News in 2012

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Most of the Participants at the 2012 FIG Commission 7 Annual Meeting

FIG President CheeHai TEO joined FIG Commission 7 Delegates at its 2012 Annual Meeting in San Luis, Argentina. The annual event included a One-day International Symposium with the theme “Land Governance in South America and International Perspectives”.

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Participants at the Regional Conference

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Tango in Uruguay...

The 8th FIG Regional Conference titled "Surveying towards Sustainable Development" was held in Montevideo, Uruguay 26-29 November 2012 with more than 250 participants from all over Latin America and all other continents, altogether 33 countries. The successful Regional Conference in Uruguay proved that Latin America is a very interesting area both for the Surveying society and for hosting a conference.

The local host of the Regional Conference was Asociación de Agrimensores del Uruguay (AAU) who organised the conference in cooperation with FIG. The conference was co-sponsored by UN-HABITAT, OAS, and the World Bank.

The main focus both in the plenary sessions and the technical sessions were on the Latin American region and during the conference there were many professional  discussion within the different areas of surveying between participants from the region and from all over the world.


Very special greeting for President CheeHai TEO

FIG President made another working visit to Abuja, Nigeria between 20 and 21 November 2012 as part of the lead-up to the 2013 FIG Working Week. During the visit, apart from continuing the discussion with the Nigerian Institution of Surveyors on their preparation, President CheeHai TEO delivered the 30th Annual Olumide Memorial Lecture on 20th November 2012.

HKIS President, Ms Serena LAU

The Hong Kong Institute of Surveyors held their annual dinner on the evening of 6 November 2012 at the Grand Ballroom of the Grand Hyatt Hong Kong. Ms Serena LAU, HKIS President welcomed members and guests to what was a grand evening.

Most of the Participants at the 2012 FIG Commission 7 Annual Meeting

FIG Commission 7 held its 2012 Annual Meeting in San Luis, Argentina. The annual event included a One-day International Symposium with the theme “Land Governance in South America and International Perspectives”. FIG President CheeHai TEO joined FIG commission 7 delegates.

Acting Surveyor General of Brunei Darussalam, Awang Haji Ali Bakar bin Kassim

The Survey Department, Ministry of Development Negara Brunei Darussalam, celebrated its 60th Anniversary with a one-day seminar. The theme of the Diamond Jubilee Celebratory Seminar was “Geospatial for Sustainable Development”. FIG President CheeHai TEO was invited and delivered the keynote at the opening segment of the Seminar.
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On 15 November 2012 the Economist awarded successful innovators. Jack Dangermond, president of the Environmental Systems Research Institute, ESRI received the computing and telecommunications award, together with John Hanke, vice-president of product management at Google.

FIG Congratulates its Platinum Member, ESRI!

  • Newly launched: is an initiative from FIG corporate member Geomares Publishing. Geo-matching is the independent product comparison website for professional hard- and software for geomatics and adjacent fields. The website leads you through the maze of specifications and gives the opportunity to compare products of different producers, read up on reviews given by users, in order to reach a balanced judgment before buying.

    For more information about Geomatching please visit:

    On1 November 2012 the 'Land Administration Domain Model (LADM)' was approved as an official International ISO Standard . This is a milestone in the development of land administration systems.The proposal for this standard was submitted by FIG to ISO almost five years ago.
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  • Preparations for the FIG Working Week 2013 - FIG Office visits Abuja Nigeria

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    FIG Office visits Nigerian Institution of Surveyors

    FIG Working Week 2013 is not far away and the very active members of Nigerian Institution of Surveyors are working intensely to organise an exciting and successful Working Week. FIG Office visited Abuja to coordinate the preparations and also got a chance to meet the Surveyor General of the Federation and SURCON.
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  • Denmark releases its digital raw material - Meeting with The Danish National Survey and Cadaster 11 September 2012

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    President Teo visits The Danish National Survey and Cadaster

    The Danish National Survey and Cadaster, KMS has initiated an agreement that improves and links public registers of basic data and makes data available to the private sector. Once the public authorities have tidied up, merged all data and stopped parallel registration, annual savings in administration is estimated to amount to DKK 260 mio (35 Mio EUR) in 2020. Basic data includes private addresses, companies' business registration numbers, or the cadastral numbers of real properties.
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  • NSDI and INSPIRE Days and Cartography and Geoinformation Conference
    25-29 September 2012, Zagreb, Croatia

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    The Conference was supported by FIG, and held in the Hotel International in Zagreb. A wide range of topics and distinguished keynote speakers guaranteed interesting presentations. One of the presenters was Dr. Chryssy Alex. Potsiou, FIG Vice-president.
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  • IV International Training Course in Topography for Young Surveyors
    17-28 September 2012, Madrid, Spain

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    Eva-Maria Unger, FIG Young Surveyors being interviewed after Opening Ceremony (image courtesy of Lilia D'Alesio)

    Fifty young surveyors from 17 countries participated in this year’s training course. Areas of study included topographical and geometric surveys, production of large-scale orthoimages, GNSS surveys, geodetic reference systems, RTK, photogrammetric and LIDAR surveys, geo-referencing of cadastral maps, remote sensing and structural monitoring and deformation surveys.
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  • Sixth World Urban Forum, 2-7 September, 2012, Naples, Italy

    Dr. Joan Clos, Executive Director of UN-Habitat

    The theme for the Forum was “the urban future”. In his opening speech, UN-Habitat Executive Director Dr. Joan Clos said the Forum provided UN-HABITAT with the perfect chance to listen to what the stakeholders had to say and that it is the responsibility of his agency to relay to governments what the participants wanted done. FIG Young Surveyors Network through Kate Fairlie and Eva-Maria Unger actively participated in the Forum.
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  • Second Session of the United Nations Committee of Expert on
    Global Geospatial Information Management, New York, USA, 13-15 August 2012

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    The second session of the UNCE-GGIM was convened at the United Nations Headquarters in New York

    UNCE-GGIM was established to be the official United Nations consultative mechanism on place, locality and geography. UNCE-GGIM plays a leading role in setting the agenda for the development of global geospatial information, while promoting its use to meet key global challenges. In his opening remarks, United Nations Under-Secretary-General for Economic and Social Affairs, Mr. HongBo WU said that understanding and analysing geospatial information has become a key driver of competition and underpins new waves of productivity growth, innovation and services.
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  • FIG President meets FIG Members from the Russian Federation
    1st – 3rd August, 2012, Moscow, Russia

    Some of the participants at the session hosted by the Moscow University of Geodesy and Cartography.

    The International Federation of Surveyors has six members from within the Russian Federation, in all four membership categories. The Federal Agency for Geodesy and Cartography (ROSREESTR) and the Non-Commercial Partnership of Cadastral Engineers are Member Associations, Moscow University of Geodesy and Cartography and the State University of Land Use Planning are Academic Members, the Siberian State Academy of Geodesy is an Affiliate Member and Meridian+, a Corporate Member. Together, they invited President CheeHai TEO to Moscow and to interact with FIG’s members from the Russian Federation.  Read more....
  • American Congress of Surveying and Mapping Looks Ahead
    ACSM Annual Conference, 21st – 24th July 2012, Manchester Grand Hyatt San Diego, United States

    Jack Dangermond, President ESRI with John Hohol [right], President FIG Foundation.

    This year’s American Congress of Survey and Mapping (ACSM) Annual Conference is also the ESRI Survey Summit, organised by and co-located within ESRI’s Annual User Conference at the San Diego Convention Centre, California. The ESRI User Conference annually attracts a huge number of participants and this year is no different, approximately 15,000 participants from all over. Read more....

President Fausto Savoldi at the opening ceremony.

Roma Sinfonietta.

President CheeHai Teo making his opening address.
FIG Foundation Dinner.

Conference dinner.

The FIG Working Week Knowing to manage the territory, protect the environment, evaluate the cultural heritage and the XXXV General Assembly was held in Rome, Italy from 6 to 10 May 2012. Consiglio Nazionale Geometri e Geometri Laureati, CNGeGL, was the local host of this year's Working Week. The main partner of the Working Week was FAO including a full day workshop jointly organised by FIG and FAO and a visit to FAO headquarters. A full day program was also organised together with the Global Land Tool Network, GLTN, in co-operation with UN-HABITAT and GLTN professional partners and introducing grass root organisations. CNGeGL organised a well received invited session on Professional Women in Surveying. To the Working Week were attached some special events: the 1st FIG Young Surveyors Conference; IAG/FIG Commission 5/ICG Workshop and History Workshop.
The Working Week turned out to be the biggest FIG Working Week ever if counted by number of participants. More than 1,500 participants from 96 countries attended. The technical programme comprised of more than 100 technical sessions, workshops and special forums. Total number of presented papers was almost 500. In total 750 abstracts were submitted to the conference. The Working Week was held at the first class venue Rome Cavalieri hotel offering both excellent facilities and outstanding view over the eternal city.
The social events starting from the opening concert to the FIG Foundation Dinner and concert and the conference dinner at Villa Miani surpassed any former event. Read more...

FIG Council at the General Assembly.
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New Vice Presidents: Bruno Razza (Italy, left) and Pengfei Chen (China) after the elections.

FIG General Assembly 2012 was held during the Working Week in Rome, Italy. In total 71 different member associations were present at the two sessions of the General Assembly and in total 350 delegates attended the General Assembly sessions. The first session was attended by 66 member associations and 65 the second session out of which 58 were allowed to vote. The participants represented all membership categories as well as observers.
The main item on this year’s agenda was the election of two Vice Presidents for 2013-2016 and election or appointment of Commission Chairs Elect for 2013-2014 who under normal conditions will become Commission chairs for 2015-2018. Read more...

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Young surveyors conference.
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Kate Fairlie making the welcome address.

More than 120 Young Surveyors from 40 countries joined the first FIG Young Surveyors Conference held in Rome, Italy, 4-5 May 2012. The network manifests across social media, which was prominent during this event.
The Young Surveyors Conference created a platform for young surveying professionals to explore common issues and identify future opportunities. The ambition was to increase young surveyor participation in the FIG Commissions, to provide with a voice for young surveyors in the future of the profession and  FIG, and to offer a more informal platform for presenting than at the traditional FIG conferences. Read more....

The participants at the seminar

The IAG, (International Association of Geodesy), FIG Commission 5 and ICG (International Committee on GNSS) held a technical seminar prior to the Working Week, on 4-5 May 2012 with 42 active participants. UNOOSA (United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs) generously sponsored 4 delegates to attend this seminar. The two days included presentations and discussions. 
  • Land Governance in a Rapidly Changing Environment - World Bank Conference, Washington, 23-27 April 2012

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    Mr Justin Lin, Senior Vice President and Chief Economist, World Bank and Prof. Paul Collier, Professor of Economics, Oxford University at the Opening Session

    Within this year’s Conference was the joint World Bank – FIG Segment, Spatial Enabling Governments and Societies for Sustainable Land Administration and Management, renamed as SEGS (Spatially Enabled Government and Societies). The Workshop addressed four issues: Triple A land administration: from concept to implementation; Approaches to lower-cost land administration through spatial enablement; Potential and challenges of spatial enablement of land administration; and Spatial enablement to sustainably support the continuum of land rights.  Read more...
  • FIG Regional Conference – 26-29 November 2012 in Montevideo, Uruguay

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    President Teo visits Asociación de Agrimensores del Uruguay (A.A.U.)

    The 8th FIG Regional Conference is decided to be held on 26-29 November 2012 at Radisson Montevideo in Uruguay. FIG is happy to announce a Regional conference in Central America and are looking forward to many participants from the Central American region as well as international participants. President CheeHai Teo and Markku Villikka from FIG Office visited Asociación de Agrimensores del Uruguay (AAU) November 2011 to start the planning of the conference. The Regional Conference is organised jointly by AAU and FIG. Read more...
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FIG Working Week 2012 "Knowing to manage the territory, protect the environment, evaluate the cultural heritage" was held in Rome 6-10 May 2012 at the Rome Cavalieri Hotel. More than 1,500 participants from 100 countries attended this main FIG conference. The conference was organised by Consiglio Nazionale Geometri e Geometri Laureati (CNGeGL) and FIG. The main partner is FAO. The keynote speakers included Alexander Mueller, Assistant-Director General of FAO.

FIG organized the first Young Surveyors Conference 4-5 May in Rome allowing young professionals easy attendance to the Working Week - more than 120 participants from 40 countries accepted the invitation.  FIG and IAG organized a joint technical seminar on reference frame in practice 4-5 May and a traditional history workshop was held 4 May.

  • FIG General Assembly 2012 - Rome, Italy, 6 and 10 May 2012 – Agenda

Rome Cavalieri in Rome waiting for FIG General Assembly.
The FIG General Assembly will be held 6 and 10 May in Rome in conjunction to the FIG Working Week 2012. The main issues on the agenda will be election of two Vice Presidents (2013-2016) and election of Commission Chairs Elect (2013-2014). The General Assembly will also decide on the hosts of Working Week 2015 and Working Week 2016. The agenda is now available and the FIG Office has sent an invitation and hard copy of the agenda without appendices to all members.

The first FIG Young Surveyors Conference will be held in conjunction with the FIG Working Week in Rome, Italy. The aim of the conference is to create a platform for young surveying professionals to network, to develop a vision for the future of the Young Surveyors Conference and to provide FIG Commissions with ideas on how best to integrate young professionals in the work of FIG. These visions will be presented in a special session of the Working Week. FIG and CNGeGL encourage young professionals to attend. The participation in FIG Young Surveyors Conference also allows easy attendance to the FIG Working week at student fee. Read more...
  • Nigerian Surveyors Welcome All Surveyors to FIG Working Week 2013 in Abuja -Abuja, Nigeria, 6-10 March 2012

    NIS President Yakubu Maikano and President Teo together with the Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives Emeka Ihedioha.

    FIG President CheeHai Teo and FIG Director Markku Villikka visited Nigeria to prepare and discuss with the local organisers the arrangements for the FIG Working Week 2013 that will be held in Abuja 6-10 May 2013. During their visit they met with the three Nigerian member associations, representatives from different public institutions and several local surveyors. The local interest and support to the first FIG Working Week to be held in Sub Saharan Africa is huge. It is expected that 2,000-3,000 participants will attend this main FIG conference next year. Read more ...
  • FIG Annual Review 2011
The FIG Annual Review 2011 is now available (32 pages, 3.66 MB) as a .pdf-file. Hard copies will be mailed to all members together with the minutes from the General Assembly in Rome. To receive your personal copy, please contact the FIG office, email:

Daniel Roberge and Vice President of OGEC Mr. Joseph Ngassa K. on the Cameroun national radio network.

The Ordre des géomètres experts du Cameroun (OGEC) organised an international event to promote the profession of land surveyors in this Central African country. Themes like cadastre and land property in Cameroun and in foreign countries, standards, young surveyors, were presented and discussed. Our colleagues from Cameroun had also the opportunity to present national projects that will improve land infrastructures in their country: the national geodetic network and a pilot cadastre project. Read more ...

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RICS Global President SeeLian Ong, President CheeHai Teo and RICS Chief Executive Sean Tomkins

The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors, RICS a member association of FIG made history by having its International Governing Council Meeting in Beijing, China PR, the first meeting ever outside Europe. Together with this historic event, an international conference was convened. The conference had participants deliberating and discussing the profession’s fitness for the future, the theme of the two-day event. The conference had a number of sessions including lively panel discussions covering economy, property investment, investment infrastructure, property market outlooks, affordable housing, valuation standards as well as issues related to urbanization and building cities of the future, impact of technologies and innovation and that of land tenure and the vibrant land market. Read more ...

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Plenary session at the Symposium

The premise for the symposium is that spatial information and data add valuable dimensions to governance decision making processes and supports societies’ involvement in the governance process in the pursuit of economic, social, political and environmental objectives. It was clear that spatial enablement of government and societies are desirable, and that these desires are not only contemporary but have been trumpeted by geomatics professionals as needs in the governance decision making process, for decades Read more ...

Gerardus Mercator, born at Rupelmonde (present day Belgium) on 5th March 1512 was a remarkable man, a man in his times and provided solutions to his times. He was a surveyor, a cartographer, an engraver, an instrument maker who is best remembered by the Profession for the map projection that bears his name till this day, the Mercator Projection. It is fitting that the Council of European Geodetic Surveyors (CLGE) has chosen to celebrate the First “Day of the European Surveyor and Geoinformation” on the 500th anniversary of Mercator’s birth, on 5th March 2012 in Brussels, Belgium. Read more ...
  • Securing Land Rights for All - Strengthening Partnerships - Global Land Tool Network Partners Meeting, 15-16 November 2011, UNON, Nairobi, Kenya

The fourth GLTN Partners Meeting as convened by UN-HABITAT in Nairobi, Kenya on 15 & 16 November 2011 and was followed by a further two days of what is known as “Learning Exchange”. The meeting had a theme “Strengthening Partnerships: Sustaining a Paradigm Shift towards designing, developing and implementing pro-poor land tools and approaches”. Read more ...

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The Twin Tower in Kuala Lumpur was the backdrop for the FIG Council meeting.

The FIG Council had its first face-to-face meeting this year in Kuala Lumpur; Malaysia 12-13 February 2012. The meeting was organised in conjunction to the UNRCC-PCGIAP International Symposium on Spatially Enabled Government and Society and a one day expert group meeting. The Council confirmed nominations for elections and candidates for Working Week 2015 and 2016 for decision of the General Assembly in Rome in May. Read more...

The FIG Foundation will be providing research grants of up to 20,000 euros spread over two years. Applicants should be based in a surveying/geomatics academic or research programme in a country listed by the World Bank as a low-income, lower-middle or upper-middle income economy, have an established record of published research - at least two articles in good quality internationally recognised peer reviewed journals serves as a useful guideline, and have experience in managing postgraduate students.
Guidelines for FIG Foundation Academic Research Grants

  • Commission 4 Working Group 4 Workshop in Nigeria

    FIG Commission 4 (Hydrography) Working Group 4.5 (Hydrography in Africa) organised workshop on Hydrography Awareness in Africa, Kogi State, Nigeria, 24-26 October 2011. Read the full report...

  • FIG General Assembly 2012 - Call for nominations for Vice Presidents and Commission Chairs Elect - deadline for nominations has passed 2 January 2012

The FIG General Assembly will elect two new Vice Presidents at its meeting in Rome, Italy 6-10 May 2012 for term of office 2013-2016. The General Assembly will also elect a Chair Elect to each of the 10 Commissions for term of office 2013-2014. The appointed Chair Elect will normally be elected as the Chair of the Commission at the FIG Congress 2014 for the period 2015-2018. Closing date for nominations has passed 2 January 2012.

German Initiative on recruitment of Students in Geodesy and Surveying

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Many countries experience that young people have a lack of knowledge in the field of Surveying and Geodesy and face a decrease in the number of student. A German initiative by DVW has resulted in a web site which is now also published in English. The web site gives a broad overview about Geodesy and its diverse disciplines. Furthermore it provides rich information regarding the study courses (focused on Germany). Have a look at the web site and be inspired how you could also promote the profession in your country.

August 2012

New general director at the National Agency for Cadastre and Land Registration Romania (ANCPI)

Mr. Marius Arthur URSU has been apppinted new general director at the National Agency for Cadastre and Land Registration (ANCPI).

June 2012


The Voluntary Guidelines on the Governance of Tenure were endorsed by the 38th (Special) Session of the Committee on World Food Security (CFS).

The Committee:

  • Expressed its gratitude to the Chair of the OEWG, its Members and Participants, as well as the Secretariat, for the successful conclusions of the negotiations, which had been conducted in a transparent and participatory way and in a spirit of understanding;
  • Endorsed the Voluntary Guidelines;
  • Noted that, according to their title, the Guidelines are voluntary and are not legally binding.
  • Encouraged all stakeholders to promote, make use of and support the implementation of the Guidelines when formulating strategies, policies and programmes on food security, nutrition, agriculture and the tenure of land, fisheries and forests;
  • Pursuant to CFS Reform document (CFS:2009/2 Rev.2), paragraph 21, and CFS Rules of Procedure (CFS:2011/9 Rev.1), rule X(1), decided to transmit the Guidelines to the governing bodies of FAO, WFP and IFAD;
  • Pursuant to CFS Reform document (CFS:2009/2 Rev.2), paragraph 21, and CFS Rules of Procedure (CFS:2011/9 Rev.1), rule X(4), decided to request the United Nations General Assembly, through the Economic and Social Council, to further endorse the VGGT and ensure their wide dissemination to all relevant UN Bodies and Agencies;
  • Requested FAO to ensure that the Guidelines are included as a priority in the new Strategic Framework that FAO is developing and in relevant work programmes.

August 2012

FIG Congratulates The Bureau of Land Management, USA with their 200 year anniversary

The Bureau of Land Management, USA, who is Affiliate member of FIG commemorated 200 years of the General Land Office, its predecessor, on 25th April 2012. The General Land Office was first established on April 25, 1812. The commemoration was held at BLM's Eastern States Office outside Washington DC. FIG was represented by Chair of FIG Foundation John Hohol and FIG President CheeHai Teo together with BLM's Chief Cadastral Surveyor, Don Buhler.

May 2012

Real Estate Valuation Training Nepal

Seven weeks 'Real Estate Valuation Training' programme was conducted by Nepal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (NICS), who is a FIG Member Association, in collaboration with Purwanchal University Geomatic Institute of Technology from 14 March to 30 April 2012. Read more...