Educational Initiatives will be Jointly Developed to Increase Students’ Appreciation of Geography
TORONTO and OTTAWA – November 14, 2012 – In celebration of GIS Day, Esri Canada and the Royal Canadian Geographical Society (RCGS) today announced a collaborative agreement that will advance the organizations’ common goal of promoting geographical literacy. Esri Canada provides the world’s leading geographic information system (GIS) technology, to which 50% of Canada’s publicly-funded educational institutions have access. The RCGS is a non-profit educational organization that publishes the Canadian Geographic and géographica magazines, and manages the Canadian Geographic Education program that works to emphasize geography in Canada’s schools. Through this collaboration, educators across Canada will gain access to a richer, broader collection of teaching resources to promote geographical thinking among their students.
“Canada has been at the forefront of geography and geospatial technology for many years,” notes Alex Miller, president, Esri Canada. “This partnership will help raise awareness for how these areas contribute to Canada’s development. We look forward to working with the RCGS to improve upon each other’s educational initiatives and foster a better appreciation for the value of geography to Canada’s continued success.”
“GIS provides a fun, interactive learning environment,” says John Geiger, president, RCGS. “Collaborating with technology leaders such as Esri Canada will allow us to deliver enhanced educational materials that integrate the best in mapping and GIS technology. This will provide the thousands of educators in our network with access to modern resources and extensive support to help their students explore Canada through geography. The collaboration will allow Esri Canada and the RCGS to exchange information, align educational initiatives and produce more substantial results."
Both organizations develop their own set of educational resources including lesson plans, tutorials and presentations used by educators from K-12 schools to colleges and universities. Previous materials from both organizations have reflected similar themes around the War of 1812, Canada’s climate change and other topics. Working together will allow the organizations to plan, produce and promote complementary materials that will enable educators to further enhance student learning of Canadian history, environment, politics, culture and society, using both Esri’s ArcGIS Online solution and the RCGS’ Canadian Atlas Online tool.
In addition to contributing to and promoting each other’s educational programs, the organizations will also extend access to professional development opportunities to educators in both networks. As well, they will jointly promote events that celebrate geography such as next year’s GIS Day and Geography Awareness Week.
About GIS Day
GIS Day provides an international forum for users of GIS technology to demonstrate real-world applications that are making a difference in our society. It is held in the third week of November each year. Thousands of organizations worldwide participate in this grassroots effort by hosting open houses, lectures, map galleries, games and other activities for people to learn about geography and the uses of GIS. For more information, visit: gisday.com.
About the Royal Canadian Geographical Society
The Royal Canadian Geographical Society was founded in 1929 with a mandate “to make Canada better known to Canadians and to the world”. This mandate is fulfilled mainly through publication of the Society’s magazines, Canadian Geographic in English and géographica in French, and through the Society’s geographic education programs, speaker series, research grants and expeditions programs. For more information, visit: rcgs.org.
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, Telvent, Cityworks – Azteca Systems and other technology partners. Headquartered in Toronto, the company serves over 10,000 customers from 16 regional offices across Canada and has been named as one of the Top 250 Canadian IT Companies and Top 25 IT Professional Services Providers in Canada by the Branham Group, as well as one of Computer Dealer News’ Top 100 IT Solution Providers in Canada. Information about Esri Canada can be found at esri.ca.