Get Started

1. Download and install QGIS

QGIS is free Geospatial Information System (GIS) software available for Windows, macOS, Linux, and Android. QGIS version 3.28 is the oldest version supported by QGreenland. 

2. Download the QGreenland Core package

You may download the package from the National Snow and Ice Data Center (primary server) or the Polar Geospatial Center (partner server). After downloading, unzip and save the folder in a location of your choice. 

3. Open the qgreenland.qgz file and start exploring!

To open the full QGreenland Core data package in QGIS, go to your QGreenland folder and open the qgreenland.qgz file (this will automatically open QGIS). Or, you can first open QGIS and then open the qgreenland.qgz project file from there. 

4. New to QGIS or QGreenland? 

Use our ~1-hour video tutorial series to get started.


Citing QGreenland

QGreenland should be cited or acknowledged when publishing content made from or using QGreenland. Users must also cite the original data source. Citation information is provided with all QGreenland data layers. Additional citation and license information is available via the QGreenland Core Documentation.

Current citation (v3.0): There are 2 citable components.

1) The QGreenland QGIS data package is cited as a [dataset] (likely use by researchers and educators).

Moon, T. A., M. Fisher, T. Stafford, and A. Thurber (2023). QGreenland (v3) [dataset], National Snow and Ice Data Center.

2) The software that generates the QGIS data package from source data is cited as [software] (likely use by software developers).

*Fisher, M., *T. Stafford, T. Moon, and A. Thurber (2023). QGreenland (v3) [software], National Snow and Ice Data Center.     
     * Denotes co-equal lead authorship

Sample acknowledgement: We acknowledge the National Snow and Ice Data Center QGreenland package.


Greenland coast


QGreenland should not be used as a sole navigational aid while performing remote research activities in Greenland. Always bring appropriate safety and navigational aids (including hard-copies of topographic maps) when visiting the field.

QGreenland is a data-viewing and analysis platform, and the QGreenland Team does not create new data. QGreenland's layers may contain errors from the original data providers. QGreenland makes no guarantees about the accuracy and validity of data contained in QGreenland. Also, some layers may not perfectly align with each other due to unidentified georeferencing issues with the original data. We recommend using the 'Greenland coastlines 2017' layer as the best approximation reference layer for geolocating Greenland's coastline.

Note that some data were transformed from their native data formats, projections, and resolutions for inclusion within QGreenland. The included metadata (Layer Properties -> Metadata -> History) contains provenance information on any transformations. All QGreenland geopackages and geotiffs are projected in EPSG:3413.