XIX Congress of the International Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (ISPRS) was held at the RAI Congress Centre in Amsterdam, Netherlands during 16-23 July 2000. The Amsterdam Congress took place under the auspices of the Netherlands Society for Geoinformatics and Earth Observation (NSEOG) with the theme “Geoinformation for All”.
From all over the world and over 100 countries, scientists, policy-makers, technical experts and other interested persons from the rapidly expanding and important field of remote sensing came to the capital of the Netherlands. They came to exchange ideas and to study the latest techniques for observing, measuring and capturing features on the earth’s surface. An estimated 3,000 peole took part in the technical sessions, presentations and exhibition.
Prof. M. Molenaar, President NSEOG & Chairman, Scientific Committee of the Congress, justified the theme “Geoinformation for All” and said that development of geoinformation technology has direct linkage with the policy related to environmental planning and social development. It has to do with all walks of life. In the digital era in which we live, this implies proper communication between the `All’.He informed the audience that about 1,600 papers have been received for oral and poster presentation with over 2,000 sq. metres of technical exhibition area.
Welcoming the delegates, Prof. Lawrence Fritz, President, ISPRS, emphasised on the need of helping the global society. He advocated for working towards spreading the fruits of geoinformation for all and to enable global commmunity receive the benefits of digital imagery.
Keynote Address was presented by Dr. Ismael Serageldin, Vice President for Special Programmes of the World Bank. Dr. Ismael presented a highly thought provoking keynote address from a user perspective truly justifying the theme of the congress. His address touched upon the basic issues and challenges which the whole world faces today. Increasing population causes serious problems of food requirements, soil degradation, pollution, urban congestion, water scarcity, biodiversity and disappearing of wetlands. These problems are not only local and regional but also becoming of global concern. He expressed his hope that geoinformation technologies like Remote Sensing and GIS can play a vital role in dealing with such problems. By using GIS geoinformation technology we can move from global to local and ability to overlay helps to have integrated approach. He requested that ISPRS programme should make geoinformation available, accessible, useful, producible, understandable and beneficial to all.
There were three invited speakers in the opening session including Dr. K. Kasturirangan, Chairman, Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO), Dr. Jack Dangermond, President, Environment System Research Institute (ESRI) and Dr. He Changchul, Head of Remote Sensing and GIS at Food and Agriculture Organisation.
Dr. K. Kasturirangan presented an overview of the demand and supply scenario and policy issues concerning with the growth and ready usage of the geoinformation technology. He said that geoinformation required by different groups for differnet purposes; for instance individuals taxation, tourism, precision and farming; private organisations for business, infrastructure, services and development; government for natural resource management, development planning, census and disaster management; and research institutions for studying global change, earth science, oceans and atmospheric science. Major issues concerning geoinformation are database standards, inter-operability, data errors, metadatabases and accessibility. He also advocated for developing policy environment for geoinformation technology in such a way that it is able to meet the challenges of societal development in cost-effective manner. For the first time, a new and compact formula was adopted for the Congress which has traditionally covered a miminum of two weeks. This time, the seminars and presentations, including the exhibition, took place over just one week. The Congress was opened with laser show presentation covering various aspects of the theme “Geoinformation for all”.
ISPRS 2000 did attract more than the anticipated number of participants which made the conference and exhibition a resounding success. The number of business-oriented visitors were high. During the exhibition the stands of LH Systems and Z/I Imaging where the digital camera system ADS40 and the DMC 200 were displayed was the main attraction of the visitors. The first production models of theabove sais products are expected to become available next year.
The Awards Following awards were presented at ISPRS Congress:
- “Honorary Member” was bestowed on Prof. Shunji Murai
- The Brock Gold Medal Award – sponsored by American Society of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing was presented to Dr. Jack Dangermond in respect of an outstanding landmark achievement in the evolution of Geo- information Science.
- The Otto von Gruber Award was presented to Prof. Helmud Mayer and Prof. George Vosselman for significant papers on photogrammetry and allied subjects.
- U V Helava Award was presented to Dr. Martina Meister, Dr. Armin Gruen and Dr. H. Dan.
- The Schermerhorn Award – sponsored by the Netherland Society of Earth Observation and Remote Sensing was given to Dr. Tsehaie Woldai, Assistant Professor at ITC, for significant contribution to activities of Working Group of ISPRS during past four years.
- Young Scientist Award was presented to:
- Babak Ameria from Iran
- Satya Priya from India
- Garry Zalmanson from USA
- Jochen Schiewe from Germany
- Ansgar Brunn from Germany
- Jun Li from China
- Marc Honnikel from Switzerland
In the field of remote sensing this conference was therefore of vital importance that policy-makers, politicians, scientists, ordinary people, as well as the manufacturers of new equipment and software can stay in touch with each other. From all attendees – guests, participants and exhibitors, the reactions were extreamly positive. The four-yearly ISPRS Congress fulfills an extremely important need. Istanbul (Turkey) was chosen during the Congress in Amsterdam to host the XX ISPRS Congress in 2004.
For further information, visit : www.itc.nl/~isprs
Technical Commission Presidents 2000-2004
- Prof Stanley Morain, University of New Mexico, USA; [email protected]
- Prof Chen Jun, National Geomatics Centre of China, China; [email protected]
- Prof Dr Franz Leberl, Graz University of Technology, Austria; [email protected]
- Dr Costas Armenakis Geomatics Canada, Canada; [email protected]
- Prof Petros Patias, The Aristotle University, Greece; [email protected]
- Dr Maria Sausen, INPE, Brazil; [email protected]
- Dr Rangnath Navalgund, Indian Space Research Organisation, India; [email protected]