A Water Utility GIS for the La Jolla Indian Reservation: Moving Beyond the CAD Blueprint

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Committee Chair

R. Maxwell Baber, Ph.D.

Committee Members

Douglas M. Flewelling, Ph.D.


Water is an essential element of life, and as an essential government service, Native American tribes must ensure the delivery of clean drinking water on their reservations. However, limited resources can challenge management and delivery of this most basic service. In an effort to improve water utilities management, the La Jolla Band of Luiseño Indians initiated a GIS project to map and analyze their domestic water system. To that end, this project focused on the creation of a geometric data model that mimicked the real-world domestic water system on the reservation while establishing workflow processes to address incompatible data formats, namely CAD to GIS. The Tribe hopes that the foundation established by this project will lead to more advanced GIS applications, such as the ability to conduct network analysis, which would result in more directed repairs and maintenance, and thus, improved service delivery to residents. On a larger scale, this project speaks to the utility of GIS to further the ability of tribes to function as full-service governments and provides a potential framework for replication across other reservations in California.

Full text is available at the University of Redlands


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