NGP User Engagement Office

Natural Resources Conservation Community of Use

The Natural Resources Conservation - Community of Use (NRC COU) works with the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) National Geospatial Program (NGP) to address the geospatial data, products, and service needs of natural resource conservation scientists, land managers, and other related professionals. 

The National Map is a collaborative effort among the USGS and other Federal, State, and local partners to improve and deliver topographic information for the Nation.

The NRC Community is comprised of representatives from state and federal government, academia, and non-profit groups that use geospatial data to support their conservation activities. The Committee meets regularly to explore enhancements that will make NGP products and services more useful to this community. These outreach efforts will expand through increased interaction between the members of the Technical Committee and their colleagues throughout the broader conservation community.

The Community of Use along with select USGS staff are engaged in:

  • Identifying opportunities to improve data holdings of the NGP.

  • Identifying partnership opportunities and engaging in data sharing agreements.

  • Identifying opportunities to improve various NGP products and services.

  • Providing feedback to the NGP about current and future GIS data and delivery directions.


The NGP is taking a broad view of natural resource conservation, seeking input from multiple areas of interest throughout the community in order to determine where NGP products and services most benefit the user community. As more is learned from the community, NGP will focus its efforts on high impact areas that demonstrate the greatest need for enhanced NGP deliverables. Areas of application may include:

  • Mapping land management agency features in support of planning, resource inventory, and decision making.

  • Mapping and data acquisition of various features that are important for conservation and land management activities.

  • Products and services related to ecological modeling.

  • Landscape analyses.

  • Conservation assessment and modeling.

  • Forest, soils, and plains conservation planning.

  • Wildfire and post widlfire modeling and analysis.

  • Wildlife and Fisheries habitat modeling.

Community of Use Areas of Interest

  • Increased feature content maintained within NGP National Map databases and portrayed on US Topo products.

  • Establishment of a technical committee to formulate, review and prioritize requirements for National Geospatial Program (NGP) products and services that support natural resources conservation activities.

  • Committee membership includes USGS / Partner Agency scientists and managers with natural resources or land management background.

  • Education and outreach regarding the applicability and use of NGP products, services and capabilities.

  • NGP visits to the natural resource management mission areas within the USGS to establish ongoing communication and coordination.

  • Identification of and participation in training opportunities for Community of Use Liaisons to promote better understanding and awareness NRC COU needs.

Technical Committee

The Natural Resource Conservation COU Technical Committee assists the NGP COU coordinator in understanding and prioritizing enhancement requests submitted by the conservation community of users. The community is broadly represented by multiple federal agencies including USGS, USFS, NPS, USFWS, BLM, NRCS, private organizations, and academia. Membership is expected to transform over time to allow for continued outreach into new sectors of the community.

Users Include

  • USGS scientists associated with multiple mission areas including Ecosystems, Energy, and Minerals.

  • Broad array of federal resource management agencies.

  • Non-profit entities including The Nature Conservancy.

Future Plans

  • Identify user engagement points of contact through the Technical Committee and the USGS National Map Liaison network.

  • Continue gathering and reviewing enhancement suggestions submitted by the broader conservation community, for potential integration into the Fiscal Year program of work at NGP.

  • National Map Liaison network will identify conferences, meetings, and other activities where liaisons and the Community of Use Coordinator can engage a broad user base of natural resources conservation experts.


Greg Matthews

UE Published Maps Products and Services Focus Area Coordinator
NGP User Engagement Office
Phone: 303-202-4446