FIG Working Week 2000, 21-26 May, Prague

The Global Role of Surveying in the New Millennium

by Robert W. Foster

Key words: FIG, surveying, sustainable development, globalization.


Globalization and sustainable development are two concepts being discussed at length today. How globalization will affect surveyors depends in large part on how surveyors define their profession and on how surveyors see themselves in the world arena. The activities of surveying, as defined by FIG, are examined.

The sustainable development concept is a response to the many symptoms of an over-expanding world population and its impact on the natural environment. In sustainable development, each generation would utilize the world’s resources in order to meet its needs without inhibiting future generations from meeting their needs. Three general ways are suggested in which the surveying profession may contribute to achieving sustainable development. The role of FIG is examined with an explanation and further examination of the FIG Bureau Work Plan.

Two major goals of the current Bureau Work Plan are "improving FIG’s responsiveness to the needs of the Member organizations’ members", and "developing of contacts with United Nations agencies and other international organizations in the context of the Commissions’ work plans".

Robert W. Foster
International Federation of Surveyors
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