On 23–24 November the entire Executive Committee met for the first joint working meeting with the newly elected Commission chairs (List of Commissions). Altogether, 22 out of 28 Commissions were present during the meeting in Gent, either through their chair or vice-chair.
On two exciting, busy working days Commission representatives and ICA officials got to know each other (better), learned about administrative guidelines and procedures for a smooth cooperation and dedicated themselves to common strategic tasks for the next four years. The President pointed out once more the important role that Commissions play in our society – it is through commissions, where the actual thematic work of ICA will be done that finally brings forward our discipline, advances cartography as a science and sets the standards for the quality and usage of our work.
During the first day, the EC members and Commission representatives actively discussed «burning issues» for all commissions and how the society and members in general could even better help commissions to achieve their goals. The second day was followed by a presentation on the new ICA publication on the UN Sustainable Development Goals which was the successful result of a joint commission effort in the past. The final topic to conclude the meeting consisted of an intense discussion and group work on the best means and ways to join forces between commissions, which lead to already very concrete steps for the near future.
The next joint meeting of the Executive Committee and the ICA Commissions will take place on 19 September 2020 in Vienna on the occasion of the EuroCarto 2020 conference. ICA President Tim Trainor and Secretary General Thomas Schulz already look forward to this meeting and seeing the first results of our work commences in Gent.
We thank everyone present for making the long way to Belgium and actively participate in this fantastic meeting!