


We're taking a short break on the plenary and will be back shortly.  What did you think so far? Share your thoughts and feedback in the comments! 



And we're back! A video about the "Science of Where" welcomes us back.



Then Tyson Quink takes us through what's new in ArcGIS online: 


  • Vector basemaps 
  • Joined features tool  
  • Publishing WSFS servers in web maps 
  • New and improved Smart mapping and 3D
  • Analysis tools, vector tiles and more. 
  • Publish to 3D mapping and Droan2map



Federal Aviation Administration team takes us through how they use ArcGIS to make sure planes stay out off restricted airspace when landing in Washington DC and flying for passengers remains safe and uneventful so you can send that happily send that "just landed" text to your family." 



Did you know...?

  • 690,000 drones are in operation since they first become legal to fly in recent years. 
  • Drones can freely fly below 400 feet but the FAA still has to figure out how we balance legal drone flight paths with maintaining safe airspace that is always dynamic and changing. (yes, they use ArcGIS to do it)





 The Chesapeake Conservatory team shows how they are using ArcGIS Pro to better understand and solve watershed issues. "In the past this type of data processing might take a week, with ArcGIS Pro we are able process 3.8 billion pixels of NAIP imagery in high resolution in 5 minutes."





The Ardent MC team shares how they used the Operations Dashboard to bring teams together to make decisions, synchronize data and promote operational awareness.  


They also shared 3 tips to create Operational Awareness with GIS:

1. Paperwork before process. Do this first before begin your projects. 

2. Get to know the gatekeepers. Build relationships and educate those who are the influential and on the front lines.

3. Agile Management approach. Agile isn't just for product development use it to manage your teams and change how you work. 




We have apps! Chris from the Esri team takes us through how you can take GIS into the field via the helpful workforce friendly and mobile Field Apps.



The Loudoun county team takes us through their new GeoHub and share how they're using it to improve the lives of the local families and businesses. 





And that's a wrap! We hope you enjoyed the plenary presentations. What did you think of the talks and demos? Share your thoughts and comments below. 


Thanks for following along during this live blog. As the conference continues, be sure to join the discussions and daily update conversations in the FedGIS Conference space.  


Hi everyone - We're here in Washington, D.C. and excited to get started at the FedGIS Conference! Attendees are making their way in and grabbing their Esri swag bags and heading into the plenary. We'll be live blogging the plenary here on a separate blog post. You can follow that live blog for Monday morning plenary.


Then over the next two days, we'll be starting separate session conversations and sharing updates as the event unfolds. Remember to follow the FedGIS Conference space to get the updates and join the conversations. 


Enjoy your time and thanks for following along. We look forward to your contributions!



After the plenary, it was time to grab some lunch and listen in on a meaningful You Got The Job...Now What? panel discussion hosted by the Esri Young Professional team. The guest panel, which also included Esri owner Jack Dangermond, shared their collective career wisdom and insightful personal stories about how to build and cultivate productive relationships to further your career. 


Feeling inspired and ready for the afternoon adventure, I headed downstairs to explore and see what was buzzing on the Expo floor of FedGIS. 


The sires went off as I soaked up knowledge about how law enforcement in Philadelphia is using ArcGIS Pro to map crimes, fires and gang violence to help local investigators discover patterns and make better decisions when fighting crimes. Good to know the good guys in Philly are using the Science of Where and ArcGIS Pro to make their neighborhoods safer. 



After the informative fire drill, I headed upstairs to get into data Sciences mode during the Analyzing Multidimensional Scientific Data in ArcGIS"  workshop. I learned a lot about what "on-the-fly rasta analysis using Raster Functions" looks like when you're trying to understand ice concentration anomalies using NOAA CTSR data. Cool stuff!




I then slipped on the VR goggles and jumped into an immersive version of downtown Savanah, Georgia created by the team at SCAD who made this virtual world in 5 weeks using city engine. The project is a first step in figuring out how virtual reality, augmented reality and 3D printing can help improve data sets and create a more accurate digital version of the world around us. It was a pleasure talking with the SCAD team about their project because our chat led to a fantastic discussion that covered GIS and emerging tech, digital parenting and how the GeoNet Community has helped other SCAD student solve geospatial problems. 





Day One ended with a great workshop about how citizen apps are growing in use and helping to crowdsource and fund the development of citizen science. 



We hope you enjoyed following along as we cruised through Day One of FedGIS 2017! What were your highlights and favorite moments? What did you learn today? Thanks for sharing! 


Stay tuned for more tomorrow and check out other discussions in the FedGIS Conference space.  

We're excited to announce that next week we'll be onsite at the FedGIS 2017 conference in Washington, DC.  During the week we'll be live blogging, sharing updates and starting collaborative session conversations here in the FedGIS Conference space and other groups throughout the GeoNet community.  Whether you're attending the event or following along virtually, we invite you to join the FedGIS conversation on GeoNet.


What topics, sessions and conference events are you most excited about? 


Thanks for joining and we look forward to seeing you and your contributions!