As an international organisation ISPRS has to work with other NGOs and sister societies, and with intergovernmental organisations (IGOs). We have been active in both these areas during the past 2006. The main IGOs, which deal with geospatial information, are the United Nations (UN) and the Group on Earth Observations (GEO). We have long standing relations with the UN through the Regional Cartographic Conferences, the Office of Outer Space Affairs (OOSA) and the Economic Commission for Africa (ECA). During 2006 the Regional Conference for Asia Pacific took place and ISPRS was represented by 1stVice President John Trinder. President Ian Dowman attended the 49th meeting of the Committee on Peaceful uses of Outer Space, (COPUOS), organised by OOSA, and Secretary General Orhan Altan attended a meeting of the Science and Technology sub Committee of COPUOS, The Secretary General has also represented ISPRS on the 'Disaster Management International Space Coordination Organization' (DMISCO). Secretary General Altan contributed to a report published by FIG on the Contribution of the Surveying Profession to Disaster Risk Management, and to the setting up of "United Nations Platform for Space-based Information for Disaster Management and Emergency Response (SPIDER)". OOSA has supported ISPRS activities including the Geo-information for Disaster Management workshop in Goa. ISPRS is a member of ICSU, the International Council for Science and although there have been no meetings in 2006, we have participated though correspondence and through collaboration with the Geo Unions, (members of ICSU with an interest in Earth science.) ISPRS is also participating in the activities of the International Polar Pear.

GEO has now been operating for its first full year and ISPRS has been active through its committees and task teams and also through organising workshops on the Global Earth Observing System of Systems (GEOSS). This has been done in collaboration with IEEE and OGC: the first workshop was in South Africa in November 2005 and the second event with significant ISPRS involvement was in Goa in September. Further workshops and activities are arranged for 2007. In view of our active participation in GEO, ISPRS has scaled down activities within CEOS, although there is scope for individuals to represent ISPRS on the CEOS working groups, and volunteers will be welcomed.

The Joint Board of Geospatial Information Societies (JBGIS) comprising FIG, ICA, IHO, AIG, ISPRS, IMTA and ISCGM is the main vehicles for inter society collaboration. The Board met in Vienna in July, hosted by ISPRS, and had lengthy discussion on capacity building and decided to proceed on three fronts:

- organise an event in Africa

- to discuss co-operation with ITC on activities in Africa

- to approach politicians with an interest in Africa and stress the importance of capacity building issues in Africa and the importance of geospatial information in solving the problems of this continent and ask them to address the African leaders on the importance of these issues.

Activity is taking place on all of these topics.

The topic of strengthening national mapping agencies in Africa was also discussed.

There have been a number of joint activities with sister societies including the GEOSS workshops, the FIG and CIPA in Cyprus, President Ian Dowman has also attended meetings of sister societies, including the FIG Regional conference in Ghana and the FIG Congress. Members of Council have attended other international conferences and presented keynote addresses as representatives of ISPRS.

We have also welcomed representatives from other organizations to ISPRS events including ION and GEO at Commission I, and ICA at Commission II.

Ian Dowman

imageThis site has been developed by Reed Business for ISPRS