Integrating Disparate Spatial Datasets from Local to National Scale for Open-Access Web-Based Visualization and Analysis: A Case Study Compiling U.S. Landslide Inventories

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Spatial data on landslide occurrence across the U.S. varies greatly in quality, accessibility, and extent. This problem of data variability is common across USGS Mission Areas; it presents an obstacle to developing national-scale products and to identifying areas with relatively good/bad data coverage. We compiled available data of known landslides into a national-scale, searchable online map, ...

Spatial data on landslide occurrence across the U.S. varies greatly in quality, accessibility, and extent. This problem of data variability is common across USGS Mission Areas; it presents an obstacle to developing national-scale products and to identifying areas with relatively good/bad data coverage. We compiled available data of known landslides into a national-scale, searchable online map, which greatly increases public access to landslide hazard information. Additionally, we held a workshop with landslide practitioners and sought broader input from the CDI community; based on recommendations we identified a limited subset of essential attributes for inclusion in our product. We also defined a quantitative metric for confidence in data quality and developed simple scripts to assign confidence to each landslide in the inventory. Our approach can be used to inform other national-scale products to be compiled from disparate spatial datasets, particularly for projects with limited resources allocated to data management and maintenance.