White paper: Geospatial Technologies for Campus Safety - The Geo-Enabled Plan for Incident Management & Coordination


The white paper was developed by Jessica Valenti, the Facilities Information Systems (FIS) Manager at UMass Lowell, after participation in the 2016 National Alliance for Public Safety GIS Foundation’s National Geospatial Preparedness Summit, held in in partnership with the Department of Homeland Security. Much of the white paper content was gathered through formal presentations as well as conversation with the 180 public safety and emergency preparedness attendees. Additional resources are cited throughout the paper and include but are not limited to the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), Disaster Resilient Universities Network, as well as collaboration with regional emergency management agencies.

The fourteen (14) page white paper is focused on how the campus facilities management (FM) technology professional can apply geospatial technologies to assist in the planning, response and recovery of campus emergency events. There are many aspects of campus safety including mass notification systems, security technologies, threat assessments and formal response plans. These technologies are beyond the scope of this specific paper, and are likely being considered by campus police or emergency and risk management departments. The intent of this white paper is to highlight where the GIS or FM technology professional can participate in the process. Here, the focus is on how one can geo-enable the campus safety plan through data awareness and data accessibility.

This white paper on GIS & Campus Safety was created in partnership with the Campus FM Technology Association (CFTA) on behalf of the CFTA Grant Review Task Force.  For information on this task force and how to apply for future CFTA grants, visit our Task Forces web page.


  • Defining the Need
  • Why This Topic is Important to Campus FM
  • Evaluating Impact: Risk Reduction & Cost Avoidance
  • Where to Begin?
    • Key Decision Points
    • Common Gaps
    • Life Saving is Over, What Now?
    • Data Points to Consider
  • Examples: What You Can Do within Campus FM (six examples)
  • Training and Educational Opportunities
    • Introductory Courses by Topic
    • Example Courses by Position and Purpose
  • Resources and Other Organizations

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