UN-GGIM: Europe kicks off work on Global Fundamental Geospatial Data Themes

The Working Group on Global Fundamental Geospatial Data Themes (UNGGIM: WG Fundamental Data) kicked off with a workshop at the UN-GGIM High Level Forum in Addis Ababa on the 19th April 2016.

The workshop was a success, attracting 35 delegates from various UN Member states, international organisations, the private sector and the UN-GGIM Secretariat. The workshop was introduced by Bengt Kjellson (Sweden), Chair of the Executive Committee of UN-GGIM: Europe. Presentations by Clare Hadley (UK), Chair of the UNGGIM: WG Fundamental Data and Carol Agius (EuroGeographics), UN-GGIM: Europe Administrator followed. The presentations provided the delegates with a background, aims and objectives of the Working Group together with an outline of some of the existing initiatives already carried out by the different regional entities, and an overview of what is understood by fundamental geospatial data themes.

Besides participating in an engaging discussion the workshop participants had the opportunity to breakout in four small groups to debate and discuss their views on candidate fundamental geospatial data themes. The results from the breakout sessions will be collated in the work of the Working Group.

Background to the UNGGIM: WG Fundamental Data:

The UN-GGIM Committee of Experts Committee mandated UN-GGIM: Europe to establish and lead a Global Working Group to draw together current projects from different UN-GGIM regional bodies to determine global fundamental geospatial data themes. This followed from the report on the determination of global fundamental geospatial data themes that was prepared and presented by UN-GGIM: Europe to Committee at its Fifth Session in August last year.

While the Executive Committee of UN-GGIM: Europe will act as the steering group for this global Working Group it has appointed the United Kingdom to lead UN-GGIM: WG Fundamental Data. UN-GGIM: Europe will act as the permanent secretariat to the Working Group.

The main objective of the Working Group is to produce a recommendation for a minimum list of global fundamental geospatial data themes by collating results from existing activity being undertaken by UN-GGIM regional committees to avoid duplication and using where possible existing resources.