National GAP Conference 2007—Discussion groups report

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Open-file Report




Ratz, J.M. and B.L. Lamb

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We led two discussion groups during the 2007 National GAP Conference. These discussion groups provided information to help develop a survey of National Gap Analysis Program (GAP) data users. GAP provides spatial data for use as a framework to make assessments regarding how well biodiversity is protected, and to evaluate what aspects of biodiversity need greater protection. One group discussed technical issues, and the second group discussed the use of GAP data for decisionmaking. Themes emerging from the technical issues group included concerns about data quality, need for information on how to use data, and passive data distribution. The decisionmaking discussion included a wide range of topics including the need to understand presentation of information, the need to connect with and understand users of data, the revision of GAP’s mission, and the adaptability of products and data. The decisionmaking group also raised concerns regarding technical issues. One conclusion is that a deep commitment to ongoing information transfer and support is a key component of success for the GAP program.