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Welcome to our latest newsletter! 

From the Chair:

Zoom! That was 2017 flying past – and here we are ready for a well-earned festive break I’m sure! The last few months have been exceptionally exciting for both AGI & the geospatial community as a whole.

On an AGI front, you can see highlights from recent activities – I would particularly draw to your attention the minutes from our AGM, during which I was pleased to share a summary of AGI achievements over the last year. We have achieved lots – from signing a strategic alliance with RGS-IBG and the recruitment of our first Senior Public Affairs Manager; putting in place a well-managed office contract to efficiently support our members and volunteers; to a diverse and exciting range of events and activities across the UK delivered by our members.

During 2018, reflecting our need to both reach outwards and continue to strengthen the Association, Council will focus on two main priority areas – the further support and development of our Public Affairs and Advocacy work and strengthening the engagement with our members across the UK. There are opportunities for all members to get involved – please complete our membership survey or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. if you are able to support our work.

There has been a lot of excitement in our community over the last weeks, following the announcement of the Geospatial Commission which was promptly welcomed by AGI. Having the value of geospatial recognised in the UK Budget Statement is a huge win for all of us, who have been driven by our collective mission to see the benefits of geographic information maximized for government, industry and citizens.

We now have an exceptional opportunity to engage with Government over the next weeks and months to ensure that the Geospatial Commission, through its co-ordination and strategic oversight of geospatial in government, will deliver real value. You can be assured that AGI Council continues to stay close to these developments.

It’s been a real privilege to Chair AGI during 2017 – I want to add a personal note to thank all of our members (both individuals and organisations) who have supported AGI and enabled us to achieve so much together. I firmly believe that during 2018, as we continue to build and strengthen our network, we will be well placed to innovate and engage in new ways to further our mission.

Wishing you all a peaceful Christmas & prosperous New Year!

Abigail Page

AGI Chair


What do you want to see in 2018?

AGI is a Membership Association – we’re driven by you. As you wind down for Christmas with your mince pie in hand, please take a few minutes to reflect on what makes AGI valuable for you what would make it more beneficial and how we can do more in 2018. 

Help us shape the AGI of the future. This is YOUR survey link – it’s a short questionnaire (a couple of minutes, very easy), but your opinion really matters to us – and we hope you’ll take the survey today, please!


The gift that keeps on giving - GeoCom17 – Smart Geospatial

Our annual conference took place on 26th October, at the Royal Geographic Society (with IBG) in Kensington, London. We describe GeoCom as ‘the members’ event for all’, and this year’s event was an excellent reflection of the diversity and range of specialisations that we’re seeing come together under the umbrella of geospatial information.

We’ve now made available the GeoCom Trip Report to all our members (log in first to access it).

This summary of the day is packed with industry insight, thought leadership and details of our AGI Award Winners too! This is the first time we’ve produced this style of output for our members – take a look and let us know if you find it useful!


Put these dates in your 2018 Diary!

AGI GeoCom will return on 8 November 2018– save the date!

The AGI Scotland Annual event is on 27 February 2018 at the Lighthouse in Glasgow. A special ticket release for members on 5 January will see the first 25 tickets available for only £25 – be quick off the mark!


Taking a global perspective - UN-GGIM Workshop

A good number of members attended the information workshop on the United Nations programme to improve Global Geospatial Information Management (UN-GGIM) on 25th October. 

Speakers described the evolution of UN-GGIM as the apex intergovernmental mechanism for making joint decisions and setting directions regarding the production, availability and use of geospatial information within national, regional and global policy frameworks. And they heard how the UK, led by Ordnance Survey, HMLR and ONS, are contributing to improvements in the use and usability of geospatial information to address global challenges, including in the development agendas.

Attendees heard how individuals and organisations in the UK can contribute through the academic and private sector networks. A recording of the meeting is available here and there are links to how to get further involved in the event summary.

Dave Lovell


Recent Activities:

 

  • Having recently held the 2018 Council Elections, the AGI are delighted to welcome 6 members newly elected to serve the council for 3 years as of January 1st, 2018. With huge congratulations to Merryn Henderson, Dave Lovell OBE, Tim Marston, Denise McKenzie, Katherine Smyth, and Alison Wilson, we look forward to working together to develop as an organisation in the forthcoming years.
  • We're pleased to inform members that our recent recruitment exercise with RGS-IBG to find a new Senior Public Affairs Manager was successful. Tom Flude, who was previously leading the Public Affairs work at TfL, will join us in January. Tom brings a wealth of experience which will now help us in our joint advocacy for GI with RGS-IBG. Please look out for more details in the press in the New Year.
  • AGI Council member, Dave Lovell, compiled a response to the Government’s call for evidence on improving the home buying and selling process. Thank you to all who provided input, you can view the response here.

 

  • AGI-NI held their premiere GI event: You are where you live: the prevalence, influence and benefits of location data in the public sphere, in Belfast on November 16th. The day before, (GIS Day!), AGI-NI also hosted a pre-conference warm up which included a series of GI workshops (LiDAR, Leaflet, and Missing Maps)  

This year’s conference welcomed excellent speakers from different sectors of the geospatial industry, including Charles Kennelly (ESRI UK) who explored the GI industry’s journey to date and the opportunities and challenges ahead, Mark Stileman (Ordnance Survey) who offered insights into some of OS’s collaborative research projects, and Ciaran Kirk (IMGS & AGINI Vice Chair) who discussed how Smart Cities are using Safe Software FME to engage with their citizens (…and many more). Full speaker biographies can be found here.

AGI-NI would like to thank the events sponsors; IMGS, ESRI-Ireland, Leica Geosystems, Belfast City Council, Mallon Technology, 1spatial, Ulster University, Landmark Solutions, and Geolytical, and the event organisers, for all their support.

  • The AGI Scotland Edinburgh Earth Observatory seminar series continues, with the most recent presentation from Ed Parsons drawing an audience of over 100 (standing room only!). Next seminars are presented by David Henderson, MD at OSGB and Julie Proctor, Greenspace Scotland. See the programme online here.

In the news: 

 

  • The winner of UK Statistic of the Year was announced as “The percentage of the United Kingdom land area that is densely built upon” (0.1%) from A Land Cover Atlas of the United Kingdom by Professor Alasdair Rae, from the University of Sheffield. Congratulations Alasdair!

We’ve released a variety of press releases this month from Airbus, Europa Technologies, thinkWhere, OceanWise and Cadcorp. These provide a great insight into what our corporate members are up to. We always like to highlight interesting industry news so follow us on Twitter!

As ever, if there’s anything you would like to share with the AGI community, be it a personal insight into the industry, a corporate member’s event or press release, then get in touch. Send your contributions to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. but no fake news please!

Thanks for taking some time to stay up to date with us.

Best wishes, 

The AGI team

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