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
June’s Map of the Month is a world atlas in Polish and Braille
Map of the Month 05/2014: Physical Geography of Ukraine
Map of the Month 04/2014: Back in time feature on Géoportail

Commissions at a glance

During ICC 2013 all commission chairs presented their commissions in a speed presentation. You can check out the presentation slides below (or via our ICC 2013 sub-page).

ICA at the 37th session of the General Conference of UNESCO

37th session of the General Conference of UNESCO

37th session of the General Conference of UNESCO

Anne Ruas at the ICA booth

Anne Ruas at the ICA booth

The ICA was present during the 37th session of the General Conference of UNESCO, November 2013, Paris. Anne Ruas run a booth and gave a talk to present the activities of our association during the Non Governmental Organizations event. The role of map and geographical information for development and education was particularly emphasized. Having a better, quicker description of our world, its resources, its events, is a major importance.

The ICA is a leading international organization that plays an important role to improve the expertise and processes to make the information more readable and more accessible for all. Different contacts were taken with other organizations from Mali or Kenya such as SIL International which deals with the studies of minority languages and cultures around the world.

Category: General News

Orienteering and ICA

runnerOrienteering is the most “cartographic” sport; this is the main reason why an orienteering event is regularly part of the ICA international cartographic conferences. There are not too many cartographers who practice orienteering: most of them don’€™t know this sport at all. In the last few conferences, we had a session (or at least some presentations) on orienteering maps. Now we opened a new website section on ICC orienteering events with maps and photos (of events and sessions). Suggestions and corrections are welcome.

Category: General News

President’s Blog: It’s OK to be a Cartographer!

A graffiti wall in Dresden, 2013

A graffiti wall in Dresden, 2013

In my opening address at the International Cartographic Conference 2013 in Dresden, Germany I argued, that there is quite some confusion about the status, relevance and importance of Cartography. While the term “map” is most popular and sees its arrival in big business debates amongst major software companies, in mass market applications related to new technologies such as mobile devices or in the mass media, the term cartography provokes the question “Is that still around?” It is more likely that those, who are involved in making maps nowadays call themselves not a cartographer but rather something else.

I argued further, that the enormous relevance of the ever growing amount of geodata and geoinformation can only be “unleashed” when it becomes accessible to human users. To make geodata and geoinformation accessible to human users means to try to package it in a way that it can be perceived, “digested” and used, thus simply communicated. I argued further, that this was and is exactly the aim and contribution of cartography. Maps are most successful in being the interface between spatial data and human users. They order information based on the spatial attribute, they engage to explore, the can be entertaining, they help to become spatially aware, they tell stories, they help me to position myself in a particular topic by showing entities and their relations.

I argued that without this contribution we would be somehow “spatially blind.” Maps enable us to answer space-related questions. Maps can be used to support spatial behaviour. I argued further, that in order to enable spatial thinking, spatial planning, spatial reasoning or decision making cartography is needed. I pointed out that maps are the most successful and powerful instruments to enable spatial awareness.

By looking at those arguments as a way to describe the relevance of cartography as a discipline and the enormous drive and popularity cartography gets from applying most contemporary technologies I argued in my take-away messages:

  1. Cartography is relevant
  2. Cartography is attractive
  3. Cartography is most contemporary

If my arguments are trueg, then there is no need to step back or hide away as a cartographer but rather the other way around. It is of high importance that cartography and cartographers are actively contributing their skills, knowledge, methods and research to the geospatial domains.

I therefore argued, that
It is OK, to be a Cartographer!

Georg Gartner
President of the International Cartographic Association

eCARTO News October 2013

eCARTO News capture the latest cartographic news and developments from around the world. If you have any general cartography items of interest then please email them to the editor of eCARTO News.

General News


  • Mapping Out The Unknown With Cyborg Bug Swarms – redorbit.com
  • Mapping the ‘Time Boundaries’ of a City – theatlanticcities.com
  • Roads Kill: Mapping the Automobile’s Global Body Count – streetsblog.org
  • Climate change – Mapping the world’s most and least vulnerable areas – universityworldnews.com
  • UP team about to complete mapping of flood-prone areas – inquirer.net
  • ESA’s Earth’s gravity mapping mission ends after running out of fuel – india.com
  • Mapping the World’s Deadliest Roads – theatlanticcities.com
  • In a first, GIS mapping in polls – ekantipur.com
  • Masked Starbirth Mapped In New Milky Way Survey – universetoday.com
  • ESA’s Gaia Star-Mapping Mission Set For November Launch – redorbit.com
  • Deb Roy is mapping the TV Genome by tracking your tweets – wired.co.uk
  • Mapping aquifers: Aerial technology used to find drinking water – indiatimes.com
  • John Kitzhaber requests mapping of GMO crops, pledges to bring legislation in 2015 – oregonlive.com
  • Mapping a true icon – registerguard.com
  • Secret Cold War Sonar Tech Is Being Used to Map Underwater America – gizmodo.com
  • Mapping climate change in Google Earth – gearthblog.com
  • Mapping technique helps assess impact of urbanization on aquatic ecosystems – waterworld.com
  • Long-Sought Pattern of Ancient Light Detected – jpl.nasa.gov
  • Europe’s Gravity-Mapping GOCE Satellite Faces Big Fall from Space – space.com

Industry News

  • Global 3D Mapping and 3D Modeling Market – Industry Analysis, Size, Share, Growth, Trends and Forecast, 2013 – 2019 – sbwire.com
  • HERE Maps begins community mapping in India – overdrive.in
  • 1 Hidden Leader in the Mobile Mapping Revolution – fool.com
  • Bluesky Completes National Tree Map for England and Wales – geocomm.com
  • DeLorme lays off 10 in Yarmouth as focus shifts away from mapping – theforecaster.net
  • AAM upgrades to A3 Edge camera – spatialsource.com.au
  • XPRIZE dives into Earth’s final frontier – our oceans and their future health – theguardian.com

Archaeological and Cultural Mapping

  • Drone Mapping Lost Pyramids in the Andes – gizmodo.com
  • Mapping human activity in the last glacial maximum – sciencewa.net.au
  • New ISAW Exhibition Examines Geographic Knowledge in Ancient Greek and Roman Societies – greekreporter.com
  • Talks begin on restoration and mapping of Berkhamsted’s First World War training trenches – hemeltoday.co.uk
  • Google cameras map a walk through of Arlington National Cemetery – thereporteronline.com
  • Mapping Vietnamese sidewalk life and street vending – tech.mit.edu

3D Mapping

Education and Resources

  • The Best Free Data Mapping Tools – mediarundigital.co.uk
  • Top 10 satnavs – telegraph.co.uk
  • What’s next for GIS: The fourth dimension – gcn.com
  • From mapping to the weather – five apps to make life easier – independent.ie
  • New ‘Google Maps’ app for iPhone, iPad brings tricks, treats – examiner.com
  • Google Maps Engine Gets Free Tier And A Public Data Program To Help Governments, Other Orgs Surface Maps – techcrunch.com
  • Rwandan teens learn mapping skills with smart phones and tablet PCs – phys.org
  • Students learn digital mapping skills, target jobs – miamiherald.com
  • Place of the Year: History of the Atlas – blog.oup.com
  • Google Maps Engine Pro aids businesses in visualizing and sharing data – androidcommunity.com

Political and Social Cartography

  • Mapping America’s personalities: Scientists chart the most friendly, conventional and relaxed regions of the U.S. – dailymail.co.uk
  • Latino Population Maps Reveal Demographic Pattern Regardless Of Origin (GRAPHICS) – huffingtonpost.com
  • Mapping Mediterranean migration – bbc.co.uk
  • RTI International Web-Based Map Allows Users to See Intricate Patterns in U.S. Population – prweb.com
  • Geo-Mapping Used in Smoking Cessation Research – pddnet.com
  • Mapping the Glum Inequality of Happiness in the World – theatlanticcities.com
  • Alert: Gun Battle Ahead. A Mapping App To Navigate The Obstacles In Lebanon – fastcoexist.com
  • Suicide map reveals indigenous disaster – theaustralian.com.au
  • Mapping Out Global Slavery in 2013 – internationalpoliticalforum.com
  • Are visual crime maps necessary for campus? – dailyemerald.com

Vegetation Mapping

  • World’s first mapping of rare plants in the Americas – earthsky.org
  • A move to blend culture with maps to save vanishing forests – csmonitor.com
  • New Mapping Technology: Nova Scotia’s Powerful Ally in Protecting Valuable Forests – directionsmag.com
  • Google Street could help in the battle against invasive species – mnn.com
  • Study: Amazon Basin is home to about 16,000 tree species – cbsnews.com
  • Airborne lidar project creates national tree map for England, Wales – sparpointgroup.com
  • Laser mapping uncovers secrets of the New Forest – itv.com


Disaster Mapping & Management

CrowdSourcing and Social Media

Tourist Mapping

Art in Cartography

Cartography Lite

  • They Love Twerking in Tunisia: Mapping the World’s Most Popular YouTube Videos – foreignpolicy.com
  • Blocky Britain: how the country was mapped in Minecraft – pcpro.co.uk
  • Mapping the Zombie Apocalypse – cablefax.com
  • Google Maps Helps Man Reunite With Long-Lost Family in Heartwarming Ad – mashable.com
  • Tire wear shown with digital mapping – nascar.com
  • Apple Maps flaw results in drivers crossing airport runway bbc.co.uk


ICA-OSGeo awarded for support provided for the NASA World Wind Europa Challenge

The ICA-OSGeo Lab Network was awarded for the support provided for the NASA World Wind Europa Challenge.

The first edition of NASA World Wind Europa Challenge achieved its objective of inspiring ideas for building great applications that serve the INSPIRE Directive and uses NASA’s open source virtual globe technology World Wind.


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October’s Map of the Month is the Chang’E-1 Topographic Atlas of the Moon

Chang’E-1 Topographic Atlas of the Moon

Our Map of the Month series is back with a Chinese atlas for October: “Chang’E-1 Topographic Atlas of the Moon” published by the National Astronomical Observatories at the Chinese Academy of Sciences. It received the third jury prize in the category “Atlases” at the International Cartographic Exhibition at ICC 2013 in Dresden.

Zoom in and find more details here!

Category: General News