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National Land Parcel Data and Surveyors

Will Surveyors Heed the Call?

I recently finished reading National Land Parcel Data: A Vision for the Future, and I think it serves as a call to action for all surveyors. The book articulates the demand for a good national parcel database, including some excellent policy discussion on how to get started and how to make progress. Every surveyor who plans to work for the next 10 years should read this book.
National Land Parcel Data: A Vision for the Future is a reminder that, with new technology, surveyors have the ability to manage parcels in a GIS using survey methodologies, such as least squares adjustments, maintaining record measurements, and tying to survey control. Those willing to integrate their survey knowledge and know-how with GIS will have the capability to enter the GIS market by helping to improve the accuracy of a parcel network, consequently improving all the data in GIS.
What I hear from a lot of surveyors is that they understand the value of a national parcel database but they don’t necessarily see where they fit in with its development. I view this as a personal and professional challenge. For those of us surveyors who have integrated survey procedures and methodologies with GIS, we need to guide and convince our colleagues that adding these GIS services into their offerings is beneficial to both our profession and the GIS community. If surveyors don’t step up to the plate and provide this, someone else will.

Are surveyors prepared to engage in the opportunities that a national parcel database presents?

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