Today GIS is a major computer application with uses that range from the management of natural resources by government agencies and corporations, to the operations of utility companies, to support for scientific research and education. The use of GIS has now spread very widely among the sciences, and it is now an accepted tool among all of the disciplines that deal with the surface of the Earth and its human population. Moreover the concept of GIS has evolved substantially, and GIS also claims to be an integrating technology, spanning disciplines and blur ring the distinctions between them, both important prerequisites for any broadly useful research infrastructure. The use of GIS has prompted interest in a number of fundamental issues that are collectively identified as geographic information science.
GIS and the Social Sciences: Theory and Applications is dedicated to GIS research and its applications in the fields of Sociology, Criminology, Public Health, Geography, Anthropology, Political Science, and Environmental Studies. GIS (Geographic Information Systems) has grown in popularity as a powerful tool for spatial analysis in the social sciences. Social Science Data and Software (SSDS) continues to build a collaborative network of expertise, support, and resources for GIS and spatial statistical analysis. SSDS has always been a repository of social science numeric data and recent efforts have expanded its collection of spatial data for research and instruction, again with a focus on the social science. This monograph is a valuable resource for students or any social scientist or practitioner interested in applying GIS technology to his or her work.