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Transforming the role of cartographers in digital and big data era

Bulgaria: Cartography has seen various stages of revolutions from the early digital technologies to the Web 2.0 based thematic maps. Users are demanding for simpler but interactive and analytical maps. The increase of mobile mapping applications and VGI, too, is challenging the integrity of the cartographic discipline. In this case, should cartographers take the lead in mobile content creation? The 5th Jubilee International Conference on Cartography & GIS, held recently in Varna, Bulgaria, brought together over 100 cartographers mainly from the Balkan Peninsula to discuss these challenges and the way forward for cartographic professions. In his keynote, Prof. Laszlo Zentai, General Secretary of International Cartographic Association, reminded cartographers that they have the responsibility to educate users on the best map visualization method. Michael Gould, Global Education Manager from Esri, too, urged cartographers to take the lead in the mobile-first world. There was a suggestion for cartographers to focus more on map validations and accuracy since map production is no longer subjected to cartographic domain. Further discussion is expected at the 27th International Cartographic Conference taking place in Rio de Janeiro in 2015.

Source: Our correspondent