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I have a shapefile of landcover. It was developed from a raster dataset (the Crop Data Layer).

I also have a grid of 50x50m cells (polygons in a shapefile) I have overlain on the landcover shapefile. It's only a subset of 1 county at this point, so it's not too terribly large.

I want to give an attribute to each cell that corresponds to the largest landcover category underneath.

I would prefer to do this with the shapefiles, as I made several modifications to the shapefile after converting it from the raster. But if it can only be done with a raster, then I'll take that route.

I have tried spatial joins and the update overlay tool in vector data. I have tried to take raster data, convert it to point data, then to raster, then back to polygon, but doing that you lose the habitat code for the data.

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This sounds like classical resampling problem. By using Resample tool in Data Management >Raster Processing, you can generate a new lattice of choice. As far as i know ArcGIS takes the majority in assigning the raster ressample. However the MAUP still prevails.

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