Educating 21st Century Geospatial Technology Industry Workers with Open Source Software

Phillip Davis


The global geospatial technology industry, in a study by UK-based Oxera commissioned by Google in January 2013, has been estimated at $150 USD billion to $270 USD billion per year ($110 billion euro to $199 billion euro). In a similar US-focused study, also commissioned by Google in 2013, the Boston Consulting Group (BCG) found the geospatial services industry employs approximately 500,000 people and generates around $75 (USD) billion in annual revenue ($55 billion euro). By any measure, the geospatial
industry is large one, in both the US and globally.
With this explosive growth, combined with the current generation of geospatial workers nearing retirement age in the next decade, it has become imperative to increase the number of well-qualified graduates from higher education programs, knowledgeable in the latest geospatial technology. This report describes one effort in the US to increase both the quantity and quality of these workers through the use of a new innovative geospatial curriculum built around open source software.


Curriculum, open source, FOSS4G, education, university, college, QGIS, GTCM, DACUM, teaching, learning, ESRI, Google, FOSS

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