Introduction.Geographic Information Systems (GIS) data collections and services within the library environment are not new concepts. For years libraries have been active in collecting geospatial data and handling GIS-related reference questions. In the early 1990s librarians often contributed to the literature while researching and learning the best methods for developing geospatial collections and incorporating GIS services in libraries. But during the last ten years, while there have been enormous advancements in the field, the literature related to GIS in libraries has been somewhat scarce. In a time when librarians are busy perfecting their technical GIS skills, creating and defining service models, working closely with data producers, discovering new ways of building collections, and researching ways to archive and preserve digital geospatial data, it is only appropriate that the current issues and topics within the field of GIS librarianship be high-lighted in the literature.
In this first-ever issue of Library Trends dedicated to GIS and libraries, we present thirteen authors contributing ten profoundly informative articles that address a variety of current issues and trends in the field. These authors share their experience, expertise, and opinions regarding the most prominent concerns within the field of GIS librarianship today. In an effort to create a comprehensive issue that spans the most current and relevant topics, careful consideration was made in the selection of articles included in this issue.
This introduction provides a brief overview of the topics covered in this issue and gives readers a taste of the diversity of these topics. Readers will see emerging trends among the topics in several articles, particularly those related to geospatial data acquisitions, distribution, and preservation. They will also gain exposure to new ideas "New Ideas" is the debut single by Scottish New Wave/Indie Rock act The Dykeenies. It was first released as a Double A-side with "Will It Happen Tonight?" on July 17, 2006. The band also recorded a video for the track. related to GIS mentoring programs, analysis of GIS reference statistics, the application of centralized and distributed GIS service models, and geoarchiving.
The issue of how libraries acquire geospatial data is a prevalent one in this collection of articles. Many of the articles discuss the subject but focus on different aspects of building data collections. One author has devoted his entire article to geospatial data collection development. Patrick Florance from Tufts University Tufts University, main campus at Medford, Mass.; coeducational; chartered 1852 by Universalists as a college for men. It became a university in 1955. Jackson College, formerly a coordinate undergraduate college for women, merged with the College of Liberal Arts in presents some of the current issues related to building geospatial data collections within libraries. He begins with a fundamental discussion of the nature of geospatial data and stresses the importance of understanding data types, formats, and scales. Florance provides examples of some important considerations essential to successful geospatial data collection development: cost, availability, licensing, distribution policies, documentation and metadata, software, and hardware. Along with these examples, he offers suggestions for success based on his experience building the geospatial data collection at Harvard University Harvard University, mainly at Cambridge, Mass., including Harvard College, the oldest American college. Harvard College
Harvard College, originally for men, was founded in 1636 with a grant from the General Court of the Massachusetts Bay Colony. .
The process by which data are distributed to library users depends on many factors including size, format complexity, and potential restrictions applied to the data as a result of copyright or license agreements created by data producers. Libraries striving to build collections of geospatial data are increasingly faced with a variety of legal issues related to these agreements. Patti Day and Chieko Maene, former Digital Spatial Data Data that is represented as 2D or 3D images. A geographic information system (GIS) is one of the primary applications of spatial data (land maps). See spatial analysis, spatial resolution and GIS glossary. Librarians at the University of Wisconsin--Milwaukee, write about their experiences dealing with copyright restrictions and license agreements applied to several sets of geospatial data acquired by the American Geographical Society American Geographical Society (AGS), oldest geographical society in the United States, founded 1852 in New York City. Its purpose is to advance the science of geography through discussion and publication. Library (AGSL AGSL American Gem Society Laboratories (Las Vegas, Nevada)
AGSL American Geographical Society Library
AGSL Applied Global Systems Lab ). Day and Maene's article includes a well-researched overview of relevant legal issues and a discussion of freedom of information laws at the federal level and open records laws at the state level to help guide other libraries facing challenges in providing access to licensed geospatial data.
Expanding on the subject of geospatial data dissemination, Tsering Wangyal Shawa from Princeton University Princeton University, at Princeton, N.J.; coeducational; chartered 1746, opened 1747, rechartered 1748, called the College of New Jersey until 1896. Schools and Research Facilities
writes about his experience developing a system to provide library users with the ability to access many different forms of geographic information via the Internet. Shawa explains the processes by which paper map collections are digitized, metadata records are created, and imagery is made available for preview and direct download from Princeton's Digital Map and Geospatial Information Center. He provides detailed examples of various software packages and development technologies utilized in the project.
Building relationships with data producers is an essential role a librarian must play in order to ensure library users have the ability to access the wealth of geospatial data being produced today. In a well-researched article, Gall Steinhart of Cornell University Cornell University, mainly at Ithaca, N.Y.; with land-grant, state, and private support; coeducational; chartered 1865, opened 1868. It was named for Ezra Cornell, who donated $500,000 and a tract of land. With the help of state senator Andrew D. writes on the issue of geospatial data collections in libraries, but she focuses more on library-data producer relationships. She discusses the importance of building these relationships and talks about how the formulation of an actual data management and distribution policy can help define critical parameters within a partnership. Issues taken into consideration on both sides of an agreement include intellectual property rights, liability issues, distribution methods, data management practices, and security risks posed by geospatial data. Steinhart draws on knowledge gained from her experiences formulating a policy for the Cornell University Geospatial Information Repository An information repository is an easy to deploy secondary tier of data storage that can comprise multiple, networked data storage technologies running on diverse operating systems, where data that no longer needs to be in primary storage is protected, classified according to captured (CUGIR CUGIR Cornell University Geospatial Information Repository ).
Charging into the frontier of geospatial Web services (1) Loosely, any online service delivered over the Web. Such usage appears in articles from non-technical sources, but not in IT-oriented publications, because definition #2 below describes the correct use of the term. , Steve Morris Steve 'Slippery' Morris was an Australian rugby League footballer.
A halfback, Morris played for the Dapto club. In the 1978 season he gained selection in the New South Wales Country Rugby League side and was then chosen to represent Australia, making Morris the last player from North Carolina State University History
While Morris introduces the concern of long-term preservation of geospatial data, Julie Sweetkind-Singer and Tracey Erwin of Stanford University Stanford University, at Stanford, Calif.; coeducational; chartered 1885, opened 1891 as Leland Stanford Junior Univ. (still the legal name). The original campus was designed by Frederick Law Olmsted. David Starr Jordan was its first president. , along with Mary Larsgaard of the University of California The University of California has a combined student body of more than 191,000 students, over 1,340,000 living alumni, and a combined systemwide and campus endowment of just over $7.3 billion (8th largest in the United States). at Santa Barbara Santa Barbara (săn'tə bär`brə, –bərə), city (1990 pop. 85,571), seat of Santa Barbara co., S Calif., on the Pacific Ocean; inc. 1850. (UCSB UCSB University of California at Santa Barbara
UCSB University of Casual Sex and Beer ), write specifically on this subject. They define and discuss issues such as data versioning, copyright, the complexity of geospatial file formats, and how these issues pose unique challenges when thinking about the ways libraries can preserve the information contained within geospatial files. Sweetkind-Singer, Erwin, and Larsgaard lay the foundation for their article by discussing the research and development currently taking place with a grant from the NDIIPP, awarded to both Stanford and UCSB. As part of this project, the development of two prototype archives for housing data and the creation of a format registry to describe the data being stored will assist in answering some very important geospatial data preservation questions.
Over the years many libraries have established collections of geospatial data, but how many have developed and implemented GIS services? In a comprehensive account of how the University of Kansas The University of Kansas (often referred to as KU or just Kansas) is an institution of higher learning in Lawrence, Kansas. The main campus resides atop Mount Oread. developed a GIS service model, Rhonda Houser describes how libraries can begin to offer services aimed at assisting library users with using GIS software This is a list of notable GIS software applications. See also the comparison of GIS software. Open source software
Most widely used open source applications:
Reference services related to GIS can run the gamut in variations of applications, complexity and depth of research problems, technical abilities required to perform analytical operations within GIS software, and challenges in locating the proper data sources. Keeping well-documented statistics on the types of reference questions and how they are answered is a way to create a database of knowledge that could be turned into instructional guides aimed at providing users with quick access to answers to their questions. Until now, research related to the analysis of GIS reference statistics and the quality of GIS consultations in academic libraries is virtually absent in the literature. Abraham Parrish from Yale University Yale University, at New Haven, Conn.; coeducational. Chartered as a collegiate school for men in 1701 largely as a result of the efforts of James Pierpont, it opened at Killingworth (now Clinton) in 1702, moved (1707) to Saybrook (now Old Saybrook), and in 1716 was describes four years of accumulated reference statistics. He relates the analysis of these statistics to the librarian's ability to provide effective consultations. Based on his database of over 5,700 records, Parrish provides examples of a wide variety of questions, the average amount of reference time spent with each library user, different types of library users utilizing GIS reference services, and total average megabytes of data disseminated to a library user at a given time. He compares GIS reference techniques and processes with other traditional library reference techniques and processes to show how GIS requires more of a "consulting" approach.
GIS services in academic libraries attract users from many departments or centers on campus. To achieve success, services developed within the library should be directed toward the needs of a broad user community and should fit into the larger service model architecture of the university. In an interesting discussion of two different models, Joe Aufmuth from the University of Florida University of Florida is the third-largest university in the United States, with 50,912 students (as of Fall 2006) and has the eighth-largest budget (nearly $1.9 billion per year). UF is home to 16 colleges and more than 150 research centers and institutes. defines both the distributed and centralized models of GIS services and data delivery methods from the enterprise GIS perspective. Viewing the academic library as an enterprise, he compares the advantages and disadvantages of these service models. Following a descriptive explanation of both models, he suggests that for some, the best method for providing GIS services may be the result of a hybrid of the two models. Aufmuth cites specific examples of both service models at the University of Florida and Florida International University Florida International University, primarily at University Park, Miami; coeducational; chartered 1965, opened 1972. A research university, it has 18 colleges and schools and many specialized centers and institutes, including those in biomedical engineering, database .
Reference and instruction services are successful when there are knowledgeable staff members available to assist library users with complex research questions or problems. Kim Ricker of the University of Maryland University of Maryland can refer to:
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non . Her innovative ideas offer a fresh perspective on developing a mentoring program designed to train a staff capable of handling the highly specialized and technical aspects of GIS reference and instruction services. She includes an informative ten-point framework for GIS mentoring largely based on her experiences implementing such a program with graduate assistants at the University of Maryland.
A shift in how libraries are developing and delivering GIS data collections to library users represents the most definitive trend in the field today. Geospatial Web services, library--data producer relationships, and license or copyright issues are just a few trends that illustrate the different ways libraries now deal with GIS collections and services in contrast to methods of the past.
The purpose of this special "GIS in Libraries" Library Trends issue is not only to discuss the current issues within the field but also to provide an opportunity for readers to learn from what other libraries have accomplished with regard to GIS collections and services in the last decade. Through the experiences documented by these authors, readers will learn about new ways to develop and share their geospatial collections, how to create effective service models and mentor staff, why data-sharing relationships are important, and why it is absolutely essential to think about best practices for archiving and preserving geospatial data.
Jaime Stoltenberg is the Map and Geographic Information Systems (GIS) Librarian at the University of Wisconsin-Madison's Arthur H. Robinson Arthur H. Robinson (January 5, 1915 – October 19, 2004) was an American geographer and cartographer.
He was born in Montreal, Quebec, Canada to American parents, but came to the United States, and spent much of his career in academia and research at the University of Map Library where she manages a collection of over 500,000 items and provides reference services in all subject areas related to maps, geography, cartography cartography: see map.
Art and science of representing a geographic area graphically, usually by means of a map or chart. Political, cultural, or other nongeographic features may be superimposed. , geospatial data, and GIS. Jaime has experience in the acquisition and management of geospatial data collections as well as GIS software and project management within the academic library environment.