ODWC Geographic Information System (GIS) Agency Plan
Progress Report: August 2001-June 2005
Goal I: Develop and manage geo-referenced data
related to fish and wildlife resources in
Concept: The ODWC has accumulated vast amounts of natural resource data collected and archived in varying formats and locations throughout the state. While our agency is “data rich”, there are those that would consider us “information poor.” A logical strategy is needed to facilitate the transition between data and information to us, our constituents and to other agencies and organizations. Most of our collected data has some spatial component, thereby making GIS the obvious template for efficient data management throughout the agency.
1. Link existing and future databases collected by ODWC to the GIS.
-Integrate data into relational databases. (What are relational databases? They are data that can be linked by common attributes such as location, time of year, species, collectors, collection gear, etc. Someone looking at some piece of data can, therefore, see other data that have a common “relation.” An example of this type of database is the ODWC license file.)
-Hire or reassign personnel to integrate existing data
-Set standards for future data to be integrated
-Layers were accumulated for the data viewer and shared on the agency FTP server
-Standard language was added to the agency cooperative agreement used in funding university research projects, requiring contractors to provide ODWC all spatial data created or purchased, in electronic format
2. Establish long-term financial commitment for GIS
-Develop upgrade and maintenance budget for hardware, software and personnel
-Ensure support of administration by continually showing value of GIS
-Articulate vision of what GIS will be and can do and continue to communicate vision message to agency
-An inter-divisional Federal Aid Grant (FWT-1-P) was secured to continue funding the data viewer after the WCRP grant expired; financial support for the grant was provided by Wildlife, Fisheries, I&E and Natural Resources
-The data viewer was used to support species distribution layers needed for the Comprehensive Wildlife Conservation Strategy (funding from Natural Resources, T-2-P)
-The GIS lab was supported financially with contributions from I&E (work station), Natural Resources (software), Wildlife (plotter) and Fisheries (digitizer)
was used to assist with ODWC lawsuit regarding
-GIS is being used extensively in the quail management project identifying focal areas for conservation efforts on private land
-The data viewer was showcased at the Southeastern Association of Fish and Wildlife Agencies 2004 annual meeting and has been highlighted in Outdoor Oklahoma magazine and television show
-GIS committee represented the agency with an interactive station at “GIS Day at the Capitol” in 2004 and 2005
-Preparation of this annual progress report
Goal II: Promote and
facilitate to agency personnel the collection and analysis of spatial data
related to fish and wildlife resources in
Concept: As with any new technology, it is important to educate agency personnel in the potential value of GIS. While not all personnel have a use for GIS, all personnel who collect any kind of data have a potential interest in GIS. All data occurs somewhere, thereby giving it a spatial component. Whether it’s animal population data, arrest records, magazine subscription information, license data, manpower statistics or a wide myriad of other information, GIS can assist in managing and analyzing this type of information. The learning curve does not have to be steep nor do fellow employees have to be completely on their own in acquiring this knowledge. A logical progression of this type of knowledge acquisition, facilitated through this plan, would be to introduce the concept of GIS, explain the use and value of GIS, train interested personnel in GIS techniques and, finally, develop expertise through the use of GIS.
1. Introduce employees & administration to the concepts and capabilities of GIS.
-Technicians and above - Show-and-Tell sessions to show employees what can be done with GIS; hands-on trial with GPS/GIS
-Support staff – show how final product on our web page can make their jobs easier and help answer constituent questions
-Develop canned presentations for regional meetings, division meetings, district
meetings, staff meetings, Wildlife Resource Professional class, commission
-Use W-O-G (employee newsletter) as another source for GIS information dissemination
-Presentation on general GIS concepts, use in law enforcement and the digital atlas, to the Wildlife Professionals class (October 2002)
-Presentation on quail focus area research project to Commission (December 2004), Wildlife division (April 2005), and I&E division (April 2005)
-Four W-O-G articles featuring GIS (August 2001 – GIS use in the agency, committee plan insert; September 2002 – Responsive Management activities, including fishing license holder GIS project; October 2003 – data viewer and GIS Committee; August 2004 – data viewer evaluation, insert on usage instructions)
2. Acquire and provide employees access to GIS software and hardware.
-Determine the best way to distribute software and hardware – which employees at which
levels? Which locations?
grant funding to offer high-speed internet service installation and six months
of service to all six regional field offices, in an effort to improve access to
the data viewer; three offices used the funding (
space for and set up GIS Lab in the
-Set up the FTP site for sharing GIS data
-Wildlife division purchased two GPS/PDA units
3. Provide training & continuing education opportunities to employees on the use of GIS.
-Evaluate needs for training and continuing education throughout the Agency
-GIS Committee will recommend training opportunities to Human Resources Coordinator
-GIS Committee will facilitate additional continuing education opportunities
through interactions with outside GIS professionals
-ArcView Basic Training workshop, January 29-February 2, 2001 (5 attendees from Fisheries, 6 attendees from Wildlife, 2 attendees from Law Enforcement, 1 attendee from Natural Resources)
-ArcView Advanced Training workshop, June 11-13, 2001 (6 attendees from Wildlife, 7 attendees from Fisheries, 1 attendee from Natural Resources)
-Data Viewer Training workshop, March 5 & 6, 2003 (63 employees attended one of four 2-hour sessions)
-Transitioning from ArcView 3.x to ArcGIS 8.x workshop, May 22-23, 2003 (4 employees attended)
-WHIP Technicians and Private Lands Biologists received two days of ArcView training in November 2003
-Kurt Kuklinski attended the Organization of Fish and Wildlife Information Managers conference in 2003, with special conference emphasis on GIS.
-Greg Summers and Kurt Kuklinski attended a Server Administration training course in February-March 2004
Concept: Just as the ODWC depends on other local, state and federal agencies for information under their domain, so do they depend on the ODWC as a source for accurate and timely data on our state’s fish and wildlife resources. Non-governmental entities such as universities, NGO’s and our customers also depend on us for information. It is our innate responsibility to efficiently share our findings with those not only in our own agency but also with those outside who can benefit from our data. However, some of the data that we maintain is from ecologically sensitive areas whose locations must be guarded under strict guidelines.
1. Develop ODWC GIS resource inventory as a shared-use archive for all natural resource
managers, state and federal agencies and the public.
-Develop and implement an Internet Mapping Server (IMS). (An IMS is an economical and efficient method to “serve” data and information to interested parties through the internet. It involves specialized, web-based software that provides a user-friendly platform for spatial data acquisition. Its capabilities can range from the simple, providing of maps of certain areas, to the more complex offering of Arc View shape files.)
-Determine priorities and schedule for when data get served (which data get served first)
-Track access – who is using what and how often? Helps set priorities for what to
serve and proves value of service
-Periodically evaluate IMS for improvement
-A consultant was used to assess the status of GIS within the agency, make recommendations, and design the basic IMS (2001-2003).
-The ODWC Digital Atlas (data viewer) went live to the public in the fall of 2003, using a contract for third-party hosting.
-The IMS contractor began tracking usage of the WMA Digital Atlas in December 2003. The number of individual logons ranged from approximately 150 to 3,750 per week (in the weeks of 1/1/2005 and 11/08/2004, respectively). The number of map images created for users ranged from approximately 150 to 120,100 per week (in the weeks of 1/1/2005 and 1/15/2005, respectively).
-A significant portion of every GIS Committee monthly meeting during 2003, 2004 and early 2005 was devoted to discussing the IMS contract and changes needed on the Digital Atlas.
-Significant changes to the site were made during 2004, including the addition of over 100 species distribution layers for use in the Comprehensive Wildlife Conservation Strategy planning.
-Plans are underway to host the IMS in-house by 2006.
-The GIS FTP server was established in September 2003, to share all layers displayed on the IMS.
-The FTP server averages approximately 150 logons per month and serves nearly 34 GB of data to GIS users.
data have been shared through the FTP server with multiple outside parties,
including the Environmental Protection Agency, Oklahoma Department of
Transportation, Cherokee Nation,
Develop and maintain a catalog of spatial
-Determine what we will serve (our data, that of others) and what data we will just provide
direction to (data road map)
-GIS committee look at needs assessment, prioritize data layer needs, find existing data, construct catalog and provide on-line access
-FTP server shares data from the IMS
-The GIS website provides a link to the FTP server
3. Set standards and specifications for GIS data collected by ODWC. In order for a database to be usable by parties other than those that created it, certain specifications and standards must be maintained. Many of these are set forth as recommendations of the Oklahoma GIS Council.
-Use FGDC (Federal Geographic Data Committee) standards
-Decide scale, projection, quality, etc.
-Protocol for updates/edits to data
-GIS committee will consult with consultant
-Working with the IMS contractor, protocol for file type and standardized metadata has been established for layers posted to the IMS
-ODWC was appointed to the state GIS Council in August 2001
-An ODWC representative attends an average of 11 GIS Council meetings each year
4. Administer agency GIS plan.
-GIS committee will continue to work with agency’s GIS specialist (to be assigned)
-Hire or reassign personnel to administer plan
Goal IV: Annually assess the development, needs and use of spatial analysis systems in regard to agency goals.
Concept: Most planning of this type is dynamic, i.e. it is, and should be, constantly changing. This
allows the plan to continually address new needs and abandon those items no longer pertinent. To this end the GIS Committee and the GIS Plan should continue providing direction to the ODWC. At the same time some measure of success is needed to evaluate whether the plan is providing that which it intended.
1. Maintain ODWC GIS Committee on an annual basis.
-Maintain informal and open committee structure
-Annually elect committee chair
-Put out call-for-participation to recruit interested employees
-Publicize meetings at South Central Arc Users Group, GIS Council, GIS Day at the Capitol, intra-agency communications, etc.
-Annually review committee goals and operations
-Mike Sams was re-elected as the GIS Committee chair in June 2005
-Law Enforcement was asked to solicit an appropriate member from the division to serve on the GIS Committee
membership has changed to reflect changes in employee interest (Randy Hyler replaced James Vincent, James Vincent had previously
replaced Paul Balkenbush,
-A photo of the 2003 ODWC booth at GIS Day at the Capitol appeared in the Wildlife-O-Gram
2. Annually review ODWC GIS plan by GIS Committee.
-Set month for annual meeting to review plan and make revisions
-Distribute plan in monthly packet with announcement about website with links to
-First version of GIS Plan was distributed to all employees in the Wildlife-O-Gram (August 2001)
-The plan was reviewed and revised in June 2005
-Plans are underway to share the revised plan and/or the progress report to employees
-Set measures of success for GIS program
-Count hits on IMS website
-IMS site visitor survey
-Examine GIS budget
-Count new databases either located or created
-Count hardware/software purchases/upgrades
-Count proportion of employees trained
-Monitor IMS download tracking feature
-Survey GPS/GIS users about impact of program
-Monitor changes in population parameters that result from GIS applications where possible (e.g., deer regulation changes implemented in another area b/c GIS data allowed prediction of desired results – did it happen? Prairie dogs, other rare spp. where results can directly be seen, etc.)
-The 2003 and 2004-season Game Harvest Surveys were used to assess hunter use and opinion of the Digital Atlas. Few had used the atlas, but those that did found it relatively easy to use. The majority of hunters interested in WMA maps preferred the continued distribution of free maps through the IMS.
-IMS usage was tracked (see progress reported under Goal III, Objective 1)