About UN-GGIM: Africa

Following extensive consultation with geospatial experts from Member States, the Economic and Social Council considered the Secretary General’s report (E/2011/89) and adopted resolution 2011/24 to create the United Nations Committee of Experts on Global Geospatial Information Management. The United Nations Global Geospatial Information Management (UN-GGIM) initiative was established to create a formal geospatial information coordination mechanism involving Member States as the key stakeholders.

Such initiatives have recognized the significance of geospatial information in almost every area of government, commerce, academia and societal development. It is important to note that from the most local level, factors contribute to or have some effect on a broader scale to subnational events. This in turn influences national and subregional incidents, which continue to the regional level and ultimately contribute to global consequences, otherwise referred to as “the butterfly effect”. Geospatial information is a means to track, monitor and analyse any occurrence that has a location or temporal element, and more importantly to look forward, creating models and analysis of potential consequences from policy and events.

To achieve optimum results from geospatial information requires content to be available in a format able to be consistently applied to datasets at the next level. Interoperable geospatial information relies upon common frameworks, standardization and compliance adopted at every tier. Such a task is beyond any single nation or even region, and it is for these reasons that UNGGIM was established.

To date, regional entities contributing geospatial information to the global level have been initiated for all populated areas except Africa. The creation of UN-GGIM: Africa will build on the important efforts of CODIST-Geo, while simultaneously enriching the development and transparency of individual nations and Africa as a whole. These outcomes will ultimately benefit the African people through, among other things, better health care, infrastructure development and improved education.

Strategic guidance extended by the global initiative will be essential in implementing

UNGGIM: Africa, but the African entity will be able to mould policy suited to African issues and ensure that national bodies are capable of addressing their unique concerns.