I am about to start a project with a number of people for a nonprofit organization. I am wanting to create the files in QGIS, but some of the people that I am working with are city officials and might feel more comfortable using ArcGIS for Desktop as opposed to QGIS.

If I were to create project files in QGIS could others open up them up in ArcGIS for Desktop? Or is there a way for me to export it to a file that could be opened in ArcGIS for Desktop? Or maybe there is file conversion plug-in that could be used?


No it's not possible.

Like PolyGeo said you could write a conversion script using ArcPy that reads the QGIS project file (which is just XML) and load each layer. There would be a bit of work but you might even be able to match some of the styling. However there would be a lot of effort in this and it might not be worth it for a single project.

  • Is using arcpy.mapping to read the QGIS project file and add layers before saving as a *.mxd perhaps an option to do a rough translation? – PolyGeo Jun 15 '13 at 22:20
  • True you could do that, although that's just going to give you the layers with no styling. – Nathan W Jun 15 '13 at 22:25
  • Updated my answer. – Nathan W Jun 15 '13 at 22:27

Well. I asked this question 7 years ago and it turns out someone out there has found an answer to converting MXD's to Qgis. Pretty exciting to see how far we have come.


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