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GWF2014: Connecting geospatial industry with mainstream industry

Geneva: Geospatial World Forum 2014 came to an end May 9, 2014, after five days of intense discussions on the best practices and success stories, and knowledge exchange at national, regional and global levels on the use and benefits of geospatial information and technologies across businesses.

The Forum, which had 35 collaborative partners, witnessed ministerial-level participations from Ghana, Mauritius, Malaysia, India, Azerbaijan and Philippines, and 405 technical presentations. A total of 1,002 delegates from 78 countries visited the conference, which also had 48 exhibitors from 16 countries, including two country-pavilions.

At a heavily attended closing panel on the last day of the conference, chair and moderator Christopher Barlow, Director, Strategic Relations and Communications, Thompson Reuters, summed up four days’ takeaways and invited the closing panellists to put their views forward.

Geoff Zeiss, Editor – Building and Energy, Geospatial Media & Communications, Canada, said the strategy to get into verticals such as building & construction, agriculture, energy etc. was an excellent move as it connects the geospatial industry with the mainstream industry and builds awareness about the evolving technologies.

Barbara Ryan, Director, Group on Earth Observations (GEO) Secretariat, Switzerland, said the conference was a perfect way for her organisation, which is pioneering the task of spreading awareness about the use of earth observation data for global benefits, to connect with the private industry, including geospatial and mainstream businesses. GEO also used the forum to launch their pet project GEO Appathon — an app-building contest using EO data.

Prashant Shukhle, Director General, Canada Centre for Mapping and Earth Observation, earth Sciences Sector, Natural Resources, Canada, said the conferences like this was essential is increasing the outreach of geotechnologies. He also called for strong interaction of the public sector with the private players to create conducive policies and market while optimising the use of these innovative technologies. Shukle, however, had a word of warning regarding too fast and too enthusiastic a focus on vertical industries, saying timing is critical and the industry must carefully learn from experiences.

Ronald van Coevorden, Worldwide Segment Marketing Manager – Geospatial Division, Trimble, said his company had been a strong supporter of such events since that creates a platform to interact with a wide variety of people from various public sectors. He also welcomed the trend of vertical focus of the industry.

Source: Our Correspondent