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Jonathan Murphy’s Address to GeoIgnite Delegates 2019 with Photos

What follows is my welcome address to open the GeoIgnite 2019 conference. I was pretty nervous so read a lot of it verbatim but got a little more ad-lib as I relaxed. Glad no one threw tomatoes.   I’ve left the typos in and the awkward phrasing.  Also note that Bilyana Anicic and Peggy March both helped me with the speech.

We begin:

Jonathan Murphy Welcoming delegates to GeoIgnite 2019

On behalf of the Conference Organizing committee and GoGeomatics Canada welcome to GeoIgnite.  My name is Jonathan Murphy, and I am the Managing Director of GoGeomatics Canada and I’m honored to be the chair for GeoIgnite.


We would like to begin by acknowledging that the land on which we gather is the traditional, unseeded territory of the Algonquin People.


GeoIgnite started as an idea.  That idea was to create an event that supports a grassroots collaborative ecosystem.  We know that professionals in government, the private sector and academia are working hard on innovations that benefit, not only us in Canada, but the World. This conference is focused on providing a platform for updates on technology, data, services and leadership.  This year’s theme is leadership, innovation and next level technology.

We have selected topics on disruptive technologies and processes. From Location Intelligence, AI and the Internet of things, to the geospatial Cloud, remote sensing, autonomous vehicles and emergency response. We are here to discuss what they mean to you and the future of your organization.

Today’s world is changing so rapidly, that an event like this is essential for us all to work together.

Geospatial Technology impacts us, and is used by us, almost every hour of every day.

The Power of geospatial is only matched by its diversity of use.

That diversity is not only important for the Geospatial tech itself—it is important for the people who make and use the technology.

The GeoIgnite Conference and our sponsors are proud to present the inaugural Diversity in Leadership Summit (DILS). It is our vision that GeoIgnite will spur the grassroots of a more diverse ecosystem where diversity of thinking and knowledge will ignite innovation and better outcomes for us all.

First day plenary of GeoIgnite 2019

Looking towards the future, GeoIgnite has a co-located a Career event called “The future of Geospatial careers”. This allows job seekers, new graduates and students access to the exhibition and their own focused talks.

The conference committee invites you, our participants, speakers and exhibitors to not only experience the event over the next two days, but to also look forward to the future developments of this event and our field.  GeoIgnite is the seed that will grow into a truly national location technology event.

Our aim is to enhance an already strong tech sector in Ottawa. We can do that by focusing on location technologies and how they are being leveraged across all sectors.  A national event is necessary if we are to highlight our foundational role in the digital disruption already taking place globally.  Shortly, I will be introducing our important keynotes and we will have a discussion on the impacts of the current digital disruptions and what they mean for Canada and the World.

The hope is that in five years we are 1,000 delegates strong as we maintain our Canadian geospatial foundations and grow to embrace the sectors and industries that are leveraging the science of “Where” so successfully.  Industries like Energy, Transportation, Retail, health, Smart Cities, security, insurance and finance.   We know location science is important; it is time that we have a national event that reflects that importance.

For industry, GeoIgnite is an opportunity to showcase innovative technologies, services, people and data.  For government, GeoIgnite provides an opportunity to get out of our silos and learn and share the important work being done for the benefit of Canadians and our planet.

I would be remiss if I did not mention a historic  event that took place last week. An event that will forever go down in history

Sponsors GeoIgnite 2019

as a milestone for the Canadian community.

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Of course I refer to the NBA championship win of the Toronto Raptors.  Go Raptors! WE THE NORTH (ARROW) 😉

-Play Video

The other historic event was also amazing. That was the Radarsat Constellation Mission.

The RCM is a billion dollar investment in the future of Canadian Geomatics.  A thank you to everyone involved on that project. We will hear more about it at GeoIgnite.

Play Video on second slide


We extend our sincere appreciation to our sponsors whose support and investment have made this inaugural event possible. We invite you to support these community-minded organizations.

Your GeoIgnite platinum sponsor is Mapbox who has stepped up to anchor our inaugural.   Our gold sponsors are, Sparkgeo, CartoVista, Global Grid System, Skywatch and Ecopia. Our silver sponsor is First Base Solutions.

Ottawa Mayor Jim Watson welcoming delegates to GeoIgnite 2019

In addition, we thank our community and media sponsors. Aurora Consulting, HERE Technologies, MAXAR, PCI Geomatics, Invest Ottawa, Geospatial Media, the OGC, the Lidar News, and our good friends the Canadian GIS & Geomatics website.

We thank the support of Natural Resources Canada and the Canada Centre for Mapping and Earth Observation. Thank you to Director General Prashant Shukle and his team.

We all have a role to play. As participants we invite you to learn, network and share.  Now we will introduce an honored guest.


Ottawa is Canada’s technology city and the birthplace of many of the foundational location technologies from remote sensing to GIS.  On that note it is my honor to invite his worship, Mayor Jim Watson to address our delegates who have come from across Canada, the United States, Australia, Asia and Europe.

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