Geospatial Global Forum: Empowering Billions


GODAN Operations Director Sam Compton attended the 2019 Geospatial World Forum in Amsterdam from 2-4 April. The Forum is a platform for the geospatial community to gather and share the latest innovations in the sector. 



This year the Forum explored how geospatial and location-based technologies can be used as a contributory tool in helping to end world hunger by 2030, the second of 17 UN Sustainable Development Goals.

Mr. Compton took part in a panel discussion on policy and data infrastructure strategies for bridging the Geospatial divide. He highlighted examples of open data policy initiatives supported by GODAN, including the development of cross-border open data policies. He underlined the growing importance of the Nairobi Declaration, a collaborative international agreement to promote multilateral data sharing. The Declaration is currently being considered as a model for other regions.

The Geospatial World Forum is designed and run by a partner network of about 50 organisations accross the World. Those attending the forum come from a range of related areas of specialism, including; public policy, national mapping, multilateral and development organisations, scientific and academic institutions.

This Forum was the fourth in the annual series, focused on big data and robotics, amongst other innovations. These are bringing significant attention to geospatial technology as it becomes ever more user friendly, increasingly allowing businesses and individuals to benefit from its use. Yet, as Compton observed, the challenge remains: How to get this valuable geodata into the hands of those who need it the most – smallholder farmers who produce most of the food for the poorest regions of the World.