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Prioritize location definitions

Location Architect allows you to create relationships between attribute forms in your MicroStrategy project and ArcGIS location types such as Address, US State, or Country. These relationships, called location definitions, are stored in your model. Location definitions are used by Esri Maps for MicroStrategy at run time to automatically generate a map layer from the data in a report.

To learn more about how location definitions work, see What is Location Architect?

Purpose of prioritization

You can create location definitions for all attribute forms in your MicroStrategy project that could be displayed on a map. Once you have created several location definitions in your model, you can set their priority order. The priority order you specify determines which location definition will be rendered as a layer on the map when your grid data matches multiple location definitions in the model.

For example, suppose a report grid contains rows of addresses with the column fields Cust address, Cust city, Cust state, Cust zip, and Cust country, and the model contains the following location definitions in the order shown:

NameLocation typeFields



Cust address, Cust city, Cust state, Cust zip


US City

Cust city, Cust state


US State

Cust state



Cust country

When rendering a map using this grid and the model, the fields in the grid are compared to the fields in the model's location definitions to find one or more matching location definitions. A location definition is found to be matching when all of its fields are in the grid. In this scenario, all four location definitions are matches as all fields for each location definition are in the grid.

Matching location definitions and highest priority match

Because multiple matches are found, the matching location definition with the highest priority (closest to the top of the table) is chosen to be rendered as a layer on the map. In this case, because the Addresses location definition has the highest priority, a layer showing addresses will be drawn on the map.

Choose a priority order

When setting the priority of location definitions in your model, it is important to consider how the attribute data in each location definition relates to the location type chosen. Consider the previous example, in which the Addresses location definition has the highest priority in the model. The attribute forms in this location definition are addresses stored as rows in the MicroStrategy project. The attribute fields are mapped to the Address location type, which defines addresses as point features. Each row of address data is mapped to one address feature (a one-to-one relationship). Therefore, each address row will be rendered as a point feature in the generated layer.

One-to-one relationship between rows of address data and address point features on the map

Now suppose that the States location definition was at the top of the table instead of the Addresses location definition, giving the States location definition the highest priority. Because this location definition is based on the US States location type and the report grid contains multiple rows of addresses for each state (a many-to-one relationship), a layer created from this grid would display multiple state features corresponding to the number of individual address rows associated with each state. This would not be an appropriate representation of the current grid.

In the same way, the Cities location definition must have a higher priority than States, and States must be higher than Countries, to ensure that grid data is rendered correctly as a layer on the map.

To learn more about location types, see Choose a location type.

Change the priority order

The priority order of a location definition can be changed by moving it up or down in the table.

  1. In Location Architect, press the Location definitions tab.
  2. Choose a location definition in the table.
  3. Use the Higher priority and Lower priority buttons (up and down arrows) to move the location definition to the desired location in the table. The closer a location definition is to the top of the table, the higher its priority.
  4. Repeat steps 2 and 3 to change the priority of other location definitions.