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FIG Working Week 2024 Recap

FIG Working Week 2024 Recap

From 19 – 24 May, more than 1,000 delegates from 90 countries converged in Accra, Ghana, for a highly memorable conference, FIG Working Week 2024. The conference themed “Your World, Our World: Resilient Environment and Sustainable Resource Management for All” included plenary sessions over three mornings where the most challenging topics were tackled. This was supported by a strong technical program from each of the 10 FIG Commissions:

  • Commission 1 – Professional Standards and Practice
  • Commission 2 – Professional Education
  • Commission 3 – Spatial Information Management
  • Commission 4 – Hydrography
  • Commission 5 – Positioning and Measurement
  • Commission 6 – Engineering Surveys
  • Commission 7 – Cadastre and Land Management
  • Commission 8 – Spatial Planning and Development
  • Commission 9 – Valuation and the Management of Real Estate
  • Commission 10 – Construction Economics and Management

The opening Ceremony on Sunday 19 May was led by the President of the Republic of Ghana, Nana Akufo-Addo, who spoke passionately about the work of surveyors and allied geospatial professionals. He touched on the topics being addressed at the conference that week, and their importance to many of the issues Ghana faces as a developing nation. He was supported by two of his ministers.

The week was filled with exceptional Ghanaian hospitality, music, drums, and dancing, making it a week to remember for those lucky enough to attend. The GCA Australian Delegation was 22 strong, led by Paul Digney (immediate past president of GCA, representing the Hon Kate Lundy); Peter James, Chair of the Brisbane Local Organising Committee; Tony Wheeler, GCA CEO; Bec Pascoe, GCA National Events Manager, and many other key players. These included, Ryan Keenan, Chair of FIG Commission 5; Rohan Bennett, Chair of FIG Commission 7; Roshni Sharma GCA Director and Co-Chair FIG Climate Compass Taskforce; Narelle Underwood, Executive Director Spatial Services NSW and Surveyor General; Kate Fairlie who stood in for Rob Sarib as spokesperson for the FIG Asia Pacific Capacity Development Network; Ian Harper (Commission 7) and numerous others.

Our Commission Chairs, along with other Commission Chairs, led strong technical programs over three days. Roshni delivered one of the plenary sessions in conjunction with David Elegbede, titled: “Mapping the World a Better Place: The Impact of Young Surveyors on Land Administration and Climate through the VCSP.” The VCSP (FIG Young Surveyors Volunteer Community Surveyor Programme) encourages FIG Young Surveyors to volunteer their time and skills to humanitarian and environmental causes to “Map the World a Better Place.” Young Surveyors from across the globe come together, bringing the energy of young blood into the fight for two of the most important issues our generation and world face today: the climate crisis and the lack of equal access to land rights, thereby establishing sustainable development through humanitarian surveying. This session highlighted the considerable achievements of the VCSP to date. Tony Wheeler also chaired a session with the Presidents of the FIG Member Associations from around the world, focusing on developing better ways to collaborate and enabling individual members of each association to benefit from being part of the FIG network.

As part of the closing ceremony, the FIG2025 team, led by Paul Digney and Peter James and supported by team mascot Kenny the Kangaroo, along with the entire Australian delegation in matching polo shirts, provided an entertaining conclusion to entice delegates to Brisbane next year. This was followed by Australian-sponsored drinks at the Ghana Village Bar overlooking the beach.

FIG Working Week 2024 also had mainstream media coverage in Ghana, with the importance of the event and the topics being addressed acknowledged. Brisbane was also mentioned as the location for next year’s Working Week. You can view the coverage HERE. There was also a legacy project launched at a local school to excite Ghanaian school students about careers in geospatial. Find out more HERE. All in all, it was a fantastic week, and we are looking forward to working with FIG to host 2025’s event next April!

Save the date for FIG2025 and Locate25, which will be taking place from 6 – 10 April in Brisbane. More information will follow soon.

Tags: FIG