Why a new ICA commission?

Our primary aim in establishing this new Commission is to provide a forum for those whose primary focus is the design, production and use of topographic mapping and related geospatial data products. In particular, we intend to facilitate the sharing of best practice in how producers of topographic mapping can better serve the interests of their users in an environment of changing methods of production and dissemination (e.g. from crowd-sourced design to geoportals to print-on-demand).
While it is no longer the sole preserve of state-run mapping institutions, we see the Commission as providing a much-needed interface between national mapping organisations and the international research community by identifying areas of collaboration and establishing links that foster the development and publication of product-focused research.Indeed, topographic mapping carries global significance and we are particularly keen to identify and engage with regional experts who would be willing to work with us in promoting our aims around the globe. Topographic mapping enjoys a rich heritage of theoretical and practical knowledge which we intend to consolidate through the creation of an online glossary, FAQ, and research bibliographies. To facilitate access for research and networking, our Commission website will also provide a global reference point for information on the producers and details of topographic mapping, including contact information and their history and products.
As a new Commission, our first priority is to establish our membership, which should be drawn widely from producers and users of topographic maps. To publicise the new Commission we issued a call in ICA News (No.65) for invitations to sign up via our website for news and updates, which was accompanied by an introduction to the new Commission and its Terms of Reference. We are excited at the prospect of launching this Commission and bringing new members and new ideas to the life and work of the ICA.