A new Esri Press book, GIS for Science: Applying Mapping & Spatial Analytics, edited by Dawn Wright and Christian Harder, is due for release this summer, time for the UC. Every attendee of the Esri Science Symposium on Tuesday of the UC will receive a free copy.
This book is about how many things geospatial, including geospatial data science, are a force multiplier for great science writ large, especially as enabled by geographic information systems (GIS). However, rather than a dry research monograph, this book is much more visual, along the lines of Wired magazine meets National Geographic, and thus for a broader Scientific-American-type audience. It will also have a comprehensive accompanying web site, GISforScience.com, where data, maps, videos, web apps, story maps, workflows and snippets of computer code, including Python notebooks, from the chapters will be freely available.
We increasingly see GIS used as part of scientific workflows to address a broad range of critically-important problems. The chapters in this book show how GIS, particularly Web GIS, provides an objective platform for effectively conducting and sharing scientific research. At a time in history when so many indicators of long-term sustainability are pointing in the wrong direction, I think we can all agree that the world desperately needs spatial applications of the very best in scientific thinking. Hence we have assembled this collection of great examples from across the scientific spectrum (with more to come in a second volume next year).
The Table of Contents includes a very strong cast of scholars working at the intersection of GIS and science, and from institutions such as Harvard, the University of Minnesota, the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), The Nature Conservancy (TNC), and the National Audubon Society, the US Geological Survey (USGS), and more.
An introductory reflection is written by Kathryn Sullivan, retired NASA astronaut and former NOAA administrator.
Praise for the book is pouring in. This a sample of endorsements from as many as 35 scientists who have read a special advance copy:
Staff Writer, The Atlantic; former Chief Speechwriter for President Jimmy Carter
"This book is beautiful as well as illuminating, and it dramatizes the ways in which the new science of geospatial information is enriching and empowering all other scientific disciplines."
Environmental scientist, Marine ecologist, former Administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (2009-2013); former U.S. Science Envoy for the Ocean (2014-2016); University Distinguished Professor
Director, Institute on the Environment, University of Minnesota
“There is no better tool to understand our place in the world than GIS, and this book puts its power on beautiful display. It’s a book for scientists and all of Earth’s stewards.”
Vice President of The Nature Conservancy; Chair, Science Advisory Board, NOAA
“'The Science of Where' comes alive in GIS for Science. The book is, yes, informative, helping us understand how the world works, how it looks, and how we see it through images, maps, and more. Above all, it is dazzling, combining knowledge with a sense of wonder, bringing a desire to press for more discovery, and invoking a deep appreciation for why smart decisions spring from taking science to action.”
Several of us are away at two fairly large scientific conferences, the 2019 American Association of Geographers Annual Meeting (AAG) and the 2019 European Geosciences Union General Assembly (EGU), both ranging from 9000-15,000 attendees. Here is a sampling of the scientific research being presented:
AAG 2019 Symposium on Frontiers in Geospatial Data Science
And papers/posters by Esri staff at EGU:
Esri Romania Esri Consultant: Assessing the performance of various machine learning algorithms for forest disturbance mapping
Esri Germany Melanie Brandmeier: Coupling Deep Learning and GIS for forest damage assessment based on high-resolution remote sensing data
Esri Germany Melanie Brandmeier: Lithological classification using multi-sensor data and Convolutional Neural Networks
The Citizen Science Association 2019 conference is almost here and we can’t wait. As a sponsor, Esri has a booth making it easier to meet up. Wednesday, March 13 afternoon, I’m leading a hands-on workshop creating Esri Story Maps to inform, engage and inspire people with your citizen science story. Joining me are Michelle Tamez, Science Delivery Specialist, USDA. Forest Service Washington Office – Ecosystem Management Coordination Staff and Lain Graham, Esri Solution Engineer.
During the poster session from 4:45-6:45pm on Thursday, March 14 stop by these posters. Lain Graham will discuss the project 'Drones for Good: GIS and Drone Technology for Academic and Scientific Research' conducted while at the University of Central Florida working with the Citizen Science GIS organization. Thomas Ray with the North Carolina State University/Wake County 4-H Youth Development and some of his 4-H students would love to share with you their experience with data collection utilizing ArcGIS. Find them near the "Youth Digital Data Collection in the Field" poster.
We are excited to be a part of the citizen science community. Looking forward to meeting you in Raleigh, NC.
NEW THIS YEAR: SCIENTIFIC WORKSHOPS
For the first time in its history AGU is facilitating the offering of half and full-day scientific workshops. Esri took advantage of the opportunity and is involved in:
Emerging Data Science and Machine Learning Opportunities in the Weather and Climate Sciences (WS34 - Workshop Outline)
Christiane Jablonowski (University of Michigan)
Sudhir Shrestha (Esri)
Vipin Kumar (University of Minnesota)
Orhun Aydin (Esri)
Amy McGovern (University of Oklahoma)
Daniel Cooley (Colorado State University)
Imme Ebert-Uphoff (Colorado State University)
Kevin Reed (Stony Brook University)
Dawn Wright (Esri) also speaking and serving on the final panel
Thursday, December 13, 2018, 8:00 a.m.-4:00 p.m.
Fee (Regular/Student): $150/$75
Constitution AB and B Corridor, Grand Hyatt - Estimated number of participants = 150
Especially for: Atmospheric Sciences, Earth and Space Science Informatics, Global Environmental Change, Hydrology, Natural Hazards, Nonlinear Geophysics, Ocean Sciences
The disciplines of atmospheric science and data science are at a crossroads and about to experience scientific breakthroughs that are comparable to the revolution in bioinformatics over the last decade. This multidisciplinary workshop brings together atmospheric researchers, data scientists, statisticians, engineers, tech companies, program managers, educators, students, and stakeholders to discuss newly emerging data science and machine learning opportunities for the atmospheric sciences. In particular, high-impact weather and climate events will serve as the science driver to explore the novel field of physics-aware, theory-guided data science.
The OceanObs RCN builds on the efforts to network ocean observing groups conducted over the past 5 years. This meeting seeks to advance links between observation networks and operational users to facilitate the delivery of critical information to stakeholders. We will discuss a decadal vision addressing critical policy issues that require multidisciplinary ocean observing systems, including discussion about the forthcoming Decade of Ocean Science for Sustainable Development (2021-2030) proposed by the IOC (https://en.unesco.org/ocean-decade), and balancing ocean observations, science, use, and conservation requirements. Dawn Wright on the organizing committee.
The target audience member is a graduate student, who has spent the last 7 years studying science and has forgotten how to use more elementary terms to explain his/her research. However, any Fall Meeting registrant may attend (and have attended) this panel. The panel will be moderated by science writer Yudhijit Bhattacharjee. Panel session and accompanying lunch sponsored by AGU's Sharing Science Program.
View and search the entire 2018 AGU Fall Meeting Program at this link.
Updated: January 14, 2019
Science at Esri continues to evolve on many exciting fronts, as we focus on supporting both basic and applied science, while also recognizing that there are many major themes of compelling interest to society that will drive scientific research for the next several decades. Thus we view science as helping us to understand not only how the Earth works, but also how the Earth looks (e.g., by way of geodesign), and how we look at the Earth (i.e., by way of Earth observation in varying forms and the accompanying data science issues of analysis, modeling, developing and documenting useful datasets for science, interoperating between these datasets and between various approaches). These are, in fact, examples of The Science of WhereTM.
There are many major themes of compelling interest to society that will drive scientific research, at least for the next two decades. And thus we view science as helping us to understand not only how the Earth works, but how the Earth should look, and how we should look at the Earth.
In addition to supporting the science community, we seek to do good science at Esri ourselves, as it underpins much of what we do as an organization. This is helping us to evolve ArcGIS into a comprehensive geospatial platform for science; a platform that supports research project management and collaboration, spatial analysis, visualization, open data, and communication of science, all at multiple scales (i.e., from individual researcher to lab workgroup, to multi-department, multi-university, university-to-agency collaboration, to citizen engagement).
There are many natural science domains in which GIS is being used effectively to understand how the Earth works. At Esri, these are the sciences that we are particularly strong in.
Along these lines, Esri is fairly well known to research labs, universities, and other places where great science is done as a vendor of GIS technology. However, Esri continues to work toward contributing as a MEMBER of the scientific community as well. We define the "science community" as scientists within universities, research institutes, government agencies, non-governmental organizations (NGOs), and similar. As such, Esri maintains objective scientific representation on various scientific boards and councils, including several of the committees within these bodies that accomplish important tasks over the long-term. Examples include:
Esri also serves on various advisory boards or collaborative research teams for specific scientific projects, such as:
Across the entire Esri organization we have an Ocean GIS initiative that was built on a comprehensive strategic plan. We're also working with a growing list of terrific partners.
There are several ways to keep abreast of science developments at Esri:
This diagram shows the various aspects of our comprehensive program to support the science community, showing the interlinkages between and among universities, government agencies, and various consultancies, nonprofits, for profits, and other organizations focused on science. Contact the Chief Scientist, Dawn Wright, dwright-at-esri.com, for more information.
We are pleased to share a recap of the Esri User Conference Science Symposium, featuring the amazing climate scientist, Dr. Camilo Mora of the University of Hawaii. Unfortunately, we did not have the resources to record the session and Dr. Mora is unable to release his full slide deck due to the sensitivity of some material. But please find this Wakelet social media compilation --> 2018 Esri Science Symposium - Wakelet . And you can download the introductory slide deck of Esri Chief Scientist Dawn Wright at http://esriurl.com/symposium18 .
The new NOAA Climate Explorer developed with the Esri JS API launched publicly this week. Climate Explorer is a rich resource featuring more than just maps. This link will take you to an example map view in the new version …
- NOAA Climate Program Office, with NEMAC, created the original US Climate Explorer in 2014 with opensource tech
- NEMAC and NOAA, with support from Fernleaf, have rewritten the Climate Explorer with the Esri JS API, and are integrating Living Atlas content directly into it.
o The new site has an impressive multi-scale explorer interface for various layers, swipe tools, charts…. 6k grids for US/ or options for county-level aggregation
- An update is planned with deeper Living Atlas and Story Map integration, launching early fall
- Current case studies on the Climate Explorer site are being transitioned to Story Maps, including integration with the National Water Model for example.
- NOAA Climate Program Office Director is pleased with the change to the ArcGIS JS API, and supportive of the planned Living Atlas enhancements
- The new site is hosted on a NEMAC server, to ensure continuity during potential government shutdowns
Primary collaborators include;
- UNC-Asheville’s NEMAC (National Environmental Modeling and Analysis Center – 2016 SAG Award for Research and Science),
- Fernleaf Interactive, an Esri Startup co-located with NEMAC at Asheville’s Climate Collider (collaborative office space)
- NEMAC spun-off Fernleaf two years ago to handle commercial demand for resilience consulting to local gov market
- Fernleaf is sharing AccelAdapt workflows (which leverage the Climate Explorer)
- Climate Explorer will feed inputs to AccelAdapt via the living Atlas in fall release
- Fernleaf will be in the StartUp Zone at the Esri UC for the 2nd year.
This is an exemplar of an academic research team spinning-off a thriving Esri Startup, then providing the Climate Explorer as a critical public/ private partnership.
As an attendee of either the 2018 Esri Education Summit or the 2018 Esri User Conference, you are warmly invited to a special event, the Esri Science Symposium.
When & Where:
Tuesday, July 10, 2018
San Diego Convention Center (SDCC) Ballroom 20 D
The 2018 symposium will include the following:
This event seeks to broaden the tent of Esri UC participation—beyond the traditional geographers and GIScientists—to include those working in the domain sciences (e.g., ocean science, hydrology, ecology, forestry, climate science, geology/geophysics, agricultural science, conservation biology, sustainability science and/or geodesign, health sciences, and the social sciences). A further aim is to strengthen the links between Esri and the scientific community, while (re)crystallizing a community of scientists at the Esri UC who normally attend disparate sessions throughout the week.
Please feel free to share this invitation (including the RSVP link) with others who might be interested.
We look forward to seeing you in San Diego this July!
Dawn Wright, Esri Chief Scientist
Jack Dangermond, Esri President and CEO
RSVP for the Symposium at esriurl.com/rsvp
See this important blog post by Orhun Aydin of Esri's Spatial Statistics Team where he describes different means of integrating space into scientific problem solving, with an eye toward generic (non-spatial) machine learning, spatial machine learning, and non-spatial machine learning with geoenriched predictors.
Esri Chief Scientist Dawn Wright is an invited speaker for the 4D Workshop: Deep-time Data Driven Discovery and the Evolution of Earth
The 4-D Workshop will be convened June 4-6, 2018 in Washington DC with sponsorship by NASA, the USGS, the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, the Sloan Foundation, the Keck Foundation, the Earth Life Science Institute (Japan), the Carnegie Institution for Science, the Templeton Foundation, and others.
The Senior Advisory Council for the event includes the current President of the National Academy of Sciences (Marcia McNutt), the former president of the National Science Foundation (Rita Colwell), the former corporate vice president of Microsoft (Tony Hey), Chief Data Officer of NOAA Ed Kearns, Director of Scripps Institution of Oceanography Margaret Leinen, Executive Director and CEO of the American Geophysical Union (AGU) Christine McEntee, Executive Director of the Federation of Earth Science Information Partners (ESIP) Erin Robinson.
The objective of the event is to “explore ways to advance our understanding of Earth’s complex co-evolving geosphere and biosphere through the collection, analysis, and visualization of large and growing data resources. It is a prelude to a potential long-term program to invent, modify, and apply emerging methods of data analysis and visualization to elucidate our planet’s past, present, and future. Earth’s evolution has been an intertwined succession of increasingly complex physical, chemical, and biological events. Therefore, 4D’s organizing principal is an integrated approach that will enable humankind to achieve a comprehensive picture of the co-evolution of life and rocks, while collaborating with research teams around the world.”
The workshop results will tie into the Keck- and Sloan-supported Deep-Time Data Infrastructure: (http://dtdi.carnegiescience.edu).
Dawn Wright has been asked to speak at the first plenary session on the second day of the event, on "Artificial intelligence and machine learning for Earth surface data and conservation priorities" (with thanks to Omar Maher, David Gadsden, and Nathan Shephard for materials). She has also been asked to participate in and possibly chair breakout sessions, will be presenting a poster on Esri’s phase 2 of the Ecological Marine Units, and may be contributing content to the Workshop's White Paper.
Esri and the National Science Foundation (NSF)-funded initiative known as EarthCube have today signed an informal Memorandum of Agreement (MOA). EarthCube was initiated by the NSF in 2011 to "transform geoscience research by developing cyberinfrastructure to improve access, sharing, visualization, and analysis of all forms of geosciences data and related resources." It is also a "quickly growing community of scientists across all geoscience domains, as well as geoinformatics researchers and data scientists."
As Esri Chief Scientist I have been pleased to serve on the EarthCube Liaison Team since 2014 and have built a "Mapping the Landscape" story map for the team which has been presented at several EarthCube-related meetings. We hope that this project will continue and merge with similar efforts at ESIP (Federation of Earth Science Information Partners), AGU (American Geophysical Union), and RDA (Research Data Alliance). The MOA was developed and signed by way of the Liaison Team and joint activities to be pursued include:
Toward this end, there will be the free exchange of emails, literature, computer code, and data where appropriate between Esri and the EarthCube community.
Esri Product Engineers/Data Scientists Shaun Walbridge, and Marjean Pobuda led the charge on a new peer-reviewed journal article about the open-source extension from Esri known as the Benthic Terrain Modeler (BTM). The paper describes the tools provided with the current release of BTM (v 3.0), highlighting powerful analytical workflows that combine ArcGIS with the Python scientific stack (aka SciPy), and the R statistical programming language (including the R-ArcGIS Bridge). BTM is used by scores of researchers around the world, and has been accessible for some time via ArcGIS Online at http://esriurl.com/btm (nearly 7500 views).
High resolution remotely sensed bathymetric data is rapidly increasing in volume, but analyzing this data requires a mastery of a complex toolchain of disparate software, including computing derived measurements of the environment. Bathymetric gradients play a fundamental role in energy transport through the seascape. Benthic Terrain Modeler (BTM) uses bathymetric data to enable simple characterization of benthic biotic communities and geologic types, and produces a collection of key geomorphological variables known to affect marine ecosystems and processes. BTM has received continual improvements since its 2008 release; here we describe the tools and morphometrics BTM can produce, the research context which this enables, and we conclude with an example application using data from a protected reef in St. Croix, US Virgin Islands.
The paper is open access (#openscience) and part of a special issue on Marine Geomorphometry - http://www.mdpi.com/journal/geosciences/special_issues/marine_geomorphometry - featuring other studies that use GIS, including ArcGIS, as well.
WARNING: Last Jedi Spoiler Alert!
This is a re-posting of a blog piece by Lou Woodley, Community Engagement Specialist for AAAS's Trellis Science and Program Director of AAAS Community Engagement Fellows. I have posted it here because of the many helpful parallels to GeoNet.