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December 21st, 2021
NSGIC Releases Findings from 2021 Geospatial Maturity Assessment

The National States Geographic Information Council (NSGIC) has released its 2021 comprehensive Geospatial Maturity Assessment (GMA) report, providing NSGIC members and partners with a summary of geospatial initiatives, capabilities, and issues within and across state governments.

Launched in 2009 and conducted biennially to document geospatial development practices and uses, the GMA has continued to provide a snapshot of each state’s geospatial maturity. Inspired by the National Spatial Data Infrastructure theme grading undertaken by the Coalition of Geospatial Organizations (of which NSGIC is a founding member), an entirely new process was developed for the 2019 GMA. Nine-grade “report cards” were produced for individual state spatial data infrastructures and state geospatial coordination, in addition to overall theme and topical analysis.

This year’s data provide the first opportunity to compare grades through time. The 2021 report boasts 48 state responses, up from 41 in 2019. Many state’s grades have remained steady or increased from 2019. Coordination grades were largely the same, with both the addresses and transportation themes showing significant gains by states, likely driven by the increased focus on Next Generation 9-1-1. NSGIC’s advocacy efforts to bolster participation in the National Address Database (NAD) likely also contributed to the improvements seen in address data. The NAD program continues to grow, with participation by states and local governments increasing along with its acknowledged benefit to the private sector.

This deeper dive can assist states in setting goals, identifying peer states for collaboration, pinpointing areas requiring attention, and connecting states with opportunities and resources. It also provides an important tool for federal partners to identify areas for key coordination, cooperation, and collaboration, and for the private sector to build software and services that comprise the tools that make it all work.

The GMA report provides fundamental examples of where national coordination can be augmented by state-led coordination. NSGIC is uniquely qualified to coordinate with state government personnel who can adequately respond to questions regarding their state’s geospatial maturity as it relates to the framework layers. This critical baseline evaluation will support the implementation of the 2018 Geospatial Data Act so the federal government can sufficiently and effectively dedicate resources to strengthening the weak spots.

This report and corresponding resources can be found on the NSGIC.org website.