What is EIGS?
The Enterprise for Innovative Geospatial Solutions (EIGS) is a cluster of private companies, university research programs, state agencies, and complementary partner programs working together to research, develop, and market new geospatial technology products.
With high technology companies from around the state and region and research programs from four universities within the Mississippi Research Consortium, EIGS encompasses both the science and the business of geospatial technology. By supporting both entrepreneurs and researchers, EIGS strives to make Mississippi the home of the U.S. geospatial and remote sensing industry.
EIGS’s unique structure and efficient use of funding, enables it to meet the constantly changing needs of this new emerging technology sector. EIGS provides its industry cluster members with access to business and marketing support. In addition, EIGS facilitates complementary geospatial and remote sensing research and workforce development activities.
What is geospatial technology?
Geospatial technology is the science and technology of gathering, analyzing, interpreting, distributing and using geographic information. Geospatial technology encompasses a broad range of disciplines that can be brought together to create a detailed but understandable picture of the physical world and our place in it. These disciplines include:
- Remote sensing
- Geographic information systems (GIS)
- Global positioning system (GPS)
- Data modeling, management, and analysis
What prompted Mississippi’s desire to become a leader in this business cluster?
The initiative began in August 1996 when then-NASA Administrator Dan Goldin issued a challenge to Mississippi to become a leader in remote sensing. Goldin offered to commit $3 million per year for five years, if matched by the state and industry, to develop the infrastructure necessary for furthering the remote sensing industry in Mississippi. The University of Mississippi Chancellor Robert Khayat put together a collaboration among the State, NASA, private space-related businesses, and our four major universities to meet the challenge. Today, the program is funded through the State of Mississippi and continues to grow and evolve to meet the growing demands of this industry.
What benefits would my company receive by becoming a member of EIGS?
EIGS provides its members with a number of valuable business services which include, but are not limited to:
- Media Support and Outreach:
EIGS assists in the development and distribution of press releases to assist you in getting your companies’ successes, achievements, and products out into the public. For 2007-08, EIGS generated press releases which resulted in 98 earned media articles from unique media outlets, such as: The Mississippi Business Journal, USA Today, The Clarion Ledger, The Sun Herald, The Stennis News, Directions Magazine, GIS Café News, just to name a few.
- Conferences, Meetings, & Trade Shows:
EIGS represents the cluster and its member companies at targeted conferences, meetings, and trade shows. This includes highlighting products and services provided by member companies.
- Networking Opportunities:
The unique structure of EIGS provides partnering opportunities among its members. Companies with complementary products team to respond to customer’s needs in new and innovative ways by working together to fill gaps in each other’s business schemes and capabilities.
- Assistance with Procurement Opportunities:
EIGS monitors geospatial procurement opportunities for EIGS company members and shares information with individual companies as appropriate.
- Administrative Business Support:
EIGS provides administrative support including access to office furniture, communications equipment and supplies, technical support, and meeting rooms (specific to Stennis Space Center).
- Marketing Studies:
EIGS engages market analysis studies of potential geospatial technology applications that can be developed into marketable products by EIGS member companies.
EIGS maintains a website which serves as a resource portal for the geospatial industry, including weekly news updates. As a member of EIGS, your company information will be prominently featured.
- A Monthly Newsletter:
The Sensor is the only monthly electronic newsletter in Mississippi dedicated to bringing the latest developments from Mississippi’s geospatial industry cluster. By being a member of EIGS, you have the opportunity to showcase your company’s latest news and developments in this monthly publication which is distributed to an audience of over 1,800 subscribers including academia, government, and private industry.
Is there a fee to join?
There is no fee for membership for companies that meet the membership criteria.
What is expected from the companies involved in EIGS?
EIGS Companies are expected to:
- Attend the EIGS Annual Meeting;
- Keep EIGS staff informed of developments of interest and importance to the cluster;
- As requested, provide timely and accurate company contact and product information; and,
- Annually provide EIGS with economic data about their company’s operations including, but not limited to: employment, average annual salary, payroll, revenues, and corporate investment.