Geocoding 101: Leveraging "Where" in your data with at Branner Earth Sciences Library


Geocoded locatioins in the Bay Area
Date and Time 
February 3, 2023

Geocoding is the process of using of reference datasets (such as street networks, administrative boundaries and gazetteers) to convert text-based locations (such as street addresses, administrative unit codes or names or placenames) into explicit numeric locations (usually Lat Long coordinates) that can be further manipulated by computational systems, for routing, analysis, or just viewing on a map.

Stanford Libraries' service deploys 250+GB of Parcel, Street, POI & Administrative Boundary Data, including street address-level data for 149 countries that covers more than 90% of the world's population. These data are accessible natively through ArcGIS Pro, as well as programmatically, through a REST API that makes it possible to consume the locator services from platforms like R, Python and even QGIS.

This workshop will introduce the participant to several types of geocoding, through several planforms.

Topics will include:

  • An overview of Geocoding terminology and concepts
  • An overview of the services available from
  • An overview of the utility of geocoded data
  • Hands-on experience and demonstrations using from a number of platforms, including:
    • ArcGIS Pro
    • OpenRefine
    • QGIS
    • Python Notebooks
    • R

Prerequisites: Some level of basic GIS experience is assumed, though the material will be useful to beginners and power-users, alike.

Preparation: Please arrive with your own laptop, with the current Pre-Release (PR) version of QGIS installed for your operating system, as well as the most recent version of OpenRefine.