GIS in Economic Development


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Course Info:

Approximately 90

Software Included:
ArcGIS Desktop - ArcView

Lauderdale County Demo Data
Student Manual
Lesson Plans
PowerPoint Presentation
PowerPoint Notes

Customized Local Data Set

Teacher Training:
3 Days

The use of Geographic Information Systems (GIS) empowers economic developers to view and analyze pertinent information critical to the growth and development of a community or region. Many factors contribute to the economic and overall well being of a community. Data that tracks such regional dynamics provide indicators of the level of quality of life and economic viability of a region.

GIS enables the visualization and study of these community factors through the use of maps and spatial analysis techniques. Plotting maps that show where a specific set of geographic conditions exist empowers economic developers to hone in on specific sites within a community that embody all of the right criteria for specific types of development. By studying the various geographic elements in a community through the use of maps and spatial analysis, an economic developer may harness a new understanding of the economic dynamics of the community. Exploring opportunities for new investments and strengthening existing business and industry are tasks that are enhanced through the study of geospatial information.

This demonstration project uses geospatial data from Lauderdale County, Mississippi and addresses the mission of the East Mississippi Development Corporation to empower a diverse leadership culture to achieve economic wealth through excellence in education, new investment, and the nurturing of existing business industry. Your students will focus on three main processes:

  • Development of Regional Indicators
  • Site Suitability
  • Site Selection
  • Table of Contents

    Lesson Sample

    System Requirements

    Based on latest version of ArcGIS Desktop supported in the most recent course update

    ArcGIS Desktop 10 - ArcView:

  • Operating System: Windows XP Professional, Windows Vista, Windows 7
  • Processor: 2.2 GHZ recommended or equivalent (Intel Pentium 4, Intel Core Duo, or Xeon Processors; SSE2)
  • RAM: 2GB Minimum
  • Disk Space: 3.2 GB
  • Video Adapter: OpenGL-compatible card - OpenGL 1.3 compliant (64 MB memory)/NVIDIA, ATI and INTEL chipsets
  • Additional Computer Requirements:

  • Networked lab of computers with a 1:1 ratio of students to computers
  • Disk Space: Additional 1 GB for courseware data; 500 MB per student for student generated data
  • Permissions: Save location for students with Read/Write Access - stored locally or on server.
  • For Presentations: Means of displaying PowerPoint presentations (LCD projector, large monitor, etc.)
  • Printer: Suggested; suitable for printing 8.5 x 11 in. map layouts
  • Internet Connection: For research and downloading data