Geographic Information Systems (GIS) have proven to be an effective tool for Emergency Management. Simple maps have become smarter and hold more information than ever before. But GIS is more than a map, more than identifying features. GIS is about combining bits of information that are related to each other based on their location, in order to make more informed decisions. A GIS gives a whole new perspective to data analysis; it enables a person to visualize patterns, relationships, and trends in a way that lists and tables just can’t. This presentation will provide a basic primer on GIS for emergency managers, and will discuss some of the benefits that GIS can provide. This will include specific examples of recent events where GIS was used, including the St Anthony Bridge collapse, the Republican National Convention, and statewide flood response. We will look at how GIS was used for these events and talk about lessons learned. This is not a technical presentation about how to use GIS, but instead will focus on the benefits of GIS to the field of Emergency Management.
- Location is critical.
- You can't help someone if you can't find them.
- GIS is a powerful tool for Emergency Management.
- GIS turns data into information.
About Joella Givens
Joella Givens currently leads Metro District GIS Business Relations for MN.IT Services@DOT, managing GIS Support for MnDOT’s Metropolitan District. Over her career she has accomplished innovative GIS work for the Mn State Legislature, Mn DNR, MnDOT, Washington County, and the private sector. She served on the Minnesota GIS/LIS Consortium Board of Directors for 7 years, including holding the positions of Conference Chair and Board Chair, and helping with numerous GIS/LIS workshops, conferences, and other educational events. In 2006 the Consortium presented Joella with the Polaris Leadership Award. Joella is currently a Deputy Director for the FBI InfraGard P2CAT program in Minnesota. She is a licensed First Responder and certified as an Emergency Manager in the State of Minnesota.