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Does anyone have any insight into using R with ArcGIS Desktop?

I do not have any R experience, I mainly use SAS to do my data handling before I move into Arc. I currently run a geocoding and enriching process about eight times a year on data that's anywhere from 2 to 5 million records. Right now, I take the raw files for those and process in SAS and then move into ArcGIS Desktop to do the geocoding and enriching, and then export back out to dbf or text just to import back into SAS to finalize the output.

What I am seeking to understand is whether I can/should replace SAS in my processing method, with something like R which I can integrate into ArcGIS. To optimize my processing, I'd prefer to have everything in one application, instead of the various importing/exporting.

In my mind, I'm hoping to learn R and create a script to do my preprocessing and then have a Python script to run inside of ArcGIS that calls the R script, and then it will do the geocoding/enriching process as well.

Can someone tell me if this loose idea is possible with desktop ArcGIS?

marked as duplicate by PolyGeo arcgis-desktop Jun 12 '18 at 1:27

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  • 1
    If, after reviewing the duplicate you are still unsure, then try to focus your question some more. If you also want to ask a similar question for ArcGIS Pro then do that in a separate question. If you just want to throw ideas around then the GIS Chat Room is the place to do that rather than here on Main where focused Q&A is performed. – PolyGeo Jun 12 '18 at 1:29
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    You may be asking the wrong question. In hearing your workflow you can likely do everything in R, and its supporting spatial data packages/classes, without needing ArcGIS at all. – Jeffrey Evans Jun 12 '18 at 2:03

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