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Tag: Federal

Esri FedGIS 2020

The Blue Raster team recently attended the 2020 Esri Federal GIS (FedGIS) Conference in Washington, DC. The conference brought together over 5,000 GIS professionals from across government agencies to share their knowledge and explore new ways of leveraging GIS in their work. Over the course of three days, Esri staff and industry specialists held presentations and workshops on best practices for location intelligence and their experiences working within the geospatial data community.

Blue Raster's work with the Alcohol and Tobacco Tax and Trade Bureau (TTB) was highlighted in the FedGIS plenary presentation by Jack Dangermond, and our project with the Department of Education was featured on a Map Gallery wall.

Esri FedGIS Preconference Events

Esri FedGIS

Esri FedGIS

On Monday, Blue Raster had the opportunity to participate in two Esri FedGIS preconference programs:

  • The Partner Program brought together startups, emerging businesses, the Esri Partner Network, and alliance partners to understand how to effectively work with Esri software in partnership with Esri to drive success.
  • The University Student Program included sessions, workshops, and a career fair event for students in undergraduate and graduate degree programs with interest and experience in GIS and other related fields. Our team co-presented with the Esri StoryMaps team on Storytelling using GIShelping to showcase our work with the new StoryMaps for ArcGIS and present the features that StoryMaps has to offer.
    • New this year was the Esri FedGIS Career Fair for the University students. Blue Raster hosted a table for the career fair portion of the student program, where we had the chance to meet some great students on the cutting edge of GIS technologies, and discuss some of our career opportunities.

Presentations

Our team also had the opportunity to see some of the wonderful work that others are doing in the geospatial community, as well as present some of our own work.

Blue Raster team member Christina Nordling discussed How Agencies are using StoryMaps to Share Information.

Shannon Lindsay and Phil Satlof shared their work with Integrating Microsoft Power BI and ArcGIS for the TRACE Program.

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Field Report: Supporting TRACE in Eswatini, Rwanda, and Ethiopia

Implementing a business intelligence platform requires users to think critically about the business questions they want their data to inform and the underlying data systems that will feed their data visualizations. Blue Raster has had the unique opportunity to work with ICAP (of the Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health), the University of California San Francisco, the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), and Ministries of Health around the globe to put their data to work to end the HIV epidemic.

Ending the HIV Epidemic with Data

There has been significant progress over the past decade in the global health response to HIV, and the end of the HIV pandemic is within reach. Global health programs and Ministries of Health need high-quality, real time data in order to target the right interventions to the right populations at the right time, and we’re using Power BI and Esri ArcGIS Online to achieve these goals.

TRACE Initiative

Blue Raster and ICAP are working on the TRACE initiative (Tracking with Recency Assays to Control the Epidemic), establishing HIV recent infection surveillance systems in routine HIV services to detect, characterize, monitor, and intervene on recent infection among newly diagnosed people living with HIV (PLHIV). We are supporting the implementation of Power BI and ArcGIS to provide real-time data about recent infections and to deliver this data quickly to decision makers.

HIV Data Power BI dashboard

Power BI & ArcGIS Online

  • Power BI is a business analytics solution that lets users visualize data and share insights for real-time decision making.
  • ArcGIS Online is a cloud-based mapping and analysis solution that we’re using to make maps and perform rich geospatial analysis

Over the past few months, Blue Raster has been in the field with the ICAP team to:

  • Introduce Power BI and ArcGIS online as a data visualization platform.
  • Illustrate the analytic capabilities of the tools to the Ministries of Health and national Public Health entities

Blue Raster and ICAP walked through different implementation options with country teams, considering existing data systems and analytic tools. In addition, it was critical that HIV data get to the decision makers in a timely and usable format.

In Rwanda:

 

  • Held meetings with local implementing partners and the Ministry of Health and decided on Power BI and ArcGIS online licensing and deployment
TRACE in Rwanda
Bheki Magagula of ICAP Maps out the Rwanda Data Flow

In Eswatini:

 

  • We facilitated discussions in which the Ministry of Health team and the ICAP team came to a deployment decision quickly.
  • The teams were able to spend time working in Power BI and shaping the data in the back end of the system.
TRACE in Rwanda
Mpumelelo Ndlangamanga of ICAP works with Blue Raster on Visuals in Power BI

In Ethiopia:

  • Held a week-long training providing tailored content to data consumers, developers, and administrators (with participants from Ethiopia Public Health Institute, ICAP, and CDC)
  • Data consumers worked in Power BI and walked through decision making exercises using sample data.
  • Developers and admins walked through Power BI as a whole, from ingesting data to publishing/sharing reports to monitoring usage and incorporating end-user feedback.
TRACE in Ethiopia
Power BI Developers from Ethiopia Public Health Institute, CDC, and ICAP

These introductory workshops and trainings are just the beginning of our work with ICAP and country teams. Stay tuned to the blog for details on how this data is being used and how the trainings are adding value to the daily work of those on the front lines of ending the HIV epidemic.

Moving forward, ICAP and Blue Raster will have the opportunity to work with other countries in Sub Saharan Africa. For more information about the TRACE initiative and the countries we work in, please see https://trace-recency.org/ or visit our blog post.


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