Focus Stories

Every month we will focus on a specific theme, featuring a selection of articles which have previously been published in GIM International magazine. By including a mix of older and more recent articles, we will present a complete recap of the subject. Furthermore, we will be bringing you a bi-weekly round-up of ‘Focus Stories’ related to the theme through our newsletter (sign up here). The theme for April 2016 is:


Focus on: Africa

A New Era in Land Administration Emerges

The challenge for the global land community is clear: secure land rights for all people, in all places, at all times. The response: a new era in land administration, one underpinned by a wave of innovative thinking and coupled with quickly maturing, scalable approaches that can be applied globally. Supported by world-leading private companies, mode... (read more)

Crowdsourcing: a Wake-up Call for Surveyors

Land forms the basis of food and shelter, and is one of the four production factors in the economy. Surveyors play a key role in designing and implementing spatial plans. In many cities in Africa, improper spatial planning results in situations of informality and completely uncontrolled development. As preparations are well underway for the FIG Wor... (read more)

Developing the Namibian NSDI

Namibia is establishing its National Spatial Data Infrastructure (NSDI) through the Namibia Statistics Agency (NSA). It has been a deliberate decision by the government of Namibia to marry location information with statistics in order to improve evidence-based development planning and socioeconomic intervention. The approach in Namibia is not... (read more)

Ford and the Art of Map Maintenance

In the wake of the recent monetary turmoil, an often-heard quote is one by the late Henry Ford – founder of the Ford Motor Company and management guru – who once said: “It is well enough that people of the nation do not understand our banking and money system, for if they did, I believe there would be a revolution before tomorrow... (read more)

Moving Mountains in Africa

There is general agreement that spatial data is key to sustainable resource management and overall economic development. A Spatial Data Infrastructure (SDI) in turn provides the underlying foundation for accessing and using spatial data in decision-making processes. The author shows how SDI is being utilised by the Lesotho Electricity Corporation s... (read more)

Nigeria Needs Federal Commitment to its Geodata Policy

Nigeria has all the prerequisites to install an effective national geospatial data infrastructure (NGDI) from which all its 170 million inhabitants would benefit. The country has many educated professionals, a national policy concept, money, lots of projects, more and more data, etc. But what is missing is the will to make a conscious effort to imp... (read more)

Strengthening Capacity: Geospatial Technologies in the Land of a Thousand Hills

The University of Twente (UT), The Netherlands, has collaborated with the University of Rwanda (UR) on a project called ‘Strengthening the Capacity of Geo-Information and Earth Observation Sciences at the University of Rwanda, for the sustainable environmental and socio-economic development of Rwanda’. The achievements of the project we... (read more)

Systematic Land Titling and Registration: Methods for Boundary Demarcation and Survey in Poorly Mapped Nations

The importance of mapping for national and global management of resources and the environment as well as for sustainable development has been universally acknowledged. However, many developing nations are still poorly mapped according to past and recent studies. It is widely accepted that land administration systems (LASs) need to undergo mode... (read more)

UN Stimulates African SDIs

In Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa has a Geoinformation Support Team of a dozen people striving to develop spatial data infrastructures (SDIs) Africa-wide. “Progress on formal SDIs has been very slow, but the geospatial capacity is notably improving on the continent,” concludes team member Andre... (read more)
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