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GIS Data Sources: General Collections and Info

Utilities and Format Translators

Software Companies

  • ESRI
    Environmental Systems Research Institute, Inc., a leading producer of GIS and desktop mapping software (e.g., ArcGIS).
  • MapInfo
    Producers of MapInfo, a desktop mapping software package often used in business and marketing applications.
  • Intergraph
    Makers of GIS and related software.

Data Warehouses and Links

Broad Data Collections

  • ArcGIS Hub  Thousands of free GIS datasets primarily from U.S. federal, state, and local agencies, but some international areas, too.
  • Colllection of over 100,000 geospatial datasets in all sort of formats, from federal and state agencies, universities, non-profits, city governments, and other entities.  The geospatial subset of (be aware that some of's "non-geospatial" datasets actually have locational information).
  • ESRI Data & Maps
  • Layers covering the USA, international areas, and the entire world; Duke Only
  • Global GIS DVD: Compiled by the USGS and the Amean Geological Institute; contains USGS and other public domain data, including global coverages at a nominal scale of 1:1 million in the following categories: Economic Structures, Environment, Gazeteers, Imagery, Land, Political, Rasters, Reference, Transportation, and Utilities.  Several formats, mostly shapefiles or rasters.

Links to GIS Data and Information

Other Miscellaneous Collections

  • GIS Data Depot from Geo Community
    Provides free GIS data and GIS software products for downloading, or allows purchase of the data of your choice on CD-ROM. Data is arranged geographically. "The majority of the data provided  ... has been downloaded by our staff from a wide range of GIS Web sites located on the Internet." "Most of the vector data is available in E00, SHP, MIF, DXF, or DLG SDTS format and the raster data is available in TIFF or JPEG format." The files are usually compressed or combined in some way (zipped, gzipped, or tarred).