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Geography Awareness Week is an annual public awareness program that encourages citizens of all ages to think and learn about the significance of place and how we affect and are affected by it. Each third week of November, students, families and community members focus on the importance of geography by hosting events; using lessons, games, and challenges in the classroom; and often meeting with policymakers and business leaders as part of that year’s activities.

This year’s theme is “Explore! The Power of Maps,” and will take place November 15 – 21, 2015. More information on year’s theme, along with numerous resources on how to organize your own Geography Awareness Week event can be found on National Geographic’s Geography Awareness Week homepage.

This year, in conjunction with National Geographic, OpenStreetMap invites teachers, students, community groups, and map lovers in the US and around the world to join together to celebrate geography and make maps using OpenStreetMap.

Get Involved

To sign up for an event near you, plan your own mapathon, or to list an event visit OpenStreetMap ’s Geography Awareness Week website.

On Twitter, follow #osmgeoweek for updates during the week, and share your experiences using the #osmgeoweek hashtag.


GIS Day provides an international forum for users of geographic information systems (GIS) technology to demonstrate real-world applications that are making a difference in society.

The first formal GIS Day took place in 1999. Esri president and co-founder Jack Dangermond credits Ralph Nader with being the person who inspired the creation of GIS Day. He considered GIS Day a good initiative for people to learn about geography and the uses of GIS. He wanted GIS Day to be a grassroots effort and open to everyone to participate.

GIS Day takes place every year on the Wednesday of Geography Awareness Week. In 2015 this is November 18.

To register your GIS Day event and to access numerous resources for planning and promoting GIS Day events please visit Esri’s GIS Day homepage.