About GIS Day

GIS Day is a global event that enables GIS (geographic information systems) users to showcase the real-world applications of GIS to schools, businesses, and the general public. GIS, a computer-based tool used to map and analyze features and events, combines the power of a database with the visualization capabilities offered by maps. Hundreds of thousands of people in the world use GIS to solve problems in areas such as environmental protection, pollution, health care, land use, asset deployment and routing, natural resources, conservation, business efficiency, education and social inequities.

The first GIS Day occurred in 1998. It is held in the third week of November each year, on the Wednesday during Geography Awareness Week, which is sponsored by the National Geographic Society and was established in 1987. In 2010, GIS Day events were held in 45 U.S. states and 59 countries.

The University of Richmond began celebrating GIS Day in 2007. UR has established a tradition in which students enrolled in the GEOG 260 class design the annual GIS Day T-shirt. Speakers are invited annually to address the university community on a topic pertaining to GIS and students host a GIS-inspired cake decorating contest.