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December 21st, 2014
GITA Adopts Diversity and Inclusion Policy

As adopted, the policy is intended to highlight two broad themes. First, diversity has many community wide benefits. Diversity expands the perspective of any group, and thus enhances problem solving, which is particularly important in geospatial professions. Like many Science, Technology, Engineering, and Mathematics (STEM) fields, geospatial professions require an on-going stream of talent, and therefore it is imperative to encourage as many people as possible to pursue careers in GIS. Second, in order to grow as an association, it is important to embrace the unique backgrounds, perspectives, beliefs and experience of people and create an environment where people can bring their full selves and be valued for what makes them unique.

Diversity and inclusion are the keys to achieving this goal.

In recognition of these realities, the GITA Board voted to take a leadership position on this issue by formally acknowledging that diversity requires an ongoing and active commitment to the inclusion of a wide range of people. The GITA Board noted that the geospatial industry is significantly under-represented by women and minorities, and felt strongly that active efforts are needed to achieve a more equitable workforce in both STEM and allied disciplines. Crafting of the policy is seen an important first step in GITA’s conscious decision to begin efforts to help diversify the geospatial workforce.

GITA’s Policy Statement on Diversity and Inclusion is as follows:

The Geospatial Information and Technology Association (GITA) supports and encourages the equitable opportunity for participation of all persons in the Geospatial field, including engineers, planners, surveyors, technologists, software developers, educators, operations and maintenance specialists and all others interested in geospatial technology without regard to race, ethnicity, nationality, religion, age, gender identification, accessibility, educational or financial differences. GITA will promote and implement programs designed to enhance opportunities to participate in the development of geospatial technologies worldwide for everyone.

Additional information about the effort can be found on GITA’s website under “About GITA – Diversity”. Individuals interested in participating in GITA’s work group on Diversity and Inclusion should contact Elizabeth Bialek, P.E. at ezbialek@gita.org.

About GITA – www.gita.org

The Geospatial Information & Technology Association (GITA) is the professional association and leading
advocate for anyone using geospatial technology to help operate, maintain, and protect the infrastructure, which
includes organizations such as utilities, telecommunication companies, and the public sector. Through industry
leading conferences—along with research initiatives, chapters, membership, and other programs—GITA
provides education and professional best practices to geospatial practitioners focused upon critical infrastructure
assets. For more information on GITA contact Steve Swazee at communications@gita.org.