Welcome to the International Cartographic Association
Welcome to the website of the International Cartographic AssociationJune’s Map of the Month: World atlas in Polish and Braille
Welcome to the website of the International Cartographic Association
Map of the Month 07/2014: Death in Grand Canyon
June’s Map of the Month is a world atlas in Polish and Braille
Map of the Month 05/2014: Physical Geography of Ukraine

Invitation to the Barbara Petchenik Competition 2015

Big Miracle by Little Hands by Karina Balitskaya (13), Russia

“Big Miracle by Little Hands” by Karina Balitskaya (13), Russia

Dear Colleagues,

On behalf of the International Cartographic Association and the Commission on Cartography and Children, it is our pleasure to invite you to participate in the next Barbara Petchenik Map Competition 2015, an event created with the aim of promoting the creative representation of the world in graphic form by children.

In 2015, this biannual international award has a special connotation, because it is organized on the frame of activities programmed within the International Map Year. The theme for the 2015 competition remains the same: “My place in today’s world” and the entries can be nominated in four age groups: under 6 years, 6–8 years, 9–12 years and 13–15 years. The deadline for the participation in the contest is 1 May 2015. Details can be found in the rules document.

Winner drawings selected at national level will be displayed in the International Exhibition to be held during the 27th International Cartographic Conference in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil from 23–28 August 2015. An international jury will select the best entries by each age group. Also there will be a public vote open to all participants for a dedicated public prize. If you are interested in using children maps in your context, e.g. with publications, we would like to encourage you to contact us.

For more detailed information about the competition, please visit the Petchenik section on the ICA website, the website of the Commission on Cartography and Children or their Facebook page.

Yours sincerely,

Georg Gartner (President of the ICA)
José Jesús Reyes Nunez (Chair of the Commission on Cartography and Children)

A place for maps in the human brain

Figure Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine 2014

Figure by Mattias Karlén

The 2014 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine honors the discoveries of cells that constitute a positioning system in the brain. These efforts are crucial for many research agendas in the cartographic community concerned with cognitive processes and impact-oriented maps.

Recent investigations with brain imaging techniques, as well as studies of patients undergoing neurosurgery, have provided evidence that place and grid cells exist also in humans. In patients with Alzheimer’s disease, the hippocampus and entorhinal cortex are frequently affected at an early stage, and these individuals often lose their way and cannot recognize the environment. Knowledge about the brain’s positioning system may, therefore, help us understand the mechanism underpinning the devastating spatial memory loss that affects people with this disease.

The discovery of the brain’s positioning system represents a paradigm shift in our understanding of how ensembles of specialized cells work together to execute higher cognitive functions. It has opened new avenues for understanding other cognitive processes, such as memory, thinking and planning.

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Announcement of the 10th Jubilee Workshop on Digital Approaches to Cartographic Heritage

The ICA Commission on Digital Technologies in Cartographic Heritage announces its 10th Jubilee Workshop on Digital Approaches to Cartographic Heritage to be held at Corfu, Greece, on 27–29 May 2015 hosted by the History Department of the Ionian University, a supporting institution of our commission.

The central building of the University, Ionian Academy, 1824

The central building of the University,
Ionian Academy, 1824

The Historical Archives of Corfu/General State Archives of Greece, Old Fortress, 1545–1555

The Historical Archives of Corfu/General State Archives of Greece, Old Fortress, 1545–1555

The venues of the workshop are the Aula Magna of the Ionian University (at the historic building of the Ionian Academy, 1824) and the Corfu Historical Archives / General State Archives of Greece (at the Old Fortress, 1545–1555).

Please find more information on the workshop’s website, which is continuously updated: http://xeee.web.auth.gr/ICA-Heritage/Corfu_2015.htm

Please feel free to forward the workshop announcement. I wish to see you all in Corfu in late Spring 2015,

Evangelos Livieratos
Chair of the ICA Commission on Digital Technologies in Cartographic Heritage

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President’s Blog: Education

Cartography is a domain including technology, art and science. In order to be able to fully deploy the capacity of cartography education in all these areas is key. It happens to be that respective university programmes, professional trainings, and job trainings are more and more changing their scopes and names, leaving the unique competence combination of cartographers, being able to deal with big data, modern technologies and artistic design, vacant.

It is of this reason, that programmes dealing with dedicated cartographic education are of growing importance. Let me highlight here two programmes, which ICA is taking significant note of.

  • The International Course on Management and Applied Techniques in Cartography (IC_Cartotechnology), run by the Institut Cartografic i Geològic de Catalunya, has the aim to provide a wide range of geoinformation professionals with a capacity-building instrument that covers the basis of advanced and up-to-date techniques, tools and critical thinking in cartography. It therefore integrates all the disciplines, approaches and techniques used to acquire and exploit geospatial data. Several ICA collegues have contributed to the first successful edition by giving lectures. The second edition starts in September 2014 and enrolment is still possible.
  • Three central european universities, the Technical University Munich, the Vienna University of Technology and the Technical University Dresden, are offering a joint Master Programme on Cartography. This is a 4-semester programme and it leads into a joint master degree of all three universities. Currently four intakes have been accepted and are in different stages of their studies. The programme is competitive, as only a restricted number of students can be accepted and has so far proven to be most successful in achieving the aim of educating experts with capacity in technologies, data handling and design skills.

Joint commission meeting children/planets

cccmeeting2014A day before beginning the 9th International Workshop on Digital Approaches to Cartographic Heritage, the Commission on Cartography and Children will have a meeting together with the Commission on Planetary Cartography. There will be a special presentation by former ICA President Bengt Rystedt representing the Working Group on the International Map Year.

All of you are invited to participate!

For more information, please see the Preliminary Programme.

Call: Workshop on Theoretical Cartography and Geo-Information Science

The ICA Commission on Theoretical Cartography and the ICA Commission on Atlases will organise the joint workshop on Theoretical Cartography and Geo-information Science, in conjunction with the Commission of Cartography and GIS, the Chinese Society of Surveying, Mapping and Geo-Information, Commission of Mapping, the Chinese Association of GI Industry on October 17-19, 2014, in the Institute of Geographical Science and Natural Resources Research (IGSNRR), Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), Beijing.

Please find all details in the PDF call.

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President’s Blog: Disaster management and cartography

Evacuation of Participants of the 5th Jubilee International Conference on Cartography and GIS with helicopters throught to flash floods in the region of Varna in June 2014

Evacuation of Participants of the 5th Jubilee International Conference on Cartography and GIS with helicopters throught to flash floods in the region of Varna in June 2014

The 5th Jubilee International Conference on Cartography and GIS (ICCGIS) together with EU Seminar on Early Warning and Crises management was held on June 15–20, 2014 in Riviera, Varna, Bulgaria. The successful conference was attended by 170 specialists from 42 countries around the world and was professionally organised by Prof Temenoujka Bandrova and her team once again.

The ICA Commission on Cartography in Early Warning and Disaster Management, chaired by Prof Milan Konecny, has contributed in the past to publications such as the UN-OOSA and JBGIS publication on “Geoinformation for Disaster and Risk Management”, demonstrating the strong need and demand for profound expertise in such contexts.

It happens to be, that the Conference demonstrated this connection unexpectedly. During the Gala dinner, which was organised in a typical Bulgarian restaurant, strong flash floods struck the region. The floods blocked several cities (in Varna city 12 people lost their lives). The only access to the road back to Riviera was closed due to rise in rivers’ water levels. Unexpectedly, participants had to spend the night in the manor without their personal belongings and medicines and with limited food reserves. Emergency services in Bulgaria and various embassies and medical centres were immediately contacted. Finally, with the help of the Military Geographic Service of Bulgaria all participants were evacuated via helicopters and returned safely back to their hotels.

This real life experience demonstrated, that the topic of “Disaster Management and Cartography” can’t be underestimated in its relevance to all of us.

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Planetary Cartography for Children

call4papersThe ICA Commission on Planetary Cartography‘s annual meeting will be held in Budapest, on 3 September 2014, one day prior to the 9th ICA Workshop Digital Approaches to Cartographic Heritage.

The meeting will be accompanied with a one-session workshop on the topic Planetary Cartography for Children.

Read the Call for papers here!

Participation in the meeting and workshop is free.

Thank you, Jeet Atwal

Jeet Atwal retired. We would like to use this occassion to thank her for her work dedicated to the ICA.

Barbara Petchenik Map Competition website

Archive of the winning entries to the Barbara Petchenik Children’s Map Competition – coordinated by Jeet Atwal

Jeet Atwal worked in the Maps Data and Government Information Centre at Carleton University Library (Ottawa, Canada) for more than 20 years. She was there when the ICA began to organize the biennial Barbara Petchenik World Map Competitions from 1993. In 1996, then-president Fraser Taylor brought the first set of drawings from the competitions to Barbara Farrell (then Head of Map Library at Carleton University), who commissioned Jeet Atwal to organize the storage of all entries. A couple of years later, Susan Jackson (retired Head of Maps, Data and Government Information Centre) gave her full support to begin the project on creating a website to make the stored entries accessible and to participate in other tasks related to the Barbara Petchenik Competition. Jeet Atwal became the main coordinator of the website, which was made public in March 2000.

Children Map the World, Volume 2

Jeet Atwal is one of the authors of Children Map the World, Volume 2

Jeet Atwal was one of the founding members of the ICA Working Group from 1995, and later of the Commission on Cartography and Children from 1999. She was the organizer of the exhibition entitled “Maps of Our Children’s World” to present a selection of children’s map drawings from 1993 to 2003 organized during the ESRI User Conference in San Diego, California, July 25 to 29, 2005. Jeet Atwal is also one of the authors of the first two volumes of the series “Children Map the World”, which were published by Esri Press in 2005 and 2009.

Again, thank you, Jeet Atwal – best wishes for your retirement!

Joint ISPRS/ICA Commissions meeting on Education and Training

The ICA Commission on Education and Training is collaborating with the ISPRS Commission VI to present a symposium in May 2014. Titled “Data, Information, and Knowledge Sharing for Geo-Education” the symposium will be held at Wuhan University, Wuhan, China from 19 to 21 May 2014. You are welcome to attend this symposium which has many interesting papers scheduled in the programme: topics in the Plenary session include Contemporary GeoEducation in China, Education for Disaster Resilience, and Education in International Map Year. Parallel sessions follow addressing a range of issues under headings including Technology Transfer and Capacity Development, Web-based Resource Sharing and E-Delivery of Education Services, Promotion of International Collaborative Education Programs, amongst others. The symposium website is at http://www.lmars.whu.edu.cn/isprscom6/index.html

The symposium is followed by a student summer school (22-28 May) with eminent visiting professors running intensive courses on topics such as spatial statistics and opensource mapping. The summer camp website is at http://www.lmars.whu.edu.cn/isprscom6/summercamp.html

David Fairbairn
ICA Commission on Education and Training

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