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Ingrid Kretschmer (1939–2011)

The long-time president of the Austrian Cartographic Commission, academic teacher of generations of cartography students at the University of Vienna and outstanding cartographic researcher Ingrid Kretschmer has passed away.

Ingrid Kretschmer was born in Linz, Austria, on 22 February 1939. Her academic career began in 1966 as university assistant at the Institute of Geography, University of Vienna under supervision of Erik Arnberger. She worked as university lecturer at the Institute of Geography and Regional Research of the University of Vienna till her retirement in 2004.

Ingrid Kretschmer dedicated her whole life to cartography both at university and scientific associations. She was a constant contributor to the Cartography and Geoinformation teaching during the long vacancies of the professorship of geography and cartography in the Institute.

Besides the administrative duties, Ingrid Kretschmer dedicated herself to education, in which the history of cartography, thematic cartography and school cartography were her specialisations. Many graduates remember the exactness and rigorous attention to the correct usage of professional terminology, which was characteristic of Prof Kretschmer.

The scientific work of Prof Kretschmer consists of 282 publications about fundamental issues and the history of cartography, as well as collaborations in editorial work. The most important among the numerous publications are Wesen und Aufgaben der Kartographie – Topographische Karten (Character and Duties of Cartography – Topographic Maps) in the encyclopedia Die Kartographie und ihre Randgebiete (Cartography and its Peripheral Areas) together with Erik Arnberger (1975), Lexikon zur Geschichte der Kartographie (Lexicon of the History of Cartography) together with Johannes Dörflinger and Franz Wawrik (1986) and Atlantes Austriaci in cooperation with Johannes Dörflinger and Helga Hühnel (1995). From 1977 to 1997 she was editor of the Geographischer Jahresbericht aus Österreich (Annual Geographic Report of Austria) and from 1996 to 2004 she was co-editor of Wiener Schriften zur Geographie und Kartographie (Viennese Writings in Geography and Cartography), founded by Ferdinand Mayer.

Besides the academic research and education, the Austrian Geographic Association and the Austrian Cartographic Commission were Prof Kretschmer’s fields of activity. She was active within the Austrian Cartographic Commission from the beginning of her academic career. She worked on numerous map exhibitions at international conferences and on the organisation of cartographic historical conferences. She was member of the editorial board and corresponding member of the editorial staff of Kartographische Nachrichten (Cartographic News). For more than 25 years she worked on Bibliographia Cartographica and was member of the Imago Mundi Board  of Directors since 1993.

Between 1997–2004 she was president of the Austrian Geographic Association and worked tirelessly in preparing the 150th anniversary celebration of the association in 2006 including the edition of the celebration bulletin. Due to her excellent achievements for the association, she was appointed honorary president of the association in 2006. Already in 1995 she became honorary member of the German Cartographic Association, from which she received its highest award, the Mercator Medal, on 13 October 2004.

Ingrid Kretschmer died in Linz on 22 January 2011, one month before her 72nd birthday. The funeral took place at Meidling cemetery in Vienna. Austrian, German and international cartography lost an adorable person, who dedicated herself and her whole life to cartography. We will miss her wealth of knowledge and energy. The Austrian Cartographic Commission lost one of its outstanding members.

Georg Gartner

Category: General News

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