How the Community Creates the Canadian & International Geospatial Digests & Briefs
GoGeomatics has come a long way since it was just me clacking away on my keyboard. The first articles in the magazine were done by me and Ted Makinnon way back in the mid-2000s.
Now we have a whole team of amazing volunteer writers and editors contributing articles and meeting regularly each week online.
As a group, we produce articles as well as digests. Each week the digests come in one of two types. A Canadian geospatial digest and an international digest. The Canadian one is all about Canadian stories. The international one is everything without a Canadian focus. We want to focus on Canada but it’s just as important to see what is happening around the world.
How did it start? COVID Made me!
Just like many of the changes in our lives now, it was COVID that was the catalyst for this new endeavor. When our networking groups had to stop I wanted to offer people an opportunity to continue to get together and talk. Early in the pandemic, I tried doing a regular social but that only really allows one person to talk online. Not very social. What could we do online that was a group effort that would work on Zoom?
Never one to give up on something I changed my approach. I put a call out on our job board for volunteers to join a new group called the Writers and editors group. I had been writing the Canadian digests myself for several years to help inform the Canadian community about what was happening, but I realized that if I gave other members of the community a chance to share what they thought was important it would be a win for the community.
A new Canadian Geo leadership opportunity is born
So now we meet each Tuesday night on Zoom and have been for over 3 years.
All across Canada, our volunteer editors and group writers gather virtually, each week, to discuss and share the newest geospatial news. These meetings have two parts. The first is selecting stories online that they think are important to share with the wider GoGeomatics community.
Each writer prepares a few interesting articles they have researched. During our meeting we each talk about the story we have selected to present and why we think it’s important. Each researched article is selected based on its relevance, credibility, and interest to the geospatial community. After the team shares all their researched articles, all members vote on the most relevant pieces to write a briefing about.
After we complete the digest we discuss what’s going on in the Canadian geospatial community and their importance to us and the sector.
Through this effort, we offer opportunities to network with peers, learn some things and share our passion with the community. All our work gets published in the Canadian Spatial Times newsletter each week in its own section.
Our volunteers’ dedication is very valuable to our community. Their efforts embody the spirit of what it means to really be the change you wish to see in the community.
The Executive team
The group has had over 30 different members since its inception some staying for a few months to others participating for multiple years. The group is self-led with an executive team consisting of the longest-serving members of the group.
If you are interested in joining this amazing group please send us a letter of interest here.