This is a special White Paper Series entitled "The Geospatial
Dimensions of Critical Infrastructure and Emergency Response." It
is intended to provide geospatial practitioners with a
summary of critical infrastructure interdependencies, reasons
why understanding these relationships is vital to
effective emergency response, and the important role geospatial
technology, data and knowledge can play in addressing our
GITA is extremely concerned about the current status of the infrastructure in North America. The Association is dedicated to developing and promoting effective ways to begin to address this increasingly serious problem, by leveraging what it feels are ideal tools: geospatial information and technology.
GITA's membership is concerned with infrastructure, i.e. "all fundamental services, activities, and operations that sustain our communities and way of life” in five fundamental critical infrastructure sectors: energy-electrical, energy, gas/oil, water, communications, and transportation. GITA's geospatial focus is an all encompassing one. GITA understands that "everything is somewhere" and views geospatial information and technology as an enabler of increased understanding of critical infrastructure, its interdependencies, and its relationship to building and maintaining economically, socially and environmentally livable and sustainable communities across the nation.
In this context, GITA believes that geospatial information and technology are becoming an information infrastructure and as such are part of the growing cyber infrastructure that supports and is intertwined with all other elements of critical infrastructure. GITA strives to be the leading information resource and community for anyone who has a vested interest in the use of geospatial information.
As part of being a thought leader for geospatial and to contribute significantly to helping address infrastructure challenges, GITA is endeavoring to increase awareness and promote policies and practices to enhance the role of geospatial technology, information, and infrastructures in sustaining our invaluable infrastructure assets. In order to better understand and communicate how a failure or an event in one infrastructure sector may affect assets in other sectors, GITA undertook an effort to publish a series of white papers to define and discuss the "interdependencies of infrastructure.” It is intended to provide geospatial practitioners with a summary of critical infrastructure interdependencies, reasons why understanding these relationships is vital to effective critical infrastructure management, operations, and emergency response, and the important role geospatial technology can play in addressing our infrastructure-related challenges.