4. Coordinate systems

This section will briefly introduce the concept of coordinate systems in GIS. For any analysis, it is important to know the coordinate system of the data which represent the study area (region of interest) and to ensure that all of your data layers are already in, or can be converted to, that coordinate system. Basic knowledge about coordinate systems is recommended before any type of spatial analysis is conducted as they can affect the resulting outputs. It is also important to know the capabilities and weaknesses of each specific coordinate system used in analysis. For more in-depth information about coordinate systems in GIS see Seeger (1999).