GIS Is a Common Language

Measurement and evidence have been the domain of the Land Surveyor since its earliest days. Land surveyors establish or recover on the ground physical evidence of title and ownership. Parcel mapping is a compilation and aggregation that serves as an index to other information.

GIS serves both efforts. It can be used to support field collection of measurements, reduce and compile measurements, and apply analysis such as least squares analysis to estimate the quality of measurements and control. GIS is also vital to parcel mapping. It provides the workflows and tools to extract from and link to record information and compile and aggregate record information into a single view.

GIS is the common ground. It is automated geography that provides a common language to bridge the gap between parcel-by-parcel evidence-based land surveys and jurisdiction-wide parcel mapping. Rather than carving out separate roles or setting up barriers to use, land surveyors and parcel mappers need to leverage the common language of geography, as expressed in GIS, to improve the quality and efficiency of both.

We will explore some ways land surveyors and parcel mappers, as well as other allied professions, can increase cooperation to achieve more efficiency and greater accuracy.