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Geosciences 2018, 8(10), 379;

Where, What, When, and Why Is Bottom Mapping Needed? An On-Line Application to Set Priorities Using Expert Opinion

NOS/NCCOS/MSE/Biogeography Branch, Silver Spring, MD 20910, USA
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 18 September 2018 / Revised: 9 October 2018 / Accepted: 11 October 2018 / Published: 16 October 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Geological Seafloor Mapping)
PDF [4028 KB, uploaded 16 October 2018]


Globally, there is a lack of resources to survey the vast seafloor areas in need of basic mapping data. Consequently, smaller areas must be prioritized to address the most urgent needs. We developed a systematic, quantitative approach and on-line application to gather mapping suggestions from diverse stakeholders. Participants are each provided with 100 virtual coins to place throughout a region of interest to convey their mapping priorities. Inputs are standardized into a spatial framework using a grid and pull-down menus. These enabled participants to convey the types of mapping products that they need, the rationale used to justify their needs, and the locations that they prioritize for mapping. This system was implemented in a proposed National Marine Sanctuary encompassing 2784 km2 of Lake Michigan, Wisconsin. We demonstrate key analyses of the outputs, including coin counts, cell ranking, and multivariate cluster analysis for isolating high priority topics and locations. These techniques partition the priorities among the disciplines of the respondents, their selected justifications, and types of desired map products. The results enable respondents to identify potential collaborations to achieve common goals and more effectively invest limited mapping funds. The approach can be scaled to accommodate larger geographic areas and numbers of participants and is not limited to seafloor mapping. View Full-Text
Keywords: decision support; planning; participatory GIS; prioritization; seafloor mapping decision support; planning; participatory GIS; prioritization; seafloor mapping

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Kendall, M.S.; Buja, K.; Menza, C.; Battista, T. Where, What, When, and Why Is Bottom Mapping Needed? An On-Line Application to Set Priorities Using Expert Opinion. Geosciences 2018, 8, 379.

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