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URISA's GIS and Health Symposium

URISA is pleased to present this symposium to explore the many uses of GIS for public health access, processes, and decision-making.  The conference was developed as a result of a high level of interest in the 'public health program track' presented at URISA's annual conference for several years.  A dedicated committee of well-known and respected professionals in the field have spearheaded this effort to create a specialty educational event to promote sharing of information and networking within the Public Health & GIS community. The inaugural conference took place in May 2007 in New Orleans.  In 2009, the conference was presented in Providence, Rhode Island; in 2011 in Atlanta, Georgia; Miami in June 2013; and in Washington DC in 2016. It is guided and organized by an esteemed group of professionals.  Without their expertise and enthusiasm, this conference would not be possible. 

UPDATE: Instead of hosting a stand-alone GIS and Health Symposium in 2018, we have decided to instead integrate a GIS in Health & Human Services focus into our annual conference (GIS-Pro & CalGIS 2018 in Palm Springs, California). We’ll solicit abstracts as usual and work to develop a solid track. The intention is to bring more attention to the important topic to then host a stand-alone event again in the near future.

2016 Symposium: In partnership with the American Public Health Association (APHA), URISA presented the 2016 GIS and Health Symposium in Washington DC. The theme for the Symposium was “Mapping the Way to Healthy Communities”.  

Symposium Schedule - details about sessions, workshops, speakers and events. 

Certification Credits: The Symposium was approved for up to 13 CPH credits by the American Public Health Association and  36.25 AICP-CM credits by the American Institute of Certified Planners. In addition, attendance at the Symposium counts toward education points for GIS professional certification or renewal (GISP).  

Thank you to our Symposium Sponsors!


Symposium Committee

The 2016 GIS and Health Symposium is directed by a phenomenal group of professionals who volunteer their expertise, time and enthusiasm to the production of this event. 

Symposium Chair: Teresa Townsend, AICP (Planning Communities, Raleigh, NC)

  • Stephen Berry, GISP (Clark County, KY)
  • Andrew Curtis, PhD (Kent State University)
  • Bernadette deLeon, PhDc (Indiana University)
  • Este Geraghty, MD, MS, MPH, CPH, FACP, GISP (Esri, Redlands, CA)
  • Timothy E. Gibbs, MPH (Delaware Academy of Medicine and the Delaware Public Health Association)
  • Wansoo Im, PhD (Vertices & Rutgers University)
  • Carl Kinkade, GISP (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA)
  • Russell Kirby, PhD, MS (University of South Florida)
  • Imelda Moise, PhD, MPH (University of Miami, FL)
  • Marilyn O’Hara Ruiz, PhD (University  of Illinois)
  • Alyssa Randall (Planning Communities, Raleigh, NC)
  • Kate Robb (American Public Health Association, Washington, DC)
  • Liora Sahar, PhD, GISP (American Cancer Society, Atlanta, GA)
  • Ann Steedly, P.E. (Planning Communities, Raleigh, NC)
  • Jim Tobias, MSc, GISP (Northrup Grumman/Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, Atlanta, GA)

Conference Partners

URISA - The Urban and Regional Information Systems Association (URISA) is an independent, not-for-profit 501c(3) organization established in 1966. URISA fosters excellence in GIS through its programs, guiding and supporting GIS professionals throughout their careers. www.urisa.org 

APHA - APHA champions the health of all people and all communities. We strengthen the public health profession. We speak out for public health issues and policies backed by science. We are the only organization that influences federal policy, has a 140-plus year perspective and brings together members from all fields of public health. www.apha.org 

View 2013 Conference Program

Conference History 

Conference Vision: To provide an open and participatory forum for  advancing the effective use of spatial information and geographic information systems technologies across the domains of public health, healthcare and community health preparedness.


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