The Use of Contemporary Information Technologies for Coastal Research and Management-A Review


  • Peter R. O'Regan


Data, Technology, information management, remote sensing, Global Positioning System, Geographic Information System, predictive models, Internet


The need for better monitoring and analysis of the coastal environment has increased dramatically in recent years, in particular along coastal boundaries where human activities are extensive and give rise to numerous adverse impacts. During the last decade, rapid advances in computer technology have revolutionized the processes of data collection and analysis within coastal research. These advances have significantly increased our ability to understand the complex interrelationships between coastal processes and to effectively manage the resources of the coastal zone. This paper describes aspects of four technologies which are at the forefront of the 'information revolution', namely: remote sensing, Global Positioning Systems (GPS), Geographic Information Systems (GIS), and the Internet. Having introduced each technology, the discussion focuses on their current (and potential) uses and the benefits which can accrue from their adoption.