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Teamwork pays off for government and industry

When more private partners are integrated into the system, greater opportunities will emerge for using local resources in the recovery process. “Sometimes people assume that supplies for emergency repairs are not available locally,” says Araujo, “and the companies that really need the business are overlooked. When we have supply chain information in the system, people can quickly find out if what they need is available locally.”

Much of the success of the Miami-Dade County EOC lies in preparation. “We meet regularly throughout the year for discussions,” Vitro says. “We challenge business to look at what type of information they need and what they can share. They are prepared. We also hold practice drills to test our procedures” The county anticipates a wide variety of information needs as well. “We have identified retail locations that have backup generators, for example, and we pre-map those. After a disaster we verify which ones are operational, and provide that information. By getting businesses open as soon as possible, we can return to a sense of normalcy, which benefits the entire community

Private sector and government share GIS cases

GeoMeridian is a new online community in which developers and users of geographic information system (GIS) applications can share case studies. “GIS is becoming pervasive and spans all industries and business processes,” says Rob McDougald, chief community builder for GeoMeridian, “but no collaborative community has been built so far that captures knowledge about deployments to be reused by others.”

Because the government sector has used GIS extensively for a wide range of planning and operational applications over a number of years, the private sector can benefit from lessons learned. Increasingly, however, the private sector is also using GIS for applications such as business intelligence.

McDougald explains, “We want to blur the lines across industries, business processes and among organizations, which all too often are stovepiped, by having one open community and cross-industry knowledge repository through which people can share their GIS experiences.” In addition, the site will capture and promote the knowledge of GIS service providers. Those service providers can also contribute use cases to share their knowledge with relevant industry or business process areas..

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