FIG Task Force on Under-Represented Groups in Surveying





SET Mentoring Programme 1999-2000 - Evaluation Report, University of Edinburgh, UK

Personalities: Kari Strande, Norway

Final Task Force Report 
by Gabriele Dasse, Task Force Chair

SET Mentoring Programme 1999-2000
Evaluation Report

University of Edinburgh, United Kingdom

The following report dated 8 March 2001 is copied from the web site of the University of Edinburgh, UK and printed with permission.

1. Introduction

This was the fourth year of the Science, Engineering and Technology mentoring programme and it ran with 31 mentoring pairs. The programme is funded from the central staff development budget and by the Faculties involved. The evaluation was conducted as in previous years by means of a questionnaire issued to all mentors and mentees at the end of the programme and a final evaluation /networking event. The Springboard programme was evaluated separately.

All participants were asked as in previous years:

  • how suitable the match had been
  • what benefits they had gained from the programme
  • what changes could be made to improve the programme still further.
2. Aims

The aims of the project are to:

  • establish a mechanism for supporting and encouraging women near the beginning of their careers in SET
  • provide a structured way of assisting women to examine career options and plan their careers
  • provide opportunities for women in these disciplines to network more widely and discuss common issues
  • develop a model for a mentoring programme which could be expanded to other areas
  • encourage the development of coaching and counselling skills within the mentors.

and in the longer term to:

  • increase the numbers of women applying for more senior posts
  • contribute to an increase in the proportions of women at Senior Lecturer and Professorial level within the University.
3. Methodology

The 1999/2000 project established thirty one mentoring pairs linking women at or near the beginning of their careers with more senior women, who acted as mentors. In addition to the mentoring process, the group of Mentees completed the Springboard Women's Development Programme, which provides a structured approach to reviewing key career development options.

  • Publicity for the Programme

The programme was publicised throughout the Faculty Groups by a range of methods including personal letters; two information sessions were held for potential mentors and mentees to ensure that potential participants had a clear idea of the purpose and content of the programme.

  • The Matching Process

Criteria were established to ensure that mentors and mentees were matched appropriately, taking account of the experience of other mentoring programmes, to ensure that both parties achieved the most benefit from the mentoring process, the matching process was primarily driven by the mentee's requirements.

  • The Mentoring process

It was expected that the mentor and mentee would meet at least twice per term to exchange information, ideas and opinions although this was at the discretion of the pairs, most pairs met 3 to 8 times, with meetings being of varying lengths. Meetings were structured to some extent, however the precise arrangements were negotiated and agreed by each mentoring pair.

The mentoring relationships were monitored over the course of the programme and attempts made to resolve any problems as they arose. There were very few problems this year. However, one mentee was assigned a replacement mentor as there were some difficulties with the relationship.

  • The Springboard Women's Development Programme

The Springboard Women's Development Programme is a well-established programme, which provides a structured method of establishing career goals and options. It is used with other University staff with positive results and it has a successful track record in a range of public and private sector organisations.

It was expected that the Springboard activities and discussions would overlap with themes in the mentoring exchanges and half of the mentees had indeed used Springboard to provide a framework for the mentoring discussions.

4. Evaluation Methods

Project evaluation was carried out by means of questionnaires to mentees and mentors and a final networking and evaluation session at which the programme and its impact was discussed. The Springboard course was also evaluated.

The evaluation of the project was designed to assess:

  • the impact of the project on mentors/mentees
  • any difficulties arising
  • the potential for developing and enhancing the original approach
  • the potential for expanding the scheme to other areas.
5. Results of Evaluation

5.1 Suitability of match

The suitability of the matches this year was very satisfactory with only 1 mentee saying the match was not suitable because the mentor was in a different scientific area. All the mentors thought the matches were either suitable or very suitable.

5.2 Benefits - Mentees

Mentees identified a range of benefits from the programme with 85% saying they had benefited from their mentor's experience and the same percentage saying their confidence had increased. 65% said they had a clearer career plan and smaller numbers said that they had benefited from networking and that the programme had given them the strength to keep going.

5.3 Benefits - Mentors

78% of mentors said they had benefited from contributing to someone's future but in addition, 20% of mentors said their confidence had increased since being involved in the programme and some also said they had benefited from networking. One of the criticisms of the programme was that there had been less opportunity for mentors to network this year and this will be addressed in future programmes. Mentors also identified that the mentees' attitudes had helped to keep them motivated and that the process presented an opportunity for mentors to reflect on their own career and activities.

5.4 Career Aspirations and Changes

40% of mentees reported that their career aspirations had changed since the beginning of the programme and 65% had made positive moves in their career. Half of the mentors involved had also made positive moves in the career over the course of the year but several pointed out that this was not as a direct result of the programme.

5.5 Level of optimism

Almost all the mentees reported that they were either very optimistic or quite optimistic about their career prospects and 75% said that their optimism had increased over the period of the programme.
Mentors were less optimistic on the whole possibly reflecting uncertainty over contracts and funding as well as particular issues for women in Science. However, 78% said they were either very optimistic or quite optimistic. 13% of mentors said they had become more optimistic over the course of the programme with 9% saying they had become more pessimistic but stressed that this was not due to the programme but other factors.

5.6 Mentoring or Springboard?

As in previous years, mentees where asked whether they felt the mentoring experience or the Springboard programme was most important and most (70%) said that both parts were equally important with many mentees using parts of the Springboard programme to structure their discussions with their mentor. Of the remainder, 20% thought the mentoring was more important and 10% thought the Springboard programme more important.

5.7 Women-only programme

As in previous years, 80% of mentees and 80% of mentors thought it was either quite important or very important that it was a programme for women only. A minority of 20% thought it was not important and some people thought the young men would also benefit from such a programme.

6. Some Comments from Mentees
  • "I have a good trusting relationship with my mentor. She is professional/astute/experienced and a really nice person. I would like to continue to benefit from her experience both as a professional and as a woman"
  • "It's good just knowing that there is someone different to talk to when things get on top of you"
  • "It was a very beneficial and positive experience. She was easy to approach and speak to about most issues"
  • "It has been good to have someone to talk to, unconnected with my department - but who understands the trials of Academic life"
7. Some Comments from Mentors
  • "Mostly my mentee's energy and positivism was so impressive that I got motivated at least as much as I was able to motivate her"
  • "Always a pleasure to meet up with people from different disciplines because you can become very isolated within your own department"
8. Future of the Programme

The evaluation of progress from the mentors and mentees continue to be very positive, and the staff involved are keen that the programme should continue within the University. In the forth-coming year there will be a cut in funding from the faculties and centrally and other options for funding will have to be explored if the programme is to continue at a similar level.


Kari Strande is international adviser by Statens kartverk (Norwegian Mapping Authority) in Norway. She is educated in surveying and land use planning / land consolidation at the University of Agriculture at Ås.

She started her career in the Ministry of Environment working with outdoor recreation issues, especially in making areas along the coastline available to the public. Here the subjects of property law, valuation and use of maps were helpful skills. After one year in the Ministry she complemented her studies in planning issues at the University of Architecture in Oslo and in law on special subject expropriation and valuation at the University of Oslo.

In 1976 she was asked to carry out a project to collect materials and edit a book on mapping and use of maps. The project had the objectives of creating a book in Cartography that could be easily read both by students in surveying and mapping issues, politicians and planners. Both German and English literature where searched and all the Geographic and survey institutions and organisations in Norway contributed to the project that finalised in a book published in 1981 and up-dated in 1986. It was used in technical schools, colleges and universities up to 2000. Now it is outdated, but there is still a need for such materials, may be now more addressed to teachers in primary and secondary schools.

In the period 1976 to 1986 she was working as planner and manager at municipal and regional level and was really a user herself of Geographic Information. In this period she was also engaged in boards of various organisations such as Norwegian Association of Cartography, Geodesy and Hydrography, Norwegian Association of Chartered Surveyors, Norwegian Mapping Council and Norwegian Orienteering Federation. She was also member of a Nordic Group in District Development and member of a Governmental working group preparing the New Act of Planning which came into force in 1986.

In the period 1980 - 1981 she participated in the 10 weeks courses in Society Planning organised by the Ministry of Environment and broadened her network. In 1992 -1993 she attended a programme in management organised by a specialised institute in Northern Norway. The courses here were based on a more including and participatory management philosophy than the more economic management trends.

In the period 1986 -1994 she was engaged as director of the Land Mapping Division in Statens kartverk (Norwegian Mapping Authority). This was a period with big changes and challenges in the field of Geographic Information and this also demanded changes and new organisational structure of the leading institution in this field in Norway. In this period Statens kartverk and Kari was engaged in promoting women to take part in the surveying and mapping field. She also was a mentor for two girls in her institution in a governmental program for training future female managers. In this period she was engaged in several boards by various institutions like Gjøvik College in engineering, nursing and forestry, Norwegian Space Agency, The Geological Survey of Norway and Norwegian Soil and Forestry Survey.

In 1995 Kari left her management occupation and went into a new role as international and strategic adviser to the Director General. This opened for new contacts all over the world and engagement both in Nordic, European and Global organisations like EUROGI, EuroGeographics and FIG.

Kari is Norwegian delegate to Commission 3 in FIG and her primary concern is dissemination of understanding of the Value for Society by use of Geographic Information and GIS. She has presented papers at various FIG conferences on the issues of Norwegian policy on spatial data infrastructure, GI-Value for Society and Area management systems.

In private Kari is engaged in sport and outdoor activities, mainly Orienteering where she both compete and participate in the management at several levels. She is fond of music and used to sing in quires and participate in various entertainment activities before she moved to Hønefoss. In respectively 1992 and 1994 she and her husband adopted two children from Vietnam and Kari has also established contacts with colleges in Vietnam. Now she is preparing an exchange programme between Norway, Vietnam and Laos in the surveying and land administration field. The programme is established for people at the age between 22 and 35.

FIG Task Force on Under-represented Groups in Surveying

Final Report for the General Assembly
2002 in Washington, USA

Why to deal with Under-represented Groups in FIG?

The work of FIG depends on a relatively small number of surveyors considering the fact that FIG represents about 230,000 persons in the surveying profession. These international active survey-ors are an ageing and overbalancing male population. The number of young men and women engaged in the work of FIG is of concern. And there is also a lack of participants from associations (countries) which are financially less strong.

The Task Force on Under-represented Groups in Surveying was established in 1996 to encourage women and young surveyors to participate in national associations and FIG and specifically to consider and bring forward recommendations for

  • enhancing professional development opportunities for women and young surveyors

  • encouraging equal opportunities for individual members within FIG, not depending on gender or native language or other cultural characteristics

  • facilitating professional contacts for women and young surveyors, as well as for linguistic minorities, within the FIG community.

The time span of this Task Force is limited and will end in 2002 with the FIG Congress in Washington.

Questionnaire send out to FIG Member Associations and Universities

The Task Force mainly focussed its work on the major under-represented groups in FIG: women and young professionals. We do not know how many women work in all fields of the Surveying profession or have an education in Surveying and we do not know how many young professionals will come into the profession. To get more information the Task Force sent out two questionnaires to FIG member associations and to universities in 1998. From 73 member associations answered 15 (21 %) and from 204 universities 45 (22 %). All results can be found on the FIG homepage ( ).


Together with the answers to the questionnaire member associations and universities reported about several activities concerning under-represented groups. This was the starting point to establish a Newsletter. The quarterly Newsletter gave background information concerning national associations, international organisations, universities, "Women's Access to Land", congresses, scientific research and political decisions. Every issue presents one female personality of the surveying profession. The last issue will come out in March 2002. All newsletters are as well available on the FIG homepage. Many thanks to Markku Villikka for his excellent job publishing all editions of the newsletters and supporting the Task Forces' activities.

Following reports were published

1. Concerning Associations

  • Fifteen Years of Affirmative Action in the American Congress on Surveying and Mapping by Wendy J. Woodbury Straight, USA

  • 10th Anniversary of the DVW Working Group "Women in Surveying" by Gabriele Dasse

  • American Congress on Surveying and Mapping/National Society of Professional Surveyors Forum for Equal Opportunity sets goals for 2001 by Gail Oliver, USA

  • ICEFLOE - The Equal Opportunities Forum of the Institution of Civil Engineers by Michelle McDowell

2. International organisations

  • FIABCI Young Members Group, by Alexander Benedetti, Italy

  • Gender in the Habitat Agenda: implications for the International Federation of Surveyors (FIG) by Diana Lee-Smith and Sylvie Lacroux, UNCHS (Habitat)

  • Women's Rights to Land, Housing and Property in Post-Conflict Situations and During Construction: Press Announcement by Habitat

  • Past - Present and Future of the ICA Commission on "Gender and Cartography" by Ewa Krzywicka-Blum and Eva Siekierska

  • Task Force Activities during the FIG Working Week 2001 in Seoul, Korea by Gabriele Dasse, Task Force Chair

3. Universities

  • Equal Oppotunity Prize 1997, School of Spatial Sciences by Professor Graham D Lodwick, Australia

  • Encouraging Girls and Young Women to Choose a Technical Career by Dr. Renate Kosuch, Germany

  • Women in Science and Engineering Activities in Canada by Dr. Elizabeth Cannon

  • The Everyday Occupational Life in Natural Sciences and Engineering - A gender-related study on inner conflicts and how men and women try to solve them by Dr. Renate Kosuch

  • Engineering Education: for Ourselves and for the Public by Wendy J. Woodbury Straight, USA

  • University to boost Engineering among American Indians by Wendy J. Woodbury Straight

  • Reflections to increase the Participation of Women in Surveying Studies by Gabriele Dasse, Germany

  • Affirmative Action: Focus on College Admissions by Joanne L. Schweik

4. "Women's Access to Land"

  • Women's Access to Land - a Task Force Group of FIG Commission 7, by Agneta Ericsson, Sweden

  • Women's Access to Land - Experiences from Land Administration Projects - by Agneta Ericsson, Sweden

  • Women's Access, Control and Tenure of Land, Property and Settlement - some Obstacles and practical Advice by Ewa Qvist, Sweden

  • Women's Access to Land - FIG Guidelines

5. Congresses

  • The World Conference on Science

6. Scientific Research

  • Research Activities in UK by Dr. Clara Greed

  • Women and Science: some facts, some impressions, by Marysa Demoor, Belgium

  • Ethnic Minorities in Construction in Britain: Exclusion or Inclusion by Clara H. Greed, UK

  • Raising the Ratio

  • Land Tenure Perspectives of Ester Boserup's Works by Karin Haldrup

7. Political Decisions

  • Resolution on Women and Science by the European Parliament

Following Personalities were published

  • Gabriele Dasse, Germany

  • Alison Cochlovius Gouws, South Africa

  • Agneta Ericsson, Sweden

  • Kirsi Artimo, Finland

  • Mary C. Feindt, USA

  • Chryssy Alex. Potsiou, Greece

  • Gerda Schennach, Austria

  • Wendy J. Woodbury Straight, USA

  • Jenny Whittal, South Africa

  • Marie Christine Robidoux, Canada

  • Bodil Dahl Ekner, Denmark

  • Dr. Clara Greed, UK

  • Natalia Filippovich, Belarus

Meetings and Presentations

During the FIG Congresses and Working Weeks the Task Force organised at least one meeting or session. The highlight of the Task Forces' activities will be two joint sessions with six presentation concerning gender aspects during the Washington Congress:

FIG Congress in Brighton, UK

  • Women in surveying - the long way to acceptance by Gabriele Dasse, Germany

FIG Working Week in Sun City, South Africa

  • The Surveying Industry in South Africa by Jenny Whittall

  • Gender Aspects in Programmes of the European Union

FIG Working Week in Prague, Czech Republic

  • The Security of Tenure in post-conflict Situations by Dr. Sylvie Lacroux

  • Under-represented Groups in Urban Development Issues Including in the Professional Practice by Dr. Sylvie Lacroux

FIG Working Week in Seoul, Korea

  • Which Changes in the Curricula do we need to attract more Women to study Surveying? by Gabriele Dasse, Germany

FIG Congress in Washington, USA

Wednesday, 24 April 2002, 14.00-15.30
JS11 The Modern Profile of Surveyors - Gender Aspects I

Joint Session of Commissions 1 and 2 and Task Force on Under-represented Groups in Survey-ing and ACSM/NSPS Forum for Equal Opportunity
Chair: Gail Oliver, Chair of the ACSM/NSPS Forum for Equal Opportunity, USA

  • Gerda Schennach, Austria: Challenges for Women in a Changing Profession

  • Gabriele Dasse, Germany: Wanted: Women Engineers

  • Wendy J. Woodbury Straight, USA: Advantages and Reflections: Efforts to include women in United States surveying and mapping, 1981-2001

  • Karin Haldrup, Denmark: Mainstreaming Gender Issues in Land Administration

Wednesday, 24 April 2002, 16.00-17.30
JS16 The Modern Profile of Surveyors - Gender Aspects II
Joint Session of Commissions 1 and 2 and Task force on Under-represented Groups in Surveying and ACSM/NSPS Forum for Equal Opportunity
Chair: Gabriele Dasse, Chair of FIG Task Force, Germany

  • Boo Lilje, Sweden: Why Are Young Women Attracted to Survey Education in Sweden

  • Pat Turrell, Sara J. Wilkinson, Vanessa Astle and Samantha Yeo, UK: A Gender for Change: The Future for Women in Surveying

  • General discussion on the Under-represented Groups in Surveying


The Task Force has been building up a network with 56 members (71 % women) at the moment. Many contacts to colleagues and the exchange of experiences motivate to get in contact with FIG.

Using Internet and mailing opportunities the contact to other gender working groups in national and international associations (e.g. Commission on Gender and Cartography of the International Cartographic Association ICA; ICEFloe Equal Opportunities Forum of the Institution of Civil Engineers, UK; Forum for Equal Opportunity of the American Congress on Surveying and Mapping) has been established.

The co-operation with the FIG Commissions 1 and 2 were excellent. John Parker and Kirsi Virrantaus, the Chairs of both Commissions, participated at all Task Force meetings and brought the Task Force activities forward.

Four articles of the Task Force Group of FIG Commission 7 „Women's Access to Land" were published in the Task Force Newsletter giving the opportunity of a broader discussion and facilitating the implementation of the proposals.

The contacts between the Task force on under-represented groups in surveying and UNCHS Habitat were intensified at the FIG Working Week in Prague. Dr. Sylvie Lacroux from Habitat gave two very interesting and informative presentations during the week. Her first presentation "The Security of Tenure in post-conflict Situations" was given at the technical session "Co-operation with International Bodies and Organisations". The second paper "Under-represented Groups in Urban Development Issues Including in the Professional Practice" prepared by Dr. Sylvie Lacroux, Diana Lee-Smith and Catalina Trujillo was presented at the first meeting of the Task force. The discussion that followed her presentation gave a deep insight into the activities of Habitat.


The Task Force made the following proposals:

1. to encourage the Hosts of Congresses and Working Weeks

  • to fix a lower fee for students,

  • to enable the attendance of 20 students, like in Brighton or Melbourne, to assist the organisers,

  • to evaluate the participants concerning gender, age and Commissions,

  • to mark the name tags of participants attending the first time a Congress or Working Week, to facilitate an integration,

  • to provide meeting points with tea and coffee or lunch.

The proposals concerning Commissions work were as follows:

  • To enable several Commission meetings or workshops during a Congress (or Congress of a Working Week) if asked-for, also after the presentation of papers. This would enable discussions in Commission meetings afterwards,

  • to integrate all Commission meetings into the Congress or to make the General Assembly a part of the Congress,

  • to have only one registration fee for the Congress and the General Assembly to facilitate the attendance of Commission delegates to the General Assembly,

  • to announce all Commission meetings in the program and

  • to announce them as open meetings for all Congress participants.

2. to encourage the Member Associations

  • to report about the activities of FIG in their publications,

  • to support the attendance of young professionals and students at FIG Congresses or Working Weeks and at national congresses,

  • to enable practical work for foreign students and young professionals,

  • to increase the amount of student members.

3. to encourage the Commissions

  • to support corresponding members, to inform them (topical homepages) and to facilitate the attendance of commission meetings.

4. to encourage the General Assembly

  • to think about regional FIG meetings to facilitate the attendance of students and young professionals

  • that there should be at least one woman in all FIG Nominations Review Committees.

FIG Congress in Washington, DC

On behalf of the FIG Task Force on Under-represented Groups in Surveying an e-mail was distributed by Markku Villikka, Director of the FIG Office, to Member Associations, Affiliates, Academic Members, Corporate Members, Correspondents, Council Members, Officers of Commissions and Permanent Institutions, Honorary Presidents and Honorary Members to ask for assistance to support and encourage the Under-represented Groups in Surveying to attend the FIG Congress 2002 in Washington, DC and to give presentations.

Many thanks to the Congress organisers, especially the Congress Director Mary Clawson for fixing a special low registration fee for students and also a lower registration fee for speakers. And the Washington Congress will be the first FIG event to get information about the participants concerning commissions, gender, age and first attendance.

Future Aspects

The Task Force on Under-represented Groups gave a lot of recommendations and made a lot of proposals.

Excellent is that a

  • Working Group of Commission 1 will be established which could continue with publishing Best Practices and

  • FIG forum for under-represented groups will be established to continue with networking.

Following recommendations should be carried out by the FIG bodies:

  • the involvement of under-represented groups in all activities,

  • the implementation of gender mainstreaming in FIG's work,

  • the survey of the Washington Congress registration and the registration of the following FIG Working Weeks.

Gabriele Dasse, Task Force Chair
22 February 2002

Editor: Chair of the Task Force on Under-represented Groups in Surveying
Ms. Gabriele Dasse, Kleinfeld 22a, D-21149 Hamburg, Germany
Fax + 49 170 9620 453 
web site:

1/02, month of issue: March

© Copyright 2002 Gabriele Dasse.
Permission is granted to photocopy in limited quantity for educational purposes.
Other requests to photocopy or otherwise reproduce material in this newsletter should be addressed to the Editor.