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GIS in risk management - an overview E-mail
In my PhD thesis I suggest and give exemples of how to use geographical information systems (GIS) in risk management.
Today, I will make an overview of the GIS concept, promising that I will be back with this subject.
It seems that the literature does not offer a standard definition for the Geographical Information System (GIS) concept. The Handling Geographic Information Report (which is a standard creation body) describes GIS as an information system where data has a geographical dimension [Hawkins, 1994, p.4].
What we can understand from this idea is that data can be bound to a very specific point from a geographical map.
An interesting way to define this concept is offered by Meeks and Dasgupta [Meeks and Dasgupta, 2005, p.179]. In their opinion GIS is a system that include components as hardware, software, data, connectivity, procedures and operators.
GIS = f {Hardware, Software, Date, Connectivity, Procedures, Operators} where,
- Hardware – all the hardware components of a system;
- Software – operation systems, applications and tools;
- Date – all kind of data;
- Connectivity – component that connect GIS with data sources and other support application;
- Procedures – processes, algorithms, methods necessary in order to use a GIS;
- Operators – annalists, researchers, users of GIS.
GIS are systems used for storage, extraction, mapping and analyzing geographical data. GIS are metaphorical described as the 21st Century’s datasheets. These systems became extremely important in many fields: starting with geography and geology, continuing with business, healthcare or criminology and finishing (but not ending) with governing (GIS is an important component of a e-Government plan).
The main advantage of a GIS system is that all the complex data that have been displayed in tables, datasheets, balance scorecard and other technical reports until now, are displayed in graphical manner very easy to understand and interpret. If we think just for a moment as a risk manager we understand that such a system would help me to simulate and understand whether conditions in order to better identify nature risks for a project.




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