Conference Agenda

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Session Overview
10-03: Roundtable on Geodetic Reference Frames
Wednesday, 16/Mar/2016:
4:30pm - 6:00pm

Session Chair: Vanessa Lawrence CB, The World Bank, United Kingdom
Location: MC 2-800

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Benefits of Investments in Geodetic Reference Frame Infrastructure

John Dawson

Geoscience Australia

Satellite positioning is vitally important to the economy, environment and society. The ability to position both information and objects accurately will be an increasingly important driver of prosperity. The Global Geodetic Reference Frame underpins global change science and supports improved disaster risk reduction through for example the measurement of tectonic processes and changes in sea level. With modest infrastructure investment and the use of Global Navigation Satellite System, such as GPS, a developing country can effectively, establish a national reference frame without a large and costly in situ network of classical geodetic measurements. There is an opportunity for developing countries to ‘leap-frog’ adoption of geospatial technologies, and to modernize their national geodetic infrastructures, fully compatible, consistent with and densifying the Global Geodetic Reference Frame.


What an Enhanced Geodetic Reference Frame Can Do For Economic Growth in Africa - Geodetic Reference Frames in Africa

Hussein Farah

Regional Centre for Mapping of Resources for Development (RCMRD), Kenya

For Africa to implement sustainable development goals and moves towards more regional integration and adoption of common approaches to peace and security, food security, environmental management, trade and industry, geospatial information that are compatible and continuous across sub- national and national boundaries are required. Furthermore, modern geospatial tools which include Global Navigational Satellite system (GNSS) are increasingly being used to speed up surveying and mapping activities to support different sectors of national development. Geo-referenced geospatial applications, services and products require a uniform geodetic reference system. To solve the problem of lack of such a system in Africa, African Geodetic Reference Frame (AFREF) has been proposed. AFREF is expected to be established using GNSS technology and implemented by all countries in Africa through their National Mapping Agencies with the support of the international community. The objective of the presentation is to publicize and seek a wider support for the AFREF project in the continent and the globe. The objectives, proposed implementation strategy, current status and expected benefits of AFREF will be addressed.


How Global and National Geodetic Reference Frames are Connected and Why They are Needed

Zuheir Altamimi

Institut National de l'Information Géographique et Forestière (IGN)

Satellite positioning technologies are key enablers of modern, more accurate and less costly national geodetic reference frames. The Global Geodetic Reference Frame underpins all satellite positioning technology including GPS. Access to accurate positioning depends on the availability of suitable national geodetic ground infrastructure, which are ubiquitous in developed countries but not in developing countries. A national geodetic reference frame provides a uniform and consistent reference platform for imaging and mapping the natural and built environment, cadastral and territory managements, and comparing geospatial data over time. The presentation shows how a geodetic reference frame is built using modern space geodesy data and why it is needed at the global, regional and national levels. To ensure efficient interoperability of geospatial data, land management and other location-based applications, it is fundamental that all national geodetic reference frames are consistent with each other. This is achievable if they are based on global navigation satellite system technologies (like GPS), and aligned to a unique global geodetic reference frame, such as the International Terrestrial Reference Frame.


Geodetic Capability and Infrastructure Vital for Prosperity

Anne Jorgensen, Laila Lovhoiden

Norwegian Mapping Authority

Geospatial information is vital for policy development as it informs our approach to everything from urban planning to emergency service response. It plays a key part in the fight against environmental degradation and runaway climate change. It has never been more important for society to detect changes of the Earth system with sufficient accuracy, for local, regional and global planning. The objective of this presentation is to show how securing vital societal needs like water security, flood control, natural hazard and disaster management, property rights, infrastructure development is impossible without sufficient geodetic infrastructure and capability. Geodesy is also fundamental in search for and exploitation of natural resources like oil and minerals. In addition, measures in geodetic capability and infrastructure building help to underpin and promote new location-based investments across the globe.


Overview of the Global Geodetic Reference Frame

John Dawson

Geoscience Australia

In 2015, the United Nations General Assembly recognised the importance of the Global Geodetic Reference Frame through the adoption of a resolution for A Global Geodetic Reference Frame for Sustainable Development. The General Assembly called for a greater multilateral cooperation on geodesy, including the open sharing of geospatial data, and capacity-building in developing countries. The generation of the reference frame is made by extraordinary achievements in measuring and monitoring changes in the Earth’s system through national mapping and space agencies, geodetic commissions, research organizations and universities, and other international organizations. Despite this, the development and sustainability of the Global Geodetic Reference Frame has not kept up with the demands of society, science and technological development. One of the prerequisites of a sustainable and accurate GGRF is an open sharing of core geodetic data around the world. Its strength and accuracy comes from having an evenly distributed network of observing geodetic instruments globally. The objective of this presentation will give an overview of the global geodetic reference frame and its strengths and challenges.


Integrating Geospatial Information into the SDGs

Gregory Scott

United Nations Statistics Division

Anchored by 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), 169 targets and a global indicator framework, the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development specifically demands the need for new data acquisition and integration approaches to improve the availability, quality, timeliness and disaggregation of data to support implementation at all levels – including to exploit the contribution to be made by a wide range of data, including Earth observations and geospatial information. Therefore data, as the basis for evidence-based decision-making and accountability, will be crucial to the success of the 2030 Agenda. Maximizing the value of fundamental geospatial information to capture elements of the 2030 Agenda, for decision and policy-making, is going to be critical to the future development path of many countries in the coming 5-10 years. However, such data and geospatial systems must be located and underpinned by accurate and reliable positioning technology and infrastructure. Geospatial measuring and monitoring can then support sustainable development, fill data gaps and/or improve the temporal and spatial resolutions of data, by bringing together information from various sources, particularly those related to the environment.


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