Tuesday 18th March saw the annual conference of the Association for Geographic Information (AGI) in Scotland, promoting geographic information as a vibrant sector of the British economy. This exciting multi-stream event attracted around 170 attendees from industry, local and national government, and academia to the magnificent surroundings of Glasgow City Chambers. The conference was themed around ‘Future Cities’ and how geography and geographic information could contribute to better planning, intelligent cities and tackling social problems.
More than twenty GIS Masters students travelled through from Edinburgh to attend the event, accompanied by Programme Director Bruce Gittings, who is also Vice Chair of the AGI in Scotland. The students attended the conference sessions and were able to take part in the workshops. They were able to extend their knowledge of the industry and ‘network’ as they approach the time when they will be seeking jobs.
Delegates were welcomed by Cllr Gordon Matheson the Leader of Glasgow City Council, with other speakers including Iain Paton, a member of the delivery team for the Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games and television personality Prof Iain Stewart, who very effectively linked the themes of building design, with his own interests in geology and the relevance of geography.
Bruce Gittings also hosted a very successful visit to the conference from pupils studying geography at Douglas Academy in Milngavie, along with Erica Caldwell from the Royal Scottish Geographical Society, and Abigail Page and Val Marlowe from AGI. Pupils were introduced to the GI industry by Bruce, who stressed its importance in providing employment to graduate geographers. The pupils were delighted to meet Iain Stewart, who took time to explain why he thought industry links were important and answer their many questions. Iain said “This is exactly what AGI and RSGS should be doing – mapping out the future for young geographers”