Infrastructure for geographical data in Serbia: Astrium GEO-Information Services and IGN France International perform the final project review

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IGN France International, in partnership with Astrium GEO-Information Services, has supported the Serbian Institute of Geodesy (RGZ) in its efforts to reinforce the institute’s capacity to produce geographical information with a comprehensive system including infrastructure, data and geo-information services, all within the framework a vast transfer of know-how programme.

The project’s final review seminar took place in Belgrade last November in the presence of French and Serbian authorities. Serbia now possesses a high-performance geo-information centre able to reply to the needs of all the entities implicated in the country’s economic development and one that will contribute to Serbia’s integration into the European Union.

IGN France International, in partnership with Astrium GEO-Information Services, has supported the Serbian Institute of Geodesy of (RGZ) over a 3-year period in its efforts to reinforce the institute’s capacity to produce geographical information.  A comprehensive system including infrastructure, data and geo-information services has been implemented in order to generate and share a large variety of data and geo-information services, all within the framework of a vast transfer of know-how programme.

The teams at IGN France International and Astrium have progressively transferred their technologies, working methods and know-how throughout this technical assistance project, whilst adapting the information to the specificities of Serbia. This work has enabled their Serbian colleagues to create new topographic maps to a scale of 1/20,000 as well as maps on specific themes such as agriculture, hydrology, the environment and risk management. 
 
Application of the European Directive INSPIRE was the basis for defining all the maps and databases created by the RGZ. 
 
A verity of training sessions took place in France then in Serbia over several months, followed by practical work using real data and on the trainees’ own work stations. These sessions were followed by over a year of production assistance work up until the Serbian operators reached a level of complete autonomy. In total, almost sixty RGZ operators were trained up by French experts from the consortium.

The Serbian Institute held a conference in Belgrade on November 20th last year to mark the project’s final review. This seminar was organized around the project’s two main objectives: the importance for Serbia to create its own geographical data infrastructure and the need for Serbian teams to master their new know-how and work methodologies. 

RGZ’s new capabilities were presented to Mr Velimir Ilic, the Serbian minister for Transport and Infrastructures, the French ambassador in Belgrade, Mr François Xavier Deniau, as well as to the partners and users, both present and future, in private sector companies and institutions.

The RGZ’ s workshop coordinators also explained how they took on board the techniques and methodologies they were taught during the project’s three year period. They presented the programmes now used to create the products they are now responsible for: retrieving data using stereo pairs, entering vector data into the data base, editing digital maps, Lidar data, creating multi-themed maps, all essential for managing land in a better way, improving agricultural practices and natural resource management as well as protection of biodiversity.

The end of this project marks the start of a new phase for RGZ with the progressive increase in its production capacities, and the regular input of satellite data over the next two years. 

This project is one of the most important that has ever taken place between France and Serbia. It has been firmly supported by the French authorities and has broad implications in the present political context. The Minister of Transport and the French ambassador in Serbia have both underlined the undeniable success of this joint venture whose benefits “are of extreme importance for the process of integration into the European Union”.

 

See the project sheet for tehnical assistance NSDI  - Serbia

See our references - Cartography / NSDI

See the gallery photo