Monday, 22 June 2015

World Hydrography Day - The Sun Always Shines

Is it just me or is it a bit odd to hold World Hydrography Day on the same day that (in the UK at least) the news is captivated by sunrise chasers at Stonehenge and the consequential traffic jams on the A303.  OK, perhaps it's just a British thing.

World Hydrography Day was instigated in 2005 and first celebrated on 21 June 2007 from what I can see; so we're onto year 9 now.  The themes get broader each year which I like: hydrography is more than just depth measurement, or even safety of navigation.

As listed in

Hydrography - much more than just nautical chartsWHD - 2014
Hydrography - underpinning the Blue EconomyWHD - 2013
International Hydrographic Cooperation - supporting safe navigationWHD- 2012
Human Ressources - The important element to the success of hydrographyWHD - 2011
Hydrographic Services the essential element for maritime tradeWHD - 2010
Hydrography Protecting the marine environmentWHD - 2009
Capacity Building, a vital tool to assist the IHO in achieving its mission and objectives.WHD - 2008
Electronic Navigational Charts (ENCs); an essential element of safety at sea and efficient maritime operationsWHD - 2007

The theme for this year is "Our seas and waterways - yet to be fully charted and explored" which I suspect was influenced by the press coverage after the MH370 disappearance.

I can't get overly excited about these events.  I'm probably not convinced about the effect they have on those we are trying to reach - the movers and shakers of government and industry who influence policy and spend on the maritime environment. Perhaps it's because I hear little about them - and I'm someone who is IN the industry.  I suspect those outside hear even less.

But that's not a reason to give up.  In the same way that the International Cartographic Association is running International Map Year in 15/16, the steady drip drip of map, geomatics, charting, navigation events may keep the general public just a little bit aware of the geospatial industry.  Every industry is important to those in it.  We just need to work out how to engage with non-surveyors, to speak their language, so that they too understand our relevance and how much we contribute to Earth PLC.

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