The 3rd EuroGeographics General Assembly (GA) was hosted from 5th ¿ 8th of October 2003 in the ancient and exiting city of Istanbul, by the General Command of Mapping (GCM) from the Ministry of National Defence of Turkey. Cadastral and land administration organisations were invited not only to participate as guests, but also and for the first time, were encouraged to join the EuroGeographics association as full active members. In total, 107 delegates coming from 46 organisations belonging to 35 countries have been registered for this annual event.

Some highlights:

More than half the current EuroGeographics members, ¿national mapping agencies¿ are responsible for Cadastre in their respective countries. However, building the European Spatial Data Infrastructure requires more and more integration of all ¿common reference data¿, therefore the 2nd GA decided last year in Frankfurt to consider opening EuroGeographics membership. New statutes were proposed at Istanbul, and adopted by a formal vote, that enable now Cadastre and Land Administrations to become member of EuroGeographics. The Centre of Registers of Lithuania was the first land administration organisation to be elected as an active member, while the Kosovo Cadastral Agency joined as an associate member. Another new active member was the Environment and Planning Authority of Malta, whereas our existing associate members from Czech Republic and from Greece upgraded to become active members.

Far from being a simple conference, the GA has developed a real working atmosphere, with delegates ¿ generally the heads of participating organisations ¿ split into small breakout groups, enabling interactive and lively debates on EuroGeographics¿ vision and strategy on technical and business interoperability.

The Management Board, which is responsible for implementing the strategy between two GAs, comprises two newly elected members: Knut Flaathen, Norway, and Richard Kirwan, Ireland, while the outgoing President, Joakim Oll¿ Sweden, is replaced by Dietmar Gr¿nreich of the Federal Office for Cartography and Geodesy, Germany.