24th FIG General Assembly, Seoul 2001

Appendix to item 15.1

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



FIG has organised its co-operation with international organisations in two ways. An example of multilateral co-operation is the co-operation with other professional surveying organisations (former IUSM) which is now organised through informal meetings. Another example is the Habitat Professionals Forum that is a coalition of professional associations that are jointly together with UNCHS (Habitat) implementing the Habitat Agenda. The main focus in FIG is, however, to increase bilateral co-operation formalised via Memoranda of Understanding.

FIG has previously made memoranda of understanding with ICEC, CIB and FIABCI in addition to the UN co-operation. After the General Assembly in Prague FIG has signed a MoU with the International Society for Mine Surveying (ISM) and prepared a similar agreement with the International Association of Geodesy (IAG). Both these MoU forwarded to the General Assembly for adoption in Seoul. FIG is prepared to make such bilateral agreements of co-operation also with other professional associations firstly with ICA and ISPRS. Co-operation with IHO will also be reviewed.

Joint Board of Surveying Societies

After the International Union for Surveying and Mapping (IUSM) was dissolved in 1999, it was agreed that the international surveying and mapping societies would meet in conjunction with the ISPRS 2000 meeting in Amsterdam, Netherlands to discuss means for co-operation. Vice President Christian Andreasen attended the meeting in August, 2000 on behalf of FIG. The meeting was attended by representatives of ISPRS (International Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing), ICA (International Cartographic Association), IAG (International Association of Geodesy), IHO (International Hydrographic Organization), IGU (International Geographical Union) and FIG.

It was agreed that there would be no formal structure as was attempted with IUSM nor will there be any dues. The societies agreed that formal cooperation would be through bilateral arrangements. The societies are to exchange journals between all Presidents and Secretaries General. Societies agree to a "free license" for copying materials published in newsletters. For publication articles, editors shall seek permission to reprint. It has been proposed that the Presidents/Secretaries General meet annually in conjunction with a meeting of the participating societies. Each society would be responsible for its costs of attendance with two representatives accredited to attend the Congress. The next meeting will be hosted by IAG in Budapest, Hungary in September 2001. FIG has yet to decide if it will participate in the annual meetings or if it may simply coordinate through bilateral arrangements. This issue was preliminary discussed at the Bureau meeting in Providence in December but the final decision has been postponed to Korea. FIG, however, will in any case participate the next meeting in Budapest.

Habitat Professionals Forum

The Habitat Professionals Forum was established in 1999 and put on the road as a repetitive phenomenon under the auspices of UNCHS (Habitat) on the initiative of International Society of City and Regional Planners (IsoCaRP), International Federation of Housing and Planning (IFHP), International Union of Architects (UIA), FIG, Centre for African Settlement Studies and Development CASSAD and Arabian Urban Development Institute AUDI. The Forum was organized under the auspices of UNCHS (Habitat) with the enthusiastic support of Dr. Klaus Töpfer, then Ag. Executive Director of UNCHS and presently United Nations Under-Secretary-General and Director-General of the United Nations Office at Nairobi and is now supported by Mrs. Anna K. Tibaijuka, the new Executive Director of UNCHS (Habitat).

The forum is explicitly aimed at interchange between professionals in the field and the government of the Habitat Centre. It organises a direct orientation of the Forum towards the UN work. It monitors the implementation of the Habitat Agenda. Professionals from different countries, working directly for the improvement of urban living conditions, and influencing decision making in their home situations, will be able to learn from each other here, support each other and be given a common reference, to strengthen their position. It should help the Habitat Agenda to follow the spontaneous and autonomous dynamics in our societies through time and contribute to making it really living instrument for progress.

The work of the Forum is managed through its Steering Committee where FIG is represented by the Director, FIG office. The Steering Committee meets annually once or twice. The latest meeting was held in January 2001 in The Hague. The main topic of this meeting was the arrangements for the three parallel sessions that the Forum will organise in conjunction to the UN Special Session on Istanbul+5 in New York in June 2001. The themes will be the security of tenure, urban governance and financing. Prof. Holger Magel will be the keynote speaker at the dialogue on the security of tenure and Robert Foster will be the rapporteur at the same discussion. More information about the Forum and activities during Istanbul+5 can be found on the Forum’s web site www.habitatforum.org hosted by FIG.

International Society for Mine Surveying (ISM)

At the Advisory Committee of Commission Officers (ACCO) meeting in Prague it was agreed to proceed with a Memorandum of Understanding with the International Society for Mine Surveying (ISM) and to prepare a draft of agreement with the aim to sign it during the ISM Congress in Krakow in September 2000, to which ISM invited the President to represent FIG.

When preparing the MoU it became obvious that there is lot of issues where FIG has something to learn from ISM. In addition to various general aspects of surveying at surface and underground levels, there are undoubtedly specific techniques where ISM has developed special competence and experience in this particular field. These could be of interest for other applications in engineering surveys. Conversely, in addition to the existing links and contributions (for instance via Prof. Adam Chrzanowski who is active in both FIG and ISM working groups), special surveying and monitoring techniques used in other engineering problems (including industrial and scientific applications) might be of interest for ISM.

The MoU was agreed at the Presidium meeting of ISM 4 September 2000 and it was immediately signed by Prof. Jerzy Chwastek, President of ISM, and Robert Foster, President of FIG. At the opening ceremony of the Congress, President Foster was given the opportunity to give a welcome address to the ISM colleagues, in which he expressed the natural motivations and mutual benefits of this co-operation. Dr. Michel Mayoud, Chairman of Commission 6, was also there for first technical contacts. He has also been attending the ISM congress and was appointed later by the Bureau as the FIG focal point for the contacts with ISM.

International Association of Geodesy (IAG)

Already before IUSM was disbanded FIG decided to develop bilateral agreements of co-operation with the former IUSM members and other sister associations. This principle was confirmed again by the FIG General Assembly and the FIG Bureau in Prague in May 2000.

At the FIG Advisory Committee of Commission Officers (ACCO) meeting the procedure and priority list of these agreements was discussed and agreed in Prague in May 2000. The Commission officers considered the Memoranda of Understanding to be important and most often the International Association of Geodesy (IAG) was mentioned to be the first that the formal agreement of co-operation should be signed with.

In FIG the role of IAG has been described as scientific organisation while FIG more as a link between the scientists and practitioners. Experience show that many active people in the field of geodesy are active both in IAG and in FIG. Annually there are several events that are organised and co-sponsored by both associations or their working groups.

The MoU is prepared to confirm this co-operation and develop it forward as well as record some principles on the co-operation. The MoU is divided into a long-term co-operation agreement and to action list that will be updated in discussions between the Secretary General of IAG and the Director, FIG office. More information about IAG is available on web site: http://www.gfy.ku.dk/~iag/.

The draft MoU was prepared in early March and agreed to be forwarded for adoption of the both organisations during spring 2001.

International Cost Engineering Council (ICEC)

The co-operation between FIG and ICEC is mainly organised through the ad hoc Commission on construction economics. In addition FIG and ICEC are starting their co-operation with UNCHS (Habitat) in affordable housing for the very poor settlements in Africa.

International Research Council for Building Studies and Documentation (CIB)

Based on the Memorandum of Understanding between FIG and International Research Council for Building Studies and Documentation (CIB) the associations have started a joint project to identify performance indicators for urban sustainability. The two co-ordinators of the project are Stephen Brown from RICS (UK) and Prof. Peter Dale from FIG, who are now looking for interested persons to participate into the project.

The overall objective of the working group is to help bring about a common understanding, acceptance and use among all parties to the urban development process as to the appropriate performance indicators to be used for assessing and measuring urban sustainability. These shall be considered in the context of national, regional, local, organisation and project levels.

In this context, it is viewed as being of particular importance to encourage and facilitate effective communication between and within the different levels of decision-making, from the policy level to the operational level.

The project will have the following output: Summary report of findings related to The Benchmark of current practices (2001); Draft specification of desirable set of performance indicators (two sets – one for change, one for performance) (2002); Report of findings on Identification of barriers/values/drivers/etc for change (2002); and Final Report on Best practice guidelines and presentation at Conferences (2003).

FIG Office

6 March 2001

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