Esri Canada Selects UW for Centres of Excellence program

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Esri Canada has selected University of Waterloo as a Centre of Excellence (ECCE) in Geographic Information Systems (GIS)

esri canada logo

Waterloo’s Faculty of Environment has long been a global leader in GIS with the help of Esri’s software suite centred on the ArcGIS desktop, server and web platforms.

Researchers including Rob Feick, Peter Johnson, Peter Deadman, Derek Robinson and Su-Yin Tan help train the next generation of GIS experts (roughly 400-450 students annually in seven undergraduate courses) as well as six graduate courses in advanced cartography, spatial analysis, spatial database design, GIS application development and beyond.

The Faculty’s long-standing relationship with Esri Canada stretches back to the mid-1980s, and this new status as an ECCE will help foster collaboration and innovation in GIS teaching and research among the member institutions and the broader Canadian higher education community.

“This includes promoting communication related to GIS education and employment opportunities and building a body of knowledge related to the development of GIS software applications with a special emphasis on mobile and web-based environments,” says Feick, an associate professor in Environment’s School of Planning. “It will also foster collaboration in external funding opportunities.”

Currently the University of Waterloo is one of the six initial members of the Esri Canada Centres of Excellence program. Other centres include Univ. of Victoria, Simon Fraser, McMaster, McGill and a joint centre comprised of Dalhousie and Nova Scotia Community College, Centre of Geographic Sciences (COGS).

To find out more about the exciting GIS research and teaching taking place at Waterloo, be sure to look out for events around GIS Day, on Nov. 19, including an app development challenge sometime this winter term.

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