GIS Foundation for Non-Traditional Purposes

 In Blog

In a world where everything is smart, government budgeting doesn’t have to be the exception.

As jurisdictions strive to find new ways to better serve their constituents and keep building smarter communities, new technologies are also developed in order to facilitate processes for both local government and their constituents. Geographic Information Systems (GIS) is one of the most recent technologies, being adopted by jurisdictions for both traditional and even non-traditional purposes.

When we think of local government and financial activities, we usually think of excessive amounts of paperwork, time allocation and inefficient processes, all which can lead to mistakes and unnecessary expenses. Thanks to non-traditional usage of GIS, budgeting, planning and forecasting documents can be delivered in a timely manner, increasing accuracy and promoting economic development. What’s stopping other entities from taking advantage of this?

Non-Traditional Uses of GIS Data

1. Budgeting

A major part of government budgeting is based on land management, which encompasses activities such as infrastructure maintenance, licensing and permitting. By utilizing GIS for budgeting activities jurisdictions are able to take into consideration changes and maintenance of current infrastructure, building plans and examine real-time data that allows them to detect errors in a timely manner, making better decisions and better use of their resources.

For example, a city could allocate the budget for its Historic District by running a report to find out how much revenue was generated from tourism in that area over the past year. This is just one of many cases where GIS data could be used to better inform budget managers, resulting in more accurate financial forecasts.

2. Planning and Forecasting

Integrating spatial pattern data through GIS can positively impact profit estimates and analytics as the tools allow for increased collaboration, data sharing and community feedback. Data presented on a map is more easily communicated and provides greater context and insight than isolated data sets. By adopting innovative GIS, local government is able to provide transparency while at the same time relying on more accurate data that allows for jurisdictions to better plan and predict.

3. Economic Development

In addition to budgeting, planning and forecasting, organizations are taking advantage of GIS to create strong community identities that encourage people to come visit and live in their areas. Because GIS data can be leveraged to foster job growth and investment, these communities keep growing stronger and more attractive to people and businesses.

Learn how City of Johns Creek is leveraging real time traffic data available through Esri’s partnership with Waze to get people to stores faster & ultimately drive economic growth.

4. Foster Constituent Engagement

By implementing new tools that improve accuracy in budgeting, planning and forecasting, jurisdictions are able to get a 360-degree view of their community, leading to strengthened relationships with constituents and economic growth.

A recent study revealed that only “19% of all Americans could think of an example where the local government did a good job providing information to the public about data it collects.” Furthermore, an equal percentage of those surveyed could cite a specific example where their local government did not provide enough useful data and information to the public.

GIS managers dedicate time and effort to maintaining highly detailed databases that tie various information to a specific location on the map.  Shouldn’t communicating this data effectively be one of the biggest ways a jurisdiction can serve its employees and constituents? We think so.


Through our GIS Foundation, GovSense is able to take spatial data from your jurisdiction and leverage it toward non-traditional purposes such as planning, budgeting, economic development initiatives and more.

Click here to learn more about GIS technology and reasons to get on the map!

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