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Fifth Annual Survey & Engineering GIS Summit in Review

Survey and Engineering GIS SummitCollaboration and new opportunities were clearly evident during the Fifth Annual Esri Survey & Engineering GIS Summit. Brent Jones, Esri survey and engineering industry solutions manager, kicked off the event by relaying the importance of a strong relationship among surveyors, engineers, and GIS professionals to more than 400 attendees. "Surveyors and engineers are continuing to integrate GIS into their workflows," Jones said. "The increased attendance this year demonstrates the growing interest in using GIS to make their operations more efficient." Presentations focused on important issues in infrastructure development, demonstrations of new developments in Esri's software, and networking opportunities.

Keynote Presentation

Stig Enemark, president of the International Federation of Surveyors (FIG) and former president of the Danish Association of Chartered Surveyors, emphasized the critical role of surveyors. "The role of the survey professional is to provide data and mapping and to be able to manage it by providing land systems," Enemark said, then continued his presentation with detailed examples of mapping and surveying projects throughout the world. "It's all about people, human rights, politics, good government, places, and shelter."

Special Engineering Presentation

Herb McKim, PE, of McKim & Creed, P.A., addressed the importance of GIS professionals working with engineers and surveyors to develop effective planning and design solutions for public and private sectors. McKim gave a glimpse into his own 500-person employee-owned engineering and surveying firm and showed how his in-house GIS team helps advance the company and benefit to clients by creating a digitally managed environment. Audience members learned about McKim & Creed's technical process, day-to-day operations, utility system that is digitally managed in real time, and other elements that have been key to the company's success.

Industry Panel on GIS Surveying and Licensing Issues

Two days before the summit began, the MAPPS et al. versus United States lawsuit made headlines. It affects surveyors and engineers throughout the country. The lawsuit alleged misapplications of federal contracting rules defined by the Brooks Act. An industry panel held during the summit pulled together surveying, GIS, and engineering professionals and explored this issue as well as other key developments in the industry. Joe Paiva, Ph.D., PS, PE, Point of Beginning magazine, moderated the panel, which included Curt Sumner, LS, American Congress on Surveying and Mapping (ACSM) executive director; Al Butler, GISP, AICP, ENP, certified mapping scientist; Chuck Pearson, PS, Clackamas County surveyor; and A. Richard Vannozzi, PLS, of the Massachusetts Association of Land Surveyors and Civil Engineers (MALSCE). Attendees interacted with the panel, asking about current and future issues.

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