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Advancing the Pacific development agenda with smarter maps

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Suva, Fiji – Over 300 participants from about 30 countries will converge in Suva, Fiji next week to discuss advancements in Geographic Information Systems and Remote Sensing (GIS/RS) applications and their relevance to the management of resources in small Pacific Island countries and territories.

 

Bridging Information Gaps by Creating Smarter Maps’ is the theme of the conference jointly organised by the Secretariat of the Pacific Community (SPC) Fiji Department of Lands and the University of the South Pacific (USP), at the Japan ICT Auditorium, Suva from 16th to 20th November.

 

The largest of its kind in terms of Pacific Island state participation, the weeklong conference brings together users of the two applications from Pacific Island governments, consulting companies and the private sector to discuss the latest software, hardware, data and methods available and how they can be optimised to suit customer needs.

Geographic Information Systems (GIS) is a computer-based tool used to collect, combine and overlay information from up-to-date satellite images and data for the construction of easily understood maps, whereas Remote Sensing (RS) is the collection of information from sensors on aircraft, satellites, ships and other vessels. 

Both GIS/RS are increasingly being recognized as a powerful tool to inform policies and decision making by providing a visual framework for conceptualizing, understanding, and prescribing action. Timely and relevant imagery and data allows for rapid and accurate assessments of resources, land use, and environmental issues such as applications in disaster reduction and climate change adaptation.

The combination of the two applications can be used to make critical decisions about particular areas of interest, such as forestry, land use planning, fisheries, disaster management as well as infrastructure and urban planning.

The Pacific GIS/RS Conference has been held annually since 1999. Financial contributions from satellite data and GIS/RS software vendors, regional partner agencies, and various departments of the Fiji Government, have allowed the participation of Pacific Island nationals and partners at the conference.

 

MEDIA ACCESS:

Media are invited to all sessions of the conference which starts on Monday 16 October at 08.30 a.m.



 

Information about the conference is available online: http://gsd.spc.int/gisconference twitter: https://twitter.com/PacificGISnRS

Media contact:

Wolf Forstreuter, SPC GIS and Remote Sensing Specialist, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it or +679 332 2193

Dr John Lowry, Senior Lecturer, Faculty of Science, Technology and Environment, USP,  This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it .f or +679 323 2549

Zhiyad Khan, This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it

Last Updated on Wednesday, 13 April 2016 16:39  

Newsflash

The 19th Annual Meeting of the Heads of National Disaster Management Offices (NDMOs) of Pacific Island Countries and Territories (PICTs) is being held from July 01-3 at the Tanoa International Hotel in Nadi, Fiji.

Mosese Sikivou, Deputy Director of the SPC’s Disaster Reduction Programme, says the meeting will provide Regional Disaster Managers with the opportunity to discuss challenges and opportunities for institutional strengthening and capacity building.

Mr Sikivou says a main objectives of the meeting is to provide Regional Disaster Managers with an increased understanding of the Disaster Risk Management services and products available to them from SPC and other partner organisations

“The meeting also allows SPC, as the regional body mandated to coordinate Disaster Risk Management capacity building, the opportunity to learn from participants and to focus its work programme to better meet the needs of the group,” he says.

This meeting is also supporting preparation for the 2013 Joint Meeting of the Pacific Platform for DRM and Pacific Climate Change Roundtable from July 08-11, also in Nadi.

Mr Sikivou says the Disaster Reduction Programme will also continue to play a critical role in supporting member countries to integrate Disaster Risk Management and Climate Change into all relevant regional and national planning and policy measures.  He says that SPC’s commitment to integrate climate change adaptation and disaster risk management efforts will help Pacific Island countries to improve the way they identify and manage a range of risks that their communities are exposed to.