On each conference days a plenary session is planned, each with three inspiring, high level presentations that will highlight current challenges and focus areas within the overall theme Surveying the world to tomorrow - From digitalisation to augmented reality. The three sessions will be:


Theme: Living of Tomorrow – In a Digitalised World

Mr. Arvo Kokkonen
Director General
National Land Survey, Finland

Does the Surveying Sector Change Quickly Enough?

“Surveying and Land Administration have traditionally fallen under exercise of public authority. Now new technologies, processes, and legislation enable an ever more up-to-date data and information service that also meet the customer needs better. The information we produce comprises new dimensions - not only the X,Y,Z, and time -but also geographically. This challenges the surveying sector to renew itself as far as both administration and content are concerned and, most importantly, in relation to its customers.”


Arvo Kokkonen is a surveyor employed by the National Land Survey of Finland (NLS) for nearly 30 years. Mr. Kokkonen has held many different positions like Chief District Surveyor and Deputy Director General. He has also worked as Survey Counsellor in the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry for nearly two years and as cadastral surveyor in the town of Haapajärvi for five years. He was appointed Director General of the NLS from September 1, 2012. Mr. Kokkonen has also worked in international projects and organizations, e.g. being member of UNECE Working Party on Land Administration and EULIS. Likewise, he has participated in the activities of EuroGeographics, PCC, UN-GGIM and FIG.

Mr. Greg Bentley
Chief Executive Officer
Bentley Systems

Going Digital:  Reality Modeling Advances Engineering and Surveying

New technologies and processes for capturing existing conditions through digital photography and scanning are transforming traditional workflows and creating opportunities for engineers and surveyors to provide new value throughout the infrastructure lifecycle.  With these breakthroughs, surveying can be virtually continuous, creating detailed, engineering-ready 3D models of a facility, an active construction site, or a city, resulting in an immersive environment for engineering, construction progressing and infrastructure asset operations. The presentation will feature real-world examples of reality modeling, including the latest 3D city modeling of Helsinki, and highlight how surveying can now play a key role in emerging workflows for conceptioneering, constructioneering, inspectioneering, and productioneering.


Greg joined his four brothers at Bentley Systems in 1991. Previously, he founded a financial trading software firm, which became part of SunGard Data Systems, Inc., an S&P 500 company on whose public-company board Greg served from 1991 through 2005. He holds an M.B.A. in finance and decision sciences from Wharton. Greg is a trustee of Drexel University, where he also serves as chairman of the advisory board for the Pennoni Honors College, and a trustee of the National Building Museum.

Mr. Oumar Sylla
Land and GLTN Unit Leader
UN Habitat / Global Land Tool Network

The development of cities after Habitat III and the surveyors’ role

The message will serve as awareness creation for broader Land Professionals in successes of the United Nations Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development (Habitat III) which was held in Quito, Ecuador on 17 – 20 October 2016.  It will resonate key aspect of the New Urban Agenda - an action oriented document  which sets global standards of achievement in sustainable urban development, rethinking the way we build, manage, and live in cities through drawing together cooperation with committed partners, relevant stakeholders, and urban actors at all levels of government as well as the private sector.  This message will highlight the centrality of land in the New Urban Agenda and how the professionals will participate in implementation and the role played by GLTN Partners and Land and GLTN Unit of UN-Habitat in emphasising the role of land in the Agenda.  


Oumar Sylla

Mr. Oumar Sylla is the Land and GLTN Unit Leader within the Urban Land Legislation and Governance (ULLG) branch at UN Habitat effective 14th of September 2015. He is greatly experienced, both academic and practical, in land governance, natural resources, conflict resolution, and urban development and planning, urban safety and security, slum upgrading, regional cooperation and partnerships.  Prior to joining Land and GLTN Unit, Oumar served as a Senior Advisor in UN-Habitat’s Regional Office for Africa where, among other things, he coordinated a regional program to strengthen the capacity of member states in the Great Lakes Region to deal with land and property issues related to displaced persons in support to the International Conference of the Great Lakes Region secretariat and to the Peace and Stability Framework for the Great Lakes Region. Before that, he supported implementation of the GLTN programme and managed UN-Habitat land program in Democratic Republic of Congo in a peace building context as Chief Technical Advisor. He also has experience on the European Union framework, which he gained as a Land Policy Advisor in South Sudan and Burkina Faso. In addition he served as a Researcher Fellow within the Laboratory of Legal Anthropology in Paris 1 Sorbonne, mainly working on land and decentralization policies in West Africa.


Theme: Professional behaviour – In a Digitalised World

Mr. Robert Guinness
Research Manager
, Navigation and Positioning
Finnish Geospatial Research Institute, National Land Survey, Finland

(In the absence of Prof. Heidi Kuusniemi, Director, Navigation and Positioning, Finnish Geospatial Research Institute, National Land Survey, Finland)

Future trends in pervasive positioning

Focus will be on the future trends in pervasive positioning. With the development of technologies, more diverse location services are needed to meet the demand of customers. What kind of pervasive positioning technologies are we going to use to create new opportunities via large-scale data collection of position and sensor measurements?



Mr. Guinness is a Research Manager and leader of the “Intelligent Mobility and Geospatial Computing” research group in the Department of Navigation and Positioning of the Finnish Geospatial Research Institute, part of the National Land Survey of Finland. He holds a bachelor degree in physics from Washington University in St. Louis and a master degree in space studies from the International Space University in Strasbourg. He began his career at NASA in Houston, Texas before entering the field of navigation research in 2010. In 2014, he co-authored the book “Geospatial Computing in Mobile Devices,” published by Artech House. His doctoral thesis, published in 2015, was titled “Context Awareness for Navigation Applications.” His current research interests include privacy-preserving location technologies and analysis of crowdsourced geospatial data. Since 2015, he leads the MyGeoTrust project which is focused on these two topic areas.

Prof. Yola Georgiadou
Professor in geo-information for governance
Faculty of Geo-Information Science and Earth Observation (ITC)
University of Twente

Geo-ethics: Past, Present, Future

Geo-ethics has a long tradition. Thirty years ago, Brian Harley suggested that geo-ethics is much more than a code of professional conduct. Geo-ethics refers to transcendental values that go to the heart of social justice in the world at large. Geo-ethics combines ethical issues from natural sciences (accuracy), social sciences (respect for human subjects, non-discrimination, avoidance of cultural bias), engineering sciences (environment, risks, impacts) and information sciences (information privacy, security, censorship, intellectual property). Presently, in the age of big data, geo-ethics is fiercely debated among techno-optimists and techno-pessimists. But the debate does not need to be polarized. In the future, geospatial scientists and engineers may shape geo-information technology in a socially responsible way.


Yola is professor in geo-information for governance at the Faculty of Geo-Information Science and Earth Observation (ITC) of the University of Twente. She is past member of the Board of the GSDI Association (representing academia), of the Capacity Building Working Group of CODI-Geo, United Nations Economic Commission of Africa and of Executive Committee of the International Society of Digital Earth (ISDE). She is member of  the NCG sub-commission on SDI in the Netherlands, of the editorial board of the Journal Information Technology for Development (JITD), the International Journal of SDI Research (IJSDIR) and the International Journal of Digital Earth (IJDE). Her research is at the interface of geo-information technology, policy and global development. Her current studies include how people enact, organize, and institutionalize (or not) geo-information technology in various policy domains (water, environment, urban and land) and how the informational, social and material underpinning of human action (i.e. infrastructure) is built, maintained and breaks down. Her methods are qualitative. Her normative orientation is “working with the grain” of institutions and organizations in the global South.

Yola was collaborator in the research program 'Linking local action to international climate agreements in the tropical dry forests of Mexico’, and in ‘Using spatial information infrastructure in urban governance networks in Indian cities’. She is leader of the research program ‘Sensors, Empowerment, and Accountability in Tanzania (SEMA)’. The three programs are funded by the Netherlands Organization for Scientific Research — Science for Global Development (NWO-WOTRO).

Dr. Jolyne Sanjak
Chief Program Officer

Innovative and more affordable technology and how to democratize data gathering

Based on her own experience both from current work at Landesa, and also from previous experience within FAO working on the VGGT, Dr. Sanjak will explore what is innovative and more affordable technology and how to democratize data gathering.


Dr. Jolyne Sanjak is an agricultural economist with specialization in development economics. She has more than 30 years of experience related to inclusive global economic development. Her principle expertise areas include rural and urban land governance, rural livelihoods and agricultural development. Currently serving as Landesa’s Chief Program Officer, she provides strategic leadership, oversight and technical support to Landesa’s programmatic work worldwide. Prior to joining Landesa, Dr. Sanjak founded and was the Executive Director of the Land Alliance, a not-for-profit organization engaged in supporting land-based development around the globe. She served the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) as Deputy Vice President for the Technical Services Division and in other roles before that. At the MCC , Jolyne  lead teams working on private sector development, agriculture, land tenure, gender and social assessment, health, education, and community development, fiscal accountability, procurement, economics and monitoring and evaluation. She also helped shape MCC strategic direction and policy.

She has served as a lead for the United States government in intergovernmental negotiations including the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization’s Voluntary Guidelines on the Responsible Governance of the Tenure of Land, Fisheries, and Forests in the context of National Food Security (VGGT). Her earlier professional experiences include being  an Assistant Professor of Economics, joint with Latin American Studies and a land tenure consultant for the World Bank, IFPRI, the FAO and the IADB with specialized expertise in land markets, land tenure, land policy, property registration, agricultural productivity and gender and impact evaluation.


Theme: The Contribution of our Profession – In a Digitalised World

Prof. Markku Poutanen
Director,  Geodesy and Geodynamics,
Finnish Geospatial Research Institute, National Land Survey, Finland

Future of Geodetic Reference Frames

New emerging techniques will change our ways and possibilities for precise georeferencing. This will imply also changes in most basic entities like the reference frames. Crustal deformations, like land uplift or continent motion will affect our measurements to be made in global, not a local reference frame. With increased accuracy demands, new ways of thinking and new methods are needed to fulfill the requirements.


Professor, PhD Markku Poutanen is the Director of the Department of Geodesy and Geodynamics, Finnish Geospatial Research Institute (FGI), National Land Survey of Finland. He has been working in the FGI since 1985 on satellite geodesy and positioning, reference frames and metrology. He has an Associate professorship in two universities.

Poutanen is the current president of EUREF, commission of the European Reference Frames. He is chairing the United Nations Committee of Experts on Global Geospatial Information management in Europe (UN-GGIM: Europe) working group of Geodetic reference frame in Europe (GRF: Europe).

He has been the president of the European Geosciences Union (EGU) Geodesy Division, president of the International Association of Geodesy (IAG) sub-commission 3.2 Crustal Deformations and is a member of several National Committees related to ICSU (International Council for Science), and currently chairing the National Committee of IUGG (International Union of Geodesy and Geophysics).

Poutanen has more than 250 scientific and popular articles and he is author, co-author and editor of university-level text books and popular books on astronomy and geodesy. Asteroid 3760 Poutanen is named after him. He is a full member of the Finnish Academy of Science and Letters.

Mr. Fredrik Zetterquist
CEO Swedesurvey

Are we embracing the global transformative forces?

Major global change agents - globalization, urbanization, digitization, climate change etc - have large impact on societies and on individuals’ behavior, expectations and in the way in which they manage their lives. People make more active and informed choices which place greater demands on public administration and the way services are performed. They demand greater choice and control, more transparency, process inclusiveness and equity, access to information anytime and anywhere etc. And the convergence of social applications, mobility and sensor technique, cloud and big data etc. is influencing all industries. The land administration domain is no exception and a critical thinking about the implications embedded in these transformative forces is of fundamental importance. How can the land administration organizations capitalize on these trends and what actions are necessary in order to ensure that the staff competence is appropriate?

Fredrik Zetterquist

Mr. Fredrik Zetterquist is the Managing Director of Swedesurvey, the state-owned overseas agency of Lantmäteriet, the Swedish national mapping, cadastral and land registration authority. Since the beginning of the 1980s Swedesurvey has exported the competences and experience of Lantmäteriet throughout the world and as part of the Swedish government’s Policy for Global Development. Mr. Zetterquist has an MSc in Geodesy and Photogrammetry. After his studies he worked as lecturer in cadastral surveying and mapping during four years and was then employed by Swedesurvey in 1994, responsible for establishment of a Land Management Department at the University of Novgorod, Russia. After his return to Sweden in 1996, and until 2008, he worked as adviser and project manager in numerous long-term international land administration and capacity development projects, especially in Eastern Europe. Between 1996 and 1998 he did part-time PhD studies in 3D city modelling. Mr. Zetterquist also founded a company to conduct due diligence on land-related matters. Between 2008 and 2011 he was as Deputy Director instrumental in bringing up a large-scale farm enterprise in Russia, strictly in compliance with the World Bank’s social, ethical, environmental and legal performance indicators. Mr. Zetterquist was in 2012 appointed his current position as Managing Director at Swedesurvey. In March 2017 he was elected as Chair at the UN-ECE Working Party for Land Administration.

Prof. Juha Hyyppä
Head of Department, Prof. (Remote Sensing and Photogrammetry),
Distinguished Prof., Adjunct Prof.
Dr. Sc. (El. Eng.), Finnish Geodetic Institute, Department of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing

What about the Future? Radical Changes Created by the Technological Development   

Technological changes happen rapidly. How can surveyors prepare for this new world? How can we e.g. collect point clouds good enough to enable us to create accurate 3D models of the topography using cars, work machines, other vehicles… This challenges the future roles of surveyors. What will be the roles of various players like National Mapping and Cadastre Agencies in the future? Of the organizations who collect and produce topographic data; of the surveyors involved in point clouds; for those who create a 3D model of the road landscape. Surveyors need to think about how to create a whole new network around topographic or geographic data.

Juha Hyyppä has over 400 scientific and technical papers (85 ISI, 120+ journal, 200 full-paper reviewed) on remote sensing, especially in the field of laser scanning, radar and point cloud processing. The recognitions he has received include ISPRS President’s Citation 2008, ASPRS second best paper in PERS (2009), Innovation Award (2010) and recognition from MWP Symposium in 2011. He has been Editor/Guest Editor of several journals, including ISPRS Journal of Photogrammetry and RS, Centenary Celebration Issue, MDPI Remote Sensing on LS and Forestry Special Issue, and MLS Special issue.


30 May
31 May
1 June
9.00-10.30 Opening Ceremony Plenary Session Plenary Session
10.30-11.00 Coffee/tea Break
Exhibition opens
Coffee/tea Break Coffee/tea Break
11.00-12.30 Plenary Session 10 parallel Technical Sessions 10 parallel Technical Sessions