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January 17th, 2020
Esri Announces StoryMapper of the Year Contest Winners

REDLANDS, Calif.—Esri, the global leader in location intelligence, today announced the winners of the 2019 ArcGIS StoryMapper of the Year Contest, in which contestants were invited to submit their best and most innovative story maps for a chance to win various prizes, including a cash donation for their chosen cause, school, or nonprofit organization.

Guest judges for the 2019 contest included Alex Tait, geographer at National Geographic; Michael Goodchild, emeritus professor of geography at University of California, Santa Barbara; and James Fallows, national correspondent for The Atlantic and former presidential speechwriter. The winners were announced January 15, 2020, on Esri’s website.

“The quality of the maps recognized in this competition is obvious and impressive,” said Fallows. “But even more encouraging is the range of uses that individuals and groups around the world have found for story maps. Bringing history to life; highlighting current and emerging problems; protecting endangered resources; empowering communities for a better future—in these and many other ways, the mapmakers we are honoring today all illustrate mapping-technology’s power and benefits.”

The first place winner is Stanford University, which will use the $5,000 grand prize to equip its map library space with enhanced physical and digital exhibit methods, a 3D printer, and materials to communicate the endless possibilities created by maps for learning and exploration.

Runners-up include the Open Spaces Institute, Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF), Clean Air Carolina’s Citizen Science program, and the University of Delaware. These runners-up will each receive $1,000 toward the cause, school, or nonprofit of their choice. In addition to cash prizes to the cause of their choice, the grand prize winner and runners-up will also each receive an Esri Technical Certification exam voucher, valued at $250, and one ArcGIS for Personal Use license, valued at $100.

“We started this competition in 2014 to showcase the innovative work and creativity of the GIS community,” said Jack Dangermond, Esri founder and president. “I was so impressed by the diversity, dedication, and passion of this year’s contestants, who are using the latest digital storytelling techniques and technologies to make a difference where it matters most.”

Over 400 geographers, GIS specialists, and users competed in this event, with entries focused on conservation, sustainability, government, education, and more. Entries were judged on the map’s effectiveness in making the subject understandable and engaging, the experience that the map provided the viewer, and the overall design and impact of the map. Each contestant submitted not only an ArcGIS StoryMaps story but also a description of how they would use a $5,000 donation from Esri to make a positive impact on their communities.

To learn more about the 2019 ArcGIS StoryMapper of the Year entries and winners, visit

About ESRI

Esri, the global market leader in geographic information system (GIS) software, location intelligence, and mapping, offers the most powerful geospatial cloud available, to help customers unlock the full potential of data to improve operational and business results. Founded in 1969, Esri software is deployed in more than 350,000 organizations including 90 of the Fortune 100 companies, all 50 state governments, more than half of all counties (large and small), and 87 of the Forbes Top 100 Colleges in the U.S., as well as all 15 Executive Departments of the U.S. Government and dozens of independent agencies. With its pioneering commitment to geospatial information technology, Esri engineers the most advanced solutions for digital transformation, the Internet of Things (IoT), and advanced analytics. Visit us at

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