While many applications claim to be “GIS-based” and integrate with other software products, the broad meaning of the term confused and frustrated users experiencing problems with integration. As a result, some of the leading GIS, modeling vendors, and Esri-based software developers banded together to form the National Association of GIS-Centric Solutions (NAGCS). The group is dedicated to furthering the development of GIS-centric software for all industries, encouraging the use of GIS-based enterprise systems, increasing interoperability and integration among GIS-related software products, and distinguishing the benefits of GIS-centric software and applications. Look for their logo on products that are NAGCS certified. For more information on NAGCS, visit www.nagcs.org.

There are well established rules defining the unique characteristics of the GIS-centric approach:

  1. The Esri ArcGIS geodatabase is the asset / feature data repository.
  2. The asset / feature data storage is non-redundant with no reliance on views, links, data mapping, or database triggers.
  3. The asset / feature data model is fully user-definable and customizable without vendor support.
  4. The format of the asset / feature data structures is non-proprietary for field names, types, tables, relationships, and other data design
  5. The shared asset / feature data design allows other GIS-centric solutions to concurrently utilize
    the asset / feature data.
  6. Inherently location-aware asset / feature data structure enables full utilization of GIS analysis and
    modeling tools.
  7. ArcGIS software is used to create and maintain the asset / feature data (including for coordinates,
    shapes, attributes, and data error identification / correction methods), preserving the integrity
    of the geodatabase relationships, domains, data types, etc.