Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada Wins Award of Excellence in GIS

Department improves enterprise framework for developing innovative, federally-compliant Web mapping applications using GIS technology  

OTTAWA, Esri Canada User Conference – October 22, 2013 Esri Canada has given its 2013 Award of Excellence to Agriculture and Agri-Food Canada (AAFC) for outstanding achievement in the application of Geographic Information System (GIS) technology. This award recognizes AAFC’s enhancement of an enterprise mapping framework using GIS tools. The framework includes a template, in English and French formats, that enables AAFC to quickly and economically create federally-compliant Web mapping applications. 

AAFC developed a number of projects that have leveraged this framework. They include the AAFC User Mapping Application Platform ( UMAP), a self-serve mapping application for departmental staff, and three innovative mapping applications available to Canadians over the Internet: 

  • Geospatial Platform Viewer – allows data and Web mapping services to be integrated with ready-to-use basemaps. It speeds up and reduces the cost of building custom applications that meet the Government of Canada’s Web Content Accessibility Guidelines.  
  • AgroClimate Impact Reporter – displays dataset of ongoing weather impacts on agriculture submitted by volunteer reporters. The application allows users to make data queries and overlay their own datasets with existing layers of information. 

To help reduce development and maintenance costs and deploy new Web applications more quickly, AAFC invested in commercial off-the-shelf software. The department had been using Esri’s ArcGIS for Server and Desktop technologies for day-to-day mapping tasks. With increasing demands for geographic data, AAFC added ArcGIS Online, Esri’s cloud mapping platform, to develop UMAP. 

“Adopting the latest Esri technology puts AAFC at the forefront of GIS innovation,” notes Alex Miller, president, Esri Canada. “Their Geospatial Platform Viewer, for example, leverages the power of cloud GIS to deliver accessible, bilingual content. It’s a valuable template that other government agencies can use as they work towards federal Web compliance.” 

Esri Canada presents Awards of Excellence annually to organizations across the country to showcase their successful use of GIS in solving problems and improving decision-making. Nominations are submitted by Esri Canada staff and are reviewed by an internal selection committee on the basis of impact, focus, timeliness and uniqueness. 

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About Esri Canada

Founded in 1984, Esri Canada provides enterprise Geographic Information System (GIS) solutions that empower businesses, governments and educational institutions to make timely, informed and mission-critical decisions by leveraging the power of geography. The company distributes the world's leading GIS software from Esri, Schneider Electric, Cityworks – Azteca Systems, Inc. and other technology partners. Headquartered in Toronto, the company serves over 10,000 customers from 16 regional offices across Canada. Esri Canada has joined the elite rank of Canada’s Best Managed companies and has been named to the Branham300.  Information about the company can be found at esri.ca.  

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