New Alliance Aims to Support and Strengthen GPS
The launch of the GPS Innovation Alliance on Feb. 13 signaled a new approach to GPS advocacy and support. Founded by members of the former U.S. GPS Industry Council as well as several members of the Coalition to Save Our GPS, the organization represents both manufacturers and users with an interest in protecting, promoting and enhancing GPS technology.
Jim Kirkland, vice president and general counsel for Trimble, one of the GPS Innovation Alliance founding members, said the name of the organization highlights the innovative and enabling nature of GPS and will help shape the goals of the organization. However, the group also has another focus. “The intent is to form more of a traditional trade association where we will deal with all the issues of interest to the manufacturers and users,” he said. “Innovation is an important part of that story, but advocacy across the board in terms of whatever issues are important is really the objective.”
Kirkland said he expects the GPS Innovation Alliance to grow over time to include many of the members of the Coalition to Save Our GPS as well as others who rely on GPS technology. Prospective members include companies and organizations involved in manufacturing, aviation, agriculture, construction, transportation, first responders, and surveying and mapping, as well as those who use GPS for automotive, boating, smartphones and tablets.
The group plans to be proactive in identifying and addressing issues of interest to the broad GPS manufacturer and user communities.
“Where issues come up that potentially affect GPS or any of the user communities, the alliance will support those user communities and will provide a voice on public policy issues,” Kirkland said.