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Indian human, institutional and organisations capacity building in geoinformatics

Author: 
Kamal Kumar, M.
Subject Area: 
Social Sciences and Humanities
Abstract: 

Capacity building is often referred to mean training to advance individual knowledge, in some cases introducing new infrastructure, or quite often exposing staff to better environment through study to improve resource management skills and capabilities. Geoinformatics broadly includes mapping and surveying techniques, remote sensing, photogrammetry, cartography, Global Positioning Systems (GPS) and Geographical Information Systems (GIS). With its unique ability for acquisition, integration and analysis of geographically referenced spatial information, this technology has in recent times been recognized as an effective tool for planning, management and decision making locally and globally. Well articulated policy mechanisms, Government support and the ever increasing domestic demand would go a long way in popularizing geospatial technology in India and bring it into the mainstream an aid for effective governance and developmental planning. The development of geoinformatics over the last two decades and with that the growing awareness of the role of Geospatial data infrastructure (GDI) in civil society imply that professionals of different types are required by organisations involved in the production, dissemination and use of Geospatial information (GI) and with policy development with respect to the roles of the public and private sector in this field. This is a global development, but the different regions and individual countries of the world have to formulate their own ideas and concepts how to deal with this issue, because Geospatial data infrastructure (GDI)’s should be adapted to regional and local context. Advances in space and information technologies have positively impacted on critical capacity globally through availability of geospatial information technology tools. To be fully utilized however, the space and information technologies must be understood by skilled manpower in India to tackle the major challenges in spatial data management. In India, the majority of the professionals and technicians in different organisations involved in geospatial information activities have not been making full use of data and tools to manage and alleviate the consequences in planning and management of natural resources for sustainable development. due to low proficiency in the space technologies. Today there is increasing demands of well-trained staff at all levels, to face the main challenges of spatial data management and urgent situation response. Therefore, it became necessary to provide training and capacity-building in the use of space and information technologies for different levels of professionals involved in spatial data management. This is for the benefit of communities affected by different kinds spatial problems . It will involve exchanges and communication between experts and development partners on one hand, and experts and local communities who must also understand and value the use of space technologies to solve their problems, on the other hand. This paper examines the constraints for manpower development in space- and geo-spatial information technology to tackle numerous situations occurring in India.(flood, drought, windstorm, wild fire, famine, epidemic, etc...). This study also investigated the challenges and successes of geospatial technologies capacity-building programme carried out , designed for technical and managerial staff working on projects. Assessment of the training programme revealed that basic mapping skills could be successfully transferred to the project staff; giving them the capacity to use geospatial technology to better plan, design, implement and evaluate their projects. The role of capacity-building by training institutions like the Indian Institute of Space Science and Technology (IIST), Indian Institute of Remote Sensing (IIRS), National Natural Resources Management System (NNRMS) in improving the situation and facing the main challenges is emphasized and case studies presented.

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