FIG Annual Review

FIG Annual Review 2000


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Review on the FIG activities in 2000

President's Address

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Robert W. Foster
President of the International Federation of Surveyors

Year 2000 was a turning point in the history of the International Federation of Surveyors, FIG. The General Assembly decided in Prague, Czech Republic, on the principles of the new governance model of the Federation. The main issue in this process will be a democratic and fully elected Council with a continuity in administration and policies. This work was then followed by preparations of the detailed statutes and internal rules both by the Task Force on the Future Governance of FIG and by the Bureau in discussions with member associations. The decision of the General Assembly is a natural result in completing the long process that started with the establishment of the permanent office in Copenhagen in the beginning of 1999. The endorsement of the new statutes will take place in Seoul in May 2001.

Much work, however, is required before the new governance model is in full operation by January 2007. After adoption of the new governance model the structure of the commissions and permanent institutions still needs discussion. The Bureau is convinced that the new governance model will support the multicultural approach in the administration of the Federation.

The highlights of the past year have been, in addition to the highly successful working week in Prague, the increased number of regional joint commission events that show the way to regional activities within FIG.

FIG Working Week in Historical Prague

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The opening ceremony of the FIG Working Week 2001 was held at the Bethlehem Chapel, the Ceremonial Hall of the Czech Technical University in the historic centre of Prague.

The FIG working week and 23rd General Assembly took place in Prague, Czech Republic 22–26 May 2000. 42 member associations attended the first meeting and 46 member associations the second meeting, which is among the highest figures in the FIG history outside the congresses. The seminar Quo Vadis and the General Assembly were arranged at the National House of Vinohrady. The recently renovated house from the 1890s offered good facilities both for the meetings and the technical exhibition. The opening ceremony was held at the Bethlehem Chapel in the old town of Prague. Prague offered unique historical surroundings for
social events and technical tours, as well. The conference attracted more than 330 delegates from 47 countries.

The Mayor of Prague, together with Vice President Jerome and Mrs. Nancy Ives. The City of Prague hosted a reception to the head of delegations in the Old Town of Prague behind the famous clock tower.

The General Assembly, chaired by Vice President Jerome C. Ives, was the first under the US Bureau that took over the administration of FIG in November 1999.

The General Assembly adopted the FIG work plan for 2000–2003. The focus of the work plan is in activating member associations, supporting commission activities, continuing co-operation with the UN agencies and expanding the membership especially in Latin and South America. One of the main tasks will be to implement the new governance structure of the Federation.

The General Assembly approved the principles of the new governance structure for the Federation. This includes that the Bureau will be replaced by a Council that shall consist of a President and five Vice Presidents already in the beginning of 2001. The new structure will be taken in full operation 1.1.2007.

The General Assembly further decided to establish two new Task forces: one to review the Commission, Task force and Permanent Institution structure and the other one on Cultures and Languages in FIG.

The General Assembly further adopted the Bathurst Declaration on Land Administration for Sustainable Development and endorsed its recommendations and the recommendations on the development of the FIG relationship to the United Nations. In addition, the new Memorandum of Understanding between UNCHS (Habitat) and FIG was ratified.

Work Plan 2000–2003

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The Bureau had its meeting in Providence in December 2000. Vice Presidents Charles Challstrom and Jerome Ives and Deputy Congress Director John Hohol discussing the future strategies of the Federation.

The past year was the first for implementation of the current FIG work plan adopted by the General Assembly in Prague.

The Bureau has identified more than 40 specific goals to implement the theme of the current Bureau "Advancing the Global Role of Surveying". The work plan recognizes that the member organizations are the heart of FIG. A major focus of the plan is to be implementing mechanisms for increasing participation by member organizations in FIG activities, and informing the member organizations of FIG and other international surveying activities.

Another major objective of our term of office involves the financial condition of FIG. Now that FIG has been established as a legal entity it is no longer necessary to close the financial books at the end of every Bureau, only to begin the next Bureau with no available funds. We have identified as specific tasks to develop a long-term financial strategy for FIG, and to initiate and fund a reserve account. The future vitality of FIG depends on a sound financial footing; it is the intention of this Bureau to achieve that condition and we are making good progress toward this objective.

A third major objective of the 2000–2003 Work Plan is to increase membership within under-represented regions; especially the Caribbean and Central and South America. It is also our intention to increase corporate membership.

The Bureau has begun implementation of its work plan – with the help of member associations and the ten technical commissions.

United Nations Relations

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Dr. Klaus Töpfer and Markku Villikka signed a new MoU between Habitat and FIG during the First Prep. Com of Istanbul+5 in Nairobi.

FIG has for several years had close co-operation with the United Nations and several of its agencies, especially UNCHS (Habitat), FAO and Commission on Sustainable Development. The participation of FIG representatives to the UN Regional Cartographic Conferences has been valuable and much appreciated by those organizations.

During 2000 FIG participated the 1st Preparatory Committee for the UN General Assembly on the Overall Review and Appraisal of the Habitat Agenda (Istanbul+5) in Nairobi in May 2000. FIG was further invited to participate in the Urban 21 Conference in Berlin last July and the Experts Group meeting in Västerås, Sweden in November 2000 to prepare the draft Declaration on "Cities and other Human Settlements in the new Millennium" and review the implementation of the Habitat Agenda for the UN Special Session on Istanbul +5.

FIG participated in the UN Regional Cartographic Conferences for Asia and the Pacific in April 2000 in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia resulting in several new initiatives, e.g., in new events for the Mekong region in February 2003.

FIG was further invited to present the Bathurst Declaration on Land Administration for Sustainable Development at the 8th Session of the Commission on Sustainable Development in New York, April 2000.

Sister Organisations

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Co-operation between FIG and the other international professional surveying organisations has been developed on bilateral basis since IUSM was disbanded in 1999. The main goal with bilateral agreements is to create co-operation that is more closely related to commission activities and provides more deliverables.

The first Memorandum of Understanding with sister organisations was signed with the International Society for Mine Surveying (ISM) in Krakow during the ISM Congress in September 2000. A similar Memorandum of Understanding was prepared with the International Association of Geodesy (IAG) for adoption at the General Assembly in Seoul, 2001.

The UNCHS (Habitat) Professionals Forum includes architects, planners and surveyors with the goal to combine several professions to implement the Habitat Agenda. As a result of this co-operation, which was initiated by several associations and UNCHS (Habitat) in 1999, FIG was invited to make a presentation at the Urban 21 Conference in Berlin in July 2000. FIG is also represented in the Steering Committee of the Professionals Forum.

Commission Activities

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The joint Commissions 2, 3, 5 and 7 Seminar in Malta in September was a new initiative to expand the regional activities of the Federation.

The technical and professional work of the Federation is performed by the ten technical commissions and their activities. The Bureau is pleased with the many activities of the commissions when organizing their own events but especially with the increased number of joint events. Commissions 2, 3, 5 and 7 are examples of commissions that implement not only their own work plans and policies but also the FIG policy. A good example was the Commission 2 seminar organized in Rosario, Argentina in October representing the Federation and promoting FIG in South America and Latin America. Commission 3 on spatial information management has started its arrangements for organizing, jointly with UNCHS (Habitat) and the Institution of Surveyors of Kenya, a larger conference in Nairobi to be held in October 2001. That will be the biggest FIG commission-driven event ever in Africa. This event is also a good example of the joint commission activities that have increased remarkably over the years. Another good example was the Symposium for the Mediterranean area organized in September 2000 in Malta to which five commissions took part under Commission 5 leadership while The Land Surveyors Society, Malta made the practical arrangements.

Commission 2 Seminar in Rosario, Argentina, was the first FIG Commission organized event in South America and a good start for the membership expansion in Latin America. FIG representatives Stig Enemark (to left), John Parker and Pedro Cavero at the plenary session.

The Commissions are also active in organizing their own annual events. Last year Commission 7 on cadastre and land management organized its annual meeting in Hamburg, Germany in May followed by an international symposium on land markets. Commission 3 organized its annual meeting and seminar attracting about 100 participants to Athens, Greece in October 2000. Both Commissions have also introduced a successful concept on national reports on the commission expertise.

As an example of the many activities of the Commission working groups, the seminars organized by Commission 7 Working Group "Reforming the Cadastre" during the Austrian Geodetic Congress and the 13th International Course on Engineering Surveying (cosponsored by Commissions 5 and 6) in Munich should be mentioned.

FIG further contributed to the national surveying congress in Bogotá, Colombia in November, 2000. The Bureau met during the ACSM national congress in Providence, Rhode Island in the USA in December 2000. The Commission chairs participated in seminars in Sofia, Bulgaria and San Salvador, El Salvador.

In Prague FIG established a new task force to review the role and structure of commissions, task forces and permanent institutions in FIG. The Bureau looks forward to final proposals to encourage the commissions to take an even more active role in implementing the goals of the Federation.

Task Forces

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The first ever CLGE and FIG Seminar in Delft focused on the enhancing professional competence in Europe.

FIG has been actively involved in international standardization both in ISO but also by preparing the FIG Guide on Standardization. The Task force on under-represented groups in surveying has continued its work publishing a quarterly newsletter.

The Task Force on Mutual Recognition was the subject of a joint expert seminar hold in November in Delft on Enhancing Professional Competence of Surveyors in Europe. This seminar was a cooperative effort of FIG and the European surveying association CLGE.

The Task Force on Sustainable Development completed its work at the end of 2000 by publishing the draft "FIG Agenda 21". This is an important contribution from FIG to implement Agenda 21 and the Habitat Agenda in the surveying profession.

A new task force on cultures and languages in FIG was established by the General Assembly in Prague.


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Mr. Sarkis Fadous, President of the Ordre de Géomètres-Topographes du Liban, receives the membership certificate from Vice President Jerome Ives.

The number of member associations was 79 members from 68 countries at the end of 2000. In 2000 an application for membership was accepted from Ordre des Géomètres-Topographes du Liban (Lebanon), Czech Association of Certified Property Appraisers (Ceská spolecnost certifikovaných odhadcu majetku) (Czech Republic), Ordem dos Engenheiros, Colégio de Engenharia Geografica (Portugal) and Sociedad Colombiana de Topógrafos (Colombia).

In addition Jordan, Guatemala and El Salvador joined as affiliate members. The new affiliate members from Latin America were supported by the US aid project "Hurricane Mitch Recovery Program". The number of academic members was already 28 at the end of 2000. The number of corporate members was 10 at the end of 2000. The new members that joined during the year were Josef Attenberger GmbH and Terra Map Server GmbH from Germany and Blom ASA from Norway.

FIG Education Foundation

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Prof. Holger Magel receives a check of US$ 5,000 on behalf of the FIG Foundation from Prof. Ian Williamson at the General Assembly in Prague.

The General Assembly decided to reorganize the Foundation under the FIG umbrella at its meeting in Seoul. This was implemented by moving the former FIG Education Foundation from Australia to Denmark where it is administrated from the FIG office. The new format of the Foundation will offer better opportunities for FIG to serve its members in developing countries with greater efficiency, and to assist young surveyors in those countries.


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Prof. James P. Reilly, President of the American Congress on Surveying and Mapping ACSM and Robert Foster, President of FIG at the ACSM Annual Conference in Providence, USA in December 2000, where the Bureau discussed among other issues the FIG Congress 2002, Washington, DC.

The Bureau intends to visit as many member associations as possible during its term of office. It is, however, unable to visit all countries due to a shortened term of office while we convert to the new governance structure.

Before the Prague working week I visited Norway, Finland, Estonia, Sweden, Malaysia and China. Following the working week the Bureau members or FIG representatives have visited members in Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Czech Republic, Denmark, El Salvador, Finland, France, Germany, Greece, Kenya, Korea, Japan, Malta, Morocco, the Netherlands, Poland, Sweden, USA and Venezuela.

Director, FIG Office visited the Sociedad Colombiana de Topógrafos at their annual conference in Bogotá in November 2000.

As President I helped the Danish Association of Chartered Surveyors, DdL, celebrate their 125th anniversary in Copenhagen in September after which I flew to Krakow, Poland, where I met with the Council of the International Society of Mine Surveying for signing of our new Memorandum of Understanding. I enjoyed taking part in the symposium "The Mediterranean Surveyor in the New Millennium" in Malta that same month. In December the Bureau met in Providence, Rhode Island in the US, where the American Congress on Surveying and Mapping held a joint conference with the American Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing. Later in December the Director, FIG Office and I visited Japan; we were warmly greeted by representatives of the local surveying profession who arranged a tour for us of the Sokkia and Topcon facilities. From there we traveled to Seoul for a review of plans for WW2001.

Information Delivery

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The FIG office will continue in its Copenhagen office into the foreseeable future. The Bureau will sign a new contract with the Danish Association of Chartered Surveyors, DdL, in Seoul.

The FIG information delivery system is now available to more people than ever. The FIG web site includes relevant information for surveyors and through the web site we can reach people that we may never contact through traditional communication methods. In 2000 the FIG Bulletin was published only once but returns to the quarterly schedule in 2001.

The proceedings from the FIG working week 2000 as well as from the main seminars are available both in electronic format and as hard copies.

FIG Members 

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FIG Members 31st December 2000


Association des Géomètres Algériens

Federación Argentina de Agrimensores

The Institution of Surveyors, Australia

Austrian Society for Surveying and Geoinformation

Bahamas Association of Land Surveyors

Belarus Land Reform Association

Union Belge des Gèomètres-Experts Immobiliers

Union of Surveyors and Land Managers in Bulgaria

Canadian Institute of Geomatics

Chinese Society of Geodesy, Photogrammetry and Cartography

Sociedad Colombiana de Topógrafos *)

Croatian Geodetic Society

Association of Rural Surveying Engineers of Cyprus

Czech Republic
Czech Union of Surveyors and Cartographers
Czech Association of Certified Property Appraisers *)

Danish Association of Chartered Surveyors DdL

Egyptian Committee of Surveying and Mapping

Association of Estonian Surveyors EGÜ

Fiji Institute of Surveyors

Finnish Association of Surveyors MIL

Former Yugoslav Republic of Macedonia  FYROM
Union of Geodesy Societies of FYROM

Ordre des Géomètres-Experts OGE
Association Francaise de Topographie AFT

Deutscher Verein für Vermessungswesen e.V. DVW

Ghana Institution of Surveyors

Technical Chamber of Greece
Hellenic Association of Rural and Surveying Engineers

Hong Kong, China The Hong Kong Institute of Surveyors

Magyar Földméresi, Térképészeti és Távérzkelési Társaság

Ikatan Surveyor Indonesia

The Society of Chartered Surveyors
The Irish Institution of Surveyors

Association of Licensed Surveyors in Israel
Israel Land Valuers Association

Consiglio Nazionale Geometri

Land Surveyors Association of Jamaica

Japan Federation of Surveyors JFS

Institution of Surveyors of Kenya

Korea Confederation of Surveyors

Latvian Association of Surveyors

Ordre des Géomètres-Topographes du Liban – Lebanon *)

Lithuanian Association of Property Valuers
Lithuanian Association of Surveyors

Ordre Luxembourgeois des Géomètres OLG

Institution of Surveyors Malaysia

Land Surveyors Society

Nederlandse Vereiniging voor Geodesie

New Zealand  
New Zealand Institute of Surveyors

Nigerian Institute of Surveyors
The Nigerian Institute of Quantity Surveyors NIQS

Norges Jordskiftekandidatforening NJKF, faglig gruppe af NIF and GeoForum

Palestinian Authority  
Licensed Surveyors Association in Palestine

Papua New Guinea  
Association of Surveyors of Papua New Guinea

Stowarzyszenie Geodetow Polskich

Ordem dos Engenheiros, Colégio de Engenharia Geografica *)

Union of Romanian Geodesy

Federal Service of Geodesy and Cartography in Russia

Singapore Institute of Surveyors and Valuers

Slovak Republic  
Slovak Union of Surveyors and Cartographers

Association of Surveyors of Slovenia

South Africa  
South African Council for Professional and Technical Surveyors

Colegio Oficial de Ingenieros Técnicos en Topografia

Sri Lanka  
Surveyors Institute of Sri Lanka

Sveriges Lantmätareförening SLF
Samfundet för Fastighetsekonomi

Schweizerischer Verein für Vermessung und Kulturtechnik

Order of Syrian Engineers and Architects

Trinidad and Tobago
Institute of Surveyors of Trinidad and Tobago

Chamber of Surveying Engineers of Turkey

Ukrainian Society of Surveying

United Kingdom  
Institution of Civil Engineering Surveyors ICES
The Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors RICS

American Congress on Surveying & Mapping ACSM
The Appraisal Institute

Association of Geodesy, Cartography and Remote Sensing

Union of Surveying Engineers (Serbia and Montenegro)

Surveyors Institute of Zambia

Real Estate Institute of Zimbabwe

(79 members from 68 countries)


Chile, Colombia, El Salvador *), Guatemala *), Jordan *)


Antigua and Barbuda, Bahrain, Belize, Bhutan, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Guyana, India, Lesotho, Madagascar, Mexico, Mongolia, Senegal *), Tanzania (Zanzibar), Thailand, Tonga, Tunisia and Tuvalu


Facultad de Ciencias Exactas y Tecnologias / UNSE, Departamento Academico de Agrimensura *)

The University of Melbourne/Department of Geomatics

University of Botswana/Department of Civil Engineering

University of New Brunswick/Department of Geodesy and Geomatics Engineering

Universadad de Concepcion, Unidad Académica Los Angeles, Departamento Geomensura *)

Universidad Distrital Francisco José de Caldas de Bogotá/Facultad de Ingeneria, Ingenieria Catastral y Geodesia

Aalborg University, School of Surveying/School of Surveying and Planning

Helsinki University of Technology/Department of Surveying
Espoo-Vantaa Institute of Technology (EVITech) *)

Technische Universität München/Faculty of Civil Engineering and Surveying
University of Applied Sciences Oldenburg/Ostfriesland/Wilhemshaven, 
Department of Surveying Engineering *)

Hong Kong, China 
The Hong Kong Polytechnic University/Department of Land Surveying & Geo-Informatics

The University of West Hungary/College of Surveying and Land Management/Department of Geomatics *)

Dublin Institute of Technology/Geomatics Unit

University of Nairobi/Department of Surveying *)

Agricultural University of Norway/Department of Land Use and Landscape Planning *)
Agricultural University of Norway/Department of Mapping Sciences *)

New Zealand 
University of Otago/Department of Surveying

University “Dunarea de Jos” din Calati/Department of Surveying

Universidad Politécnica de Madrid, Escuela Universitaria de Ingeniería Técnica Topográfica *)

Royal Institute of Technology/Real Estate Planning and Land Law

Istanbul Technical University, Civil Engineering Faculty, Department of Geodesy and Photogrammetry *)

United Kingdom 
Kingston University/Faculty of Design/School of Surveying *)
Leeds Metropolitan University/School of the Built Environment
Sheffield Hallam University/School of Urban and Regional Studies
University College London/Department of Geomatic Engineering

Michigan Technological University/School of Technology/Surveying *)
New Mexico State University/Surveying Engineering *)


Berntsen International Inc, BLOM ASA*), GITC Bv, Josef Attenberger
GmbH *), Kampsax A/S, Leica Geosystems AG, Schonstedt Instrument Company, SOKKIA CO., LTD., Terra Map Server GmbH *), Trimble Navigation Ltd

*) Members admitted during 2000

Key Contacts

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Key contacts

Robert W. Foster

Professor Holger Magel (Germany)
Jerome C Ives (USA)
Dr Tom Kennie (UK)
Christian Andreasen
Charles W. Challstrom

Congress Director
Mary G Clawson

Director, FIG-UN Liaison
Professor Ian Williamson (Australia)

Commission 1 (professional standards and practice)
Chair: Professor John Parker

Commission 2 (professional education)
Chair: Professor Kirsi Virrantaus

Commission 3 (spatial information management)
Chair: Jes Ryttersgaard

Commission 4 (hydrography)
Chair: Dennis A St Jacques

Commission 5 (positioning and measurement)
Chair: Professor Jean-Marie Becker

Commission 6 (engineering surveys)
Chair: Dr Michel Mayoud

Commission 7 (cadastre and land management)
Chair: Dr Paul Munro-Faure

Commission 8 (spatial planning and development)
Chair: Helmut Brackmann

Commission 9 (valuation and the management of real estate)
Chair: Michael Yovino Young

Ad hoc commission on construction economics/management
Chair: John Collinge

Task force on under-represented groups in surveying
Chair: Gabriele Dasse

Task force on standards
Chair: Iain Greenway

Task force on mutual recognition of qualifications/reciprocity
Chair: Professor Stig Enemark

Task force on sustainable development
Chair: Helge Onsrud

Task force on the future governance and management of FIG
Chair: Dr Tom Kennie

Task force on the review of commission, task force and permanent institution structure 2000–2002
Chair: Dr Tom Kennie

Task force on cultures and languages in FIG
Co-Chair: Bernard Bour
Co-Chair: Hagen Graeff

Office International du Cadastre et du Régime Foncier (OICRF)
Director: Professor Paul van der Molen

FIG Multi-Lingual Dictionary Board
c/o Bundesamt für Kartographie und Geodäsie

International Institution for the History of Surveying and Measurement
Director: Jan de Graeve
Secretary James R Smith

FIG Foundation
c/o FIG Office
Director: Professor
Holger Magel

FIG office
International Federation of Surveyors
Lindevangs Allé 4
DK-2000 Frederiksberg
Copenhagen, Denmark
Tel. +45 3886 1081
Fax +45 3886 0252
FIG home page:
Director: Markku Villikka

Income and Expenditure Account, 1999 and 2000

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  2000 1999
  Swiss francs Swiss francs
Subscriptions, member associations  290,743 306,675
Subscriptions, affiliates 1,136 1,600
Subscriptions, sponsor members 38,640 38,250
Subscriptions, academic members 3,978 1,500
Sales of publications 113 742
Interest income 2,678


Contributions 0 51,526
Various 13,887 1,972
Total income 351,175 402,307
Bureau administration 73,378 67,899
Bureau meetings 22,115 50,199
FIG meetings 32,593 59,976
Support to member associations 45,615 49,798
Commission activities 57,428 43,840
Promotion 49,237 49,234
Establishing permanent office


Total expenditure 285,375 342,773
Surplus for the year



Membership subscriptions by region in 2000 FIG expenditure by activity, 2000

Jes Ryttersgaard, Chair of FIG Commission 3 and Dr. Chryssy Potsiou after the successful Commission Annual Meeting and Seminar in Athens in October 2000.

The role of sponsor members was developed towards a corporate membership during the year. FIG met its corporate members both in Prague and at the Intergeo 2000 in Berlin.

The FIG Annual Review 2000

Published by the International Federation of Surveyors FIG

ISSN 1018-6522
ISBN 87-90907-14-0

Material from this Annual Review may be reproduced freely.