On April 9, 2019, the National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency (NGA) and Saint Louis University co-sponsored a new geospatial conference in St. Louis to bring together the government, academic and industry partners who are growing the Geospatial Ecosystem in the greater St. Louis region.
The event included:
- An industry career fair with recruiting representatives from the Intelligence Community, private companies, public utilities and consulting firms.
- A student mentoring lunch, where local leaders from industry, academia and government joined students to discuss local geospatial career opportunities, provide advice on the types of skill sets in demand and how we can continue to grow the Science, Technology, Engineering and Math (STEM) workforce.
- A poster session highlighting current research in which geospatial techniques play a critical role, to include remote sensing, spatial statistics, public health, urban studies, transportation and mobility, emergency response, infrastructure and environmental studies.
A critical part of a more holistic worldview is a better understanding of the impact of geography and location on its human inhabitants, and the impact of humans on the world. While this applies to all places in which people live, urban settings are consistently the most complex and hardest to understand. How have geospatial tools and expertise been able to improve our insights into the mobility of people in cities, and how can they inform our efforts to improve outcomes, opportunities and human dignity? And what are the ethical considerations of our growing geospatial capabilities, and how do we ensure that they benefit the people we serve?
Automation, artificial intelligence and augmentation are just a few areas where significant advances are impacting the GEOINT tradecraft. This conversation will be an opportunity to shed light on emerging technologies, trends and how industry, academia and Government can work together to pave the way forward.
We now produce more geospatial data in a day than millions of analysts could ingest and process within years. Computational tools, artificial intelligence and machine/human partnering are now obligatory capabilities for us to be able to tease knowledge and informed decisions out of mountains of data, and to gain insight on possible futures. Where have our new tools been able to make the greatest impact, and how does that inform where we apply them next? Have we gained a more holistic view of the world, and where have we improved our ability to predict future events?
The 21st Century Geospatial Ecosystem is the shared domain of many government agencies, corporations and academic institutions. Does the geospatial ecosystem currently lead or trail other technical disciplines in its inter-disciplinary and inter-organization collaboration? How do we leverage the industry base and academia to achieve the daunting goals described in the previous panels? What lessons can we draw from the innovation and entrepreneur communities to advance the geospatial ecosystem, meet the mission goals of our government partners and the needs of citizens here and abroad?
Conference Vision Statement
The 21st Century Geospatial Ecosystem will require the combined efforts of government, industry and academia to provide the enterprise data and services needed for informed decision-making, increase our knowledge of the world, and to improve quality of life and societal conditions
Research at SLU
Saint Louis University is one of only nine Catholic universities with a higher or highest research activity designation from the Carnegie Foundation. Among many other areas of study, SLU researchers are leading the charge to turn St. Louis into a national hub for geospatial research.