FIG XXII Congress in Washington, DC, 19-26 April 2002: 

Almost 4,000 participants attended biggest ever FIG Congress

4,000 Visitors from 90 countries - 470 speakers and 650 papers

The 22nd FIG Congress and 25th General Assembly attracted almost 4,000 participants to Washington, DC where this FIG four-yearly Congress was held at the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel. In spite of the tragedy of September 11, 2001 the number of participants was biggest ever and very close to the figure that the organisers expected. One reason for the success was that in conjunction to the FIG Congress both the American Congress on Surveying and Mapping ACSM - the hosting FIG member association and  ASPRS (American Society for Photogrammetry  and Remote Sensing) organised their national conferences. Also the other FIG American member association the Appraisal Institute was well presented in the programme. All technical sessions and most of the workshops were open for all participants. So the event offered an excellent opportunity for the American delegates to get information about the international trends in surveying and vice a versa.

At the opening ceremony the welcome address was given by Robert W. Foster, President of FIG. The keynote addresses were given by Dr. Anna K. Tibaijuka, Executive Director of UN-HABITAT and Mr. Jack Dangermond, President and Founder of ESRI.
Theirs addresses are available on this site:

The FIG Congress Prize 2002 was given to Mr George Oner Ogalo from Kenya for his presentation "GPS in Cadastres: A Case Study of Kenya".

450 papers from more than 60 countries

In the FIG technical programme more than 450 papers were presented. This meant that sometimes even more than 10 sessions were running in parallel. All papers have been published on the FIG web site. The ten technical Commissions of FIG were in charge for the high profile professional programme.

Extensive Exhibition 

At the technical exhibition 125 companies exhibit their instruments, software and latest achievements.

FIG General Assembly

55 member associations out of 88 attended the General Assembly. The figure could have been even bigger if all delegations could have get their visas in time.

Four new member associations were adopted, these are from Burkina Faso, Cameroon, Malaysia and Uruguay. The membership application from HKIES, Hong Kong, China was not adopted instead the two associations from Hong Kong, China were requested to form a national forum for international co-operation. 

Nepal and Mexico were adopted as new affiliate members. In addition the National Technical University of Athens joined as an Academic Members and Thales Navigation as a Corporate Member.

Working week 2003 was postponed to 2009. The Council is now negotiating for the venue and dates for the Working Week 2003. Its decision can be expected by the end of June 2002.

The General Assembly also recorded its thanks to the past Commission chairs who finished their successful term of office at the end of the Congress. New Commission Chairs were elected and their work plans adopted.

Mr. T. N. Wong from Hong Kong, China was elected as a  Vice President of FIG for 2003-2006. He is the first Vice President that is directly elected by the General Assembly following the new statutes. He will start his term of office 1 January 2003 in the new German Council. Hong Kong, China was also lucky to get to host the FIG Working Week 2007.

Memoranda of Understanding were adopted with UN FAO and UN-HABITAT and with sister associations ICA, ISPRS and IFHP.

The minutes of the General Assembly are available here.

FIG Foundation managed to collect US$ 50,000

The Fig Foundation organised its first fundraising dinner in Washington, DC. More than 50 delegates participated. In addition more than 30 delegates made a voluntary donation to the Foundation. In addition a fixed sum from each delegate was given to the Foundation.

The Foundation presented its first plaques of honour to the big donators: Platinum Plaque: Jack Dangermond, Silver Plaque to Congress Director Mary Clawson, and Bronze Plaques to Trimble Navigation Ltd. (US$ 2,000) and John Hohol (US$ 1,000). ESRI, a Corporate Member of FIG, donated 25 packages of software and training to universities worth of US$ 7,000,000. The decision of the universities will be made together between ESRI and FIG based on applications. Jack Dangermond also promised to donate US$ 25,000 to the Foundation if the other donations will match his bid.

Next Congress in Munich in 2006

Congress Director Mary Clawson and Deputy Congress Director John Hohol were extremely satisfied with the Congress when the delegates congratulated them at the closing party, organised by the Germans who at the same time welcomed all surveyors to Munich in August-September 2006. Mary Clawson therefore handed over the FIG banner to Marcus Wandinger, Congress Director 2006.

Picture Gallery 

You are able to get a bigger picture by clicking the picture.

The opening ceremony attracted all participants from 90 countries to the biggest ballroom at the Congress hotel.

Dr. Anna K. Tibaijuka, Executive Director of UN-HABITAT at the opening ceremony
Jack Dangermond, President of ESRI making his keynote address at the opening ceremony. 
President Robert W. Foster presented the Congress Prize to George Oner Ogalo who was not able to attend the opening ceremony. The prize was given to Mr. Humphrey Njuguna, Chair of the ISK, Kenya.
Dr. Anna K. Tibaijuka, UN-HABITAT and Robert W. Foster signed the new MoU between FIG and UN-HABITAT for 2002-2006.
55 Member Associations and almost 200 delegates participated the General Assembly that was open to all participants. In the front row Commission chairs who made a great work for the success of the Congress.
M. Claude Tapsoba, Secretary General of AGT-B from Burkina Faso together with President Foster.
Mr. Baburam Acharya, Director General of HMG Survey Department, Nepal gets the certificate of the affiliate membership from President Foster.
Mr. Eugene Rurangwa, Director of Lands & Land Registration and a new affiliate member of FIG makes his address at the General Assembly.
Ms. Alina Szczesniak received the plaque of Honorary President on behalf of  her father, Wladyslaw Surmacki, who was to be FIG President in 1942 but did not survive the war. 
Ms. Szczesniak addressed the General Assembly on this occasion.
Jan de Graeve, President of the International Institution for the History of Surveying and Measurement was appointed to an Honorary Member.
Vice Presidents Tom Kennie (to the right) and Holger Magel during the General Assembly.
T. N. Wong from HKIS, Hong Kong, China became the first Vice President of FIG elected directly by the General Assembly.
John Trinder, President of ISPRS and Robert Foster signed the MoU between the two sister associations.
Dr. Irene Wiese - von Ofen, President of the International Federation of Housing and Planning IFHP and Chair of the Habitat Professionals Forum signed a MoU on behalf of IFHP with President Foster.
New Commission chairs and members of the FIG Council 2003-2006.
The German Council that will take over from the US Council in January 2003 with the newly appointed Vice Presidents and ACCO representative Gerhard Muggenhuber.
Jack Dangermond, Mary Clawson, Holger Magel, President of the FIG Foundation and John Hohol with their FIG Foundation plaques.
Holger Magel and Jack Dangermond.
Holger Magel and Bryn Fosburgh, Trimle Navigation Ltd.
Mary Clawson and Holger Magel.
General Assembly attracted 55 member associations and several other members so that the meeting room was crowded during the two General Assembly sessions.
The General Assembly voted to have FIG Working Week 2007 in Hong Kong, China.
Commission Chairs 1998-2002 listening presentations at the General Assembly from right to left: John Parker, Kirsi Virrantaus and Jes Ryttersgaard.
Prof. Holger Magel, President Elect congratulates the new Commission Chairs 2002-2006 from right to left: Klaus Rürup, Pedro Cavero and Gerhard Muggenhuber. 
New Commission Chairs with their badges: from right: Adam Greenland, Matt Higgins, Svend Kold Johansen, Christiaan Lemmen (representing Paul van der Molen), Paul Lohmann, Stephen Yip and Philip Shearer.
The new Council that will take over the FIG administration at the end of the year was introduced. In the picture from left to right T.N. Wong, Marcus Wandinger, Ralf Schroth, Holger Magel and Andreas Drees.
President Elect Holger Magel making the report on behalf of the FIG Foundation that managed to collect US$ 50,000 to the Foundation in Washington, DC.
Congress Director Mary Clawson's last duty after the successful Congress was to hand over the FIG banner to Marcus Wandinger to be hanged again in Munich in 2006. Next year FIG will meet during the FIG Working Week and 125th Anniversary in Paris, France. 
Congress Director Mary Clawson and Director Markku Villikka at the closing reception.
Welcome to Munich in 2006.