Celebrations to mark the centenary of foundation of International Society for Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing (ISPRS) on 4 July, 1910 kicked off on 2 July with the launch of a booklet produced by the Joint Board of Geospatial Societies entitled “Geoinformation for Disaster and Risk Management; Examples and Best Practices.” The venue was the United Nations Office of Outer Space Affairs (UN-OOSA) in the Vienna International Centre. The event was attended by a select group of diplomats, administrators and scientists and was followed by a press conference. Orhan Altan, President, ISPRS presided over the function.
In his opening remarks, David Stevens of UN-OOSA welcomed the guests and remarked that this is a landmark booklet as it puts together some very interesting case studies. Marc Cygan, President, JBGIS, briefly dwelt on the rationale for the booklet and its intended audience. He was of the opinion that it would be useful not only for the present but for the future as well. Sisi Zlatanova, one of the editors, traced the process of the creation of the booklet and the challenges associated with writing for politicians who are the intended audience. Piero Boccardo, another editor, illustrated the approach of the case studies with the example of the Haiti earthquake.
At the press briefing chaired by T Doi of UN-OOSA, chairperson of the press briefing, commented that the booklet was the result of a partnership between UN-OOSA and JBGIS and its success indicated that there is a need to work together in the future as well. Orhan Altan, while responding to questions about open data policies, capacity building, integration with national and international disaster mitigation bodies, use of local information, etc indicated that it was still ‘work in progress’ and the booklet was the first of many such initiatives in the pipeline.
Source: Our special correspondent