Christian Carlson is currently responsible for leading Esri's state, local, and provincial government sector. For over two decades at Esri, he has leveraged his knowledge of GIS, geography, and data to transform the way governments, commercial organizations, and utilities do business. His work connecting technology innovations to business requirements has been a catalyst in establishing what is now a pervasive use of GIS in government. Today, he is actively involved in applying GIS capabilities to global initiatives including smart cities, resiliency, citizen engagement, and high-performance government.
Christian has worked in virtually all GIS domains and supported implementations covering multiple major innovation cycles, from the on-premises client server to today's distributed cloud environment. Christian has capitalized on the geographic nature of government operations and decision-making to evolve the role of GIS from a niche discipline to a standard IT capability integrated across organizational workflows—a true decision support system for organization efficiency.
Through this work, Christian has developed insights into how the convergence of rapid technology advancement and information acquisition is changing the workflows, organizational capabilities, service delivery, and accountability of knowledge works for their constituents.
Prior to Esri, he worked for the State of North Carolina Division of Coastal Management as a GIS analyst. He collected and analyzed data supporting multiple program initiatives including coastal wetlands delineation and cumulative impacts of pollution and runoff in North Carolina's coastal waterways.
Christian earned a master of business administration degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and two bachelor of arts degrees (in geography and economics) from the University of Colorado at Boulder. His graduate studies focused on corporate finance, entrepreneurship, organizational leadership, change management, and innovation.
He currently serves on the board of directors for Austin City UP, the largest smart city consortium of companies, organizations, and individuals in the United States. The consortium collaborates on activities that advance Austin, Texas, through digital technologies, data collection, analytics, and modeling.
Outside of work, Christian's passions include climbing mountains, running on trails, riding bikes, and standing in rivers.