Date:March 25, 2014

Archiving Digital Maps

My research examines the historical challenges faced by a local GIS community and its advocacy for improved access and availability of geographic data on local and national levels. I was primarily interested in the data access issues that led a group of geographers in New York City to develop a centralized data repository and basemap, and examined concurrent practices at the national level. I intend to use the results of this research to inform the development of a born-digital archive of 9/11 artifacts in cooperation with members of GISMO, a New York City based GIS advocacy group.

Methods: I used qualitative research methods to evaluate the current landscape of archival practices for digital, geospatial content. I examined monographs, scholarly journal articles, conference proceedings, news articles, and website materials.

This project presents a thorough evaluation of archival practices and challenges for digital, geospatial material. My research includes a definition of geographic data, an overview of geographic data classification, geolibraries and geospatial preservation models, and challenges for the management, sharing and maintenance of geospatial collections. I concluded with actionable ideas for librarians who are developing a geographic collection.

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