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Environmental Management

, Volume 49, Issue 4, pp 816–832 | Cite as

An Integrated WebGIS Framework for Volunteered Geographic Information and Social Media in Soil and Water Conservation

  • Joshua D. Werts
  • Elena A. Mikhailova
  • Christopher J. Post
  • Julia L. Sharp
Article

Abstract

Volunteered geographic information and social networking in a WebGIS has the potential to increase public participation in soil and water conservation, promote environmental awareness and change, and provide timely data that may be otherwise unavailable to policymakers in soil and water conservation management. The objectives of this study were: (1) to develop a framework for combining current technologies, computing advances, data sources, and social media; and (2) develop and test an online web mapping interface. The mapping interface integrates Microsoft Silverlight, Bing Maps, ArcGIS Server, Google Picasa Web Albums Data API, RSS, Google Analytics, and Facebook to create a rich user experience. The website allows the public to upload photos and attributes of their own subdivisions or sites they have identified and explore other submissions. The website was made available to the public in early February 2011 at http://www.AbandonedDevelopments.com and evaluated for its potential long-term success in a pilot study.

Keywords

Construction Internet Land use Silverlight Public participation GIS (PPGIS) Volunteered geographic information (VGI) 

Abbreviations

API

Application programming interface

BMP

Best management practice

ESRI

Environmental systems research institute

GIS

Geographic information system

GPS

Global positioning system

HTML

Hypertext markup language

IIS

Internet information services

RSS

Really simple syndication

VGI

Volunteered geographic information

Notes

Acknowledgments

Authors wish to thank and acknowledge the Greenville, Pickens, and Spartanburg county GIS departments for providing aerial photos and GIS data. Financial support for this project was provided by South Carolina Water Resources Center and the Clemson University Public Service and Agriculture Next Generation Graduate Fellowship (PSA-NGGF). Technical Contribution no. 5902 of the Clemson University Experiment Station.

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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2012

Authors and Affiliations

  • Joshua D. Werts
    • 1
  • Elena A. Mikhailova
    • 1
  • Christopher J. Post
    • 1
  • Julia L. Sharp
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Forestry and Natural ResourcesClemson UniversityClemsonUSA
  2. 2.Department of Mathematical SciencesClemson UniversityClemsonUSA

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