Data Management Tool (DMT)

THE CHALLENGE

Due to the vast amount of data and metadata stored by Region 9, maintaining an up-to-date and accurate inventory of data in enterprise geodatabases, ArcGIS Server services, and ArcGIS Online items was both arduous and complex. While Region 9 had deployed previous data management systems, they often relied on manual inventory updates and user input. Project-centric operations siloed data, often resulting in data and metadata replication.

In response to Region’s 9’s need for up-to-date and accurate data, Innovate developed the DMT, a customized Commercial-Off-the-Shelf (COTS) product.

THE SOLUTION

Winner of the Esri Federal Small Business Specialty 2018 Award for Innovation, the DMT serves as a live, single point of entry for all analysts to find resources and immediately identify their location, accuracy, and relevance from the Region’s Enterprise Geospatial Database. This includes multiple spatial representations (point, line, polygon, and raster data).

The DMT application provides a searchable, sortable, user-friendly interface that relates all of the data and validates the existence and completeness of related documentation based on EPA standards, including metadata, hosting environment, unique identifiers, update cycles, and sharing settings. If the metadata is incomplete, the DMT automatically prompts action to enforce updates. Innovate implemented keywords at feature class, map service, and ArcGIS Online levels to make the content searchable. The DMT displays feature classes across data types and the related service. The DMT uses International Organization for Standardization (ISO) 19115 metadata standards. We converted all old metadata from Federal Geographic Data Committee (FGDC) to ISO and created all new records in ISO. The DMT enables EPA GIS personnel to effectively manage more than 10,000 datasets used for all EPA Region 9 GIS-related projects.This solution improved the quality, consistency, and transparency of Region 9 geospatial resources.

Innovate developed the DMT using a SCRUM methodology, including product daily stand-ups, backlogs, and stories, using two-week sprints. Per the success of the development, EPA requested Innovate present our methodologies to facilitate the adoption of Agile practices within EPA. The DMT leverages the backends of enterprise geodatabases in Microsoft SQL Server, ArcGIS Server, and the ArcGIS Online Application Program Interface (API) for JavaScript to harvest and relate features in all three products. The system is deployed in several different FedRAMP compliant Amazon Web Services (AWS) cloud deployments and automatically harvests metadata for the enterprise geodatabases, map service layers, and ArcGIS Online items, including additional descriptions to indicate where data and rest services are used in ArcGIS Online.

Since we have an ongoing relationship with Region 9, we continue to make updates to the system based on the captured backlog items. Per the success of the DMT, Innovate is currently developing a similar tool under the Region 9 contract for the EPA-Navajo Tribe Data Portal Development for the rapid viewing of fresh data by Navajo and EPA GIS resources.

THE CLIENT

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA): Region 9

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