24th FIG General Assembly, Seoul 2001

Appendix to item 9.3

Report for the 24th General Assembly
FIG Working Week in Seoul, 6-11 May 2001



Spatial information is an indispensable part of the basic infrastructure in the individual country. It is generally accepted that spatial information affects 80% of human decision making. Spatial Information Management is a dynamic concept. It changes in line with the technological possibilities and the political and organisational developments in society in general. Spatial Information Management is also about human resources and organisational changes. Being involved in spatial information management means to be in the centre between man and technology.

Commission 3 works through working groups and by bringing people together. It is an objective to offer people from different countries as well the possibility to share experiences as to be members of a global network. It is very gratifying to see an increasing number of participants to the various Commission meetings. At the last meeting in Athens we had almost 100 participants.

Working Week 2000

To promote and stimulate the dialogue in the commission the delegates had been encouraged to prepare short country reports for oral presentation. Seven delegates followed the request. It was impressive to hear the individual presentations. Because sharing of experiences and knowledge is a main objective for the delegates, there is no doubt about, that this activity will be an element in the agenda for future meetings Commission 3 had two meetings during the working week in Prague with 26 and 17 participants respectively from no less than 15 countries. The young female delegate from Belarus had travelled 24 hours by bus to participate in the Commission meeting.

The Commission was responsible for one of the Quo Vadis sessions. The session dedicated to Spatial Information Infrastructure was held as a panel discussion. The president of EUROGI Professor Ian Masser opened the session with a keynote on Developing Trends. The facilitator, Robin McLaren managed to involve the audience in lively discussions for more than 45 minutes.

Annual meeting in Athens

Spatial Information Management, Experiences and Visions for the 21st Century was the theme of the Commission 3 seminar and annual meeting in Athens, Greece from 4 to 7 October sponsored by Ktimatologio S.A. and the Technical Chamber of Greece. With 99 registered participants from 17 different countries the Greek organisers sponsored by Ktimatologio S.A. and the Technical Chamber of Greece were dealing with a real international event. As a special gesture students could attend the meeting without paying registration fee and the Greek host covered as well the registration fee as accommodation for two of the African participants.

In the light of the country reports and the other presentations on Spatial Information Management a list of statements on Experiences and Visions became an essential outcome. The list is available on the Commission homepage (http://fig3.boku.at).

Athens 2000 became a memorable Commission 3 event. The experiences confirmed that Spatial Information and Knowledge Management is a growth area for surveyors. At the same time it became clear for all of us that the country reports ensures the involvement of the delegates in the future work of the Commission.

Country reports

In Prague we introduced the concept Country Reports on Spatial Data Infrastructure. Till know we have had presentations from 12 different countries. The contributions from the various countries give on the one hand a standard of reference and on the other hand a valuable input to the Commission 3 Working Groups 1 and 2 dealing with National Spatial Infrastructure.


All information on commission activities including proceedings from the various arrangements and the country reports are or will be available on the Commission 3 homepage: http://fig3.boku.at.

Future activities

The annual meeting 2001 will be in Nairobi in connection with the conference Spatial Information for Sustainable Development. This conference is organised by the Institution of Surveyors of Kenya in co-operation with UNCHS (Habitat), Commission 3 and FIG Commissions 1, 2, 5, 7 and 9.

Working Groups

WG1 organised the Athens seminar in October 2000 and WG2 is preparing their investigations on SDI.

The Memorandum of Understanding signed between UNCHS and FIG includes a joint activity to extend the UNCHS Best Practice Database with experiences on Spatial Information Management through a project called: 'Facilitating spatial information and knowledge management for decision support in Urban Management in Countries in Transition and Developing Countries'.

WG2 had decided to go out with a questionnaire. After it became clear that another organisation had done something similar WG2 decided to base their investigations on existing data from country reports, the GSDI cookbook etc.

WG3 has proposed to analyse project experiences in Africa to generate the initial Best Practice examples of Spatial Information Management. In June the WG chair had meetings in Nairobi with Habitat to establish how WG3 could most effectively contribute to the UNCHS Best Practice Database; and to identify existing projects in Africa that could be used to generate the Spatial Information Best Practice.

The Newsletter

One issue of the joint Commission 3 and 7 Newsletter has been posted to more than 500 addresses round the world. Another issue was planned for distribution in December. It will show in first quarter of 2001.

Jes Ryttersgaard
Chair of FIG Commission 3 (Spatial Information Management)
Email: JR@kms.dk

28 January 2001

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