GI for Sustainability

GI & Sustainability III

5708.1 - Quantum Leap in Cartography as a requirement of Sustainable Development of the World

Wednesday, July 5
4:10 PM - 4:30 PM
Location: Maryland C

Sustainable development requires more and more effective management. Using of geospatial products like maps are essential condition of management on all levels, from local to global. Situational awareness as "the perception of the elements in the environment within a volume of time and space, the comprehension of their meaning and the projection of their status in the near future" (Endsley 1995) become mandatory for establishing sustainable development. Nevertheless, classic maps and map-based GIS produce aberrations in the perception inevitably, limiting the situational awareness and potential for the decision support. The source of these problems is fundamental issue of cartography. Classical cartographic method is the essence of all cartographic products, regardless of physical media and technological specificity. Well-known paper and digital maps as well as geographic information systems (GIS) used (until recently) same cartographic method. In accordance with the basic definitions of maps, there are three main rules of all cartographic products: 1) map projection; 2) generalization; 3) object layers. A map projection limits angle of view, or direction of sight. Generalization restricts viewing scale. Using of object layers distorts reality additionally.
Qualitative change in the realm of cartography occured in 2005, when new class of geospatial products, so-called "Digital Earth", was emerged with the start of famous Google Earth geoservice. Nevertheless, despite the ten-year history, scientific origins of Digital Earth are still a matter of debate. On the one hand, it is obvious that Digital Earth does not meet the definition of a geographical map and map-related products like GIS. On the other hand, it is obvious that Digital Earth belongs to the same scientific realm. Thus, it becomes possible to characterize the Digital Earth as a quantum leap in cartographic method, or true 'neogeography' (Turner, 2006).
Therefore it is possible to propose intensional definition of new method (Eremchenko, 2008) and universal typology of all cartographic products from ancient maps to Digital Earth (Eremchenko, Tikunov et al, 2015).
Basis for the typology are factors of aberrations: 1) direction of view; 2) scale; 3) object layers. Overcoming of these limitations requires: 1) free interactive changing of direction of view in 4(pi) geometry; 2) free interactive changing of scale; 3) visual representation of geospatial context without object layers. There are three classes of all geospatial products according with proposed scheme: 1) all maps and map-based GIS; 2) geoportals (like Google Maps) as a palliative; 3) Digital Earth as a digital environment that provides all possible freedom for universal representation of World without limitations of direction of view, scale and rigid object layers. These three classes represent a 'roadmap' of evolution of cartography through scientific revolution (Kuhn, 1970) of Digital Earth.
Study of scientific method used in Digital Earth is a vital task for maintenance of sustainable development. In particular, representation of geospatial environment in the Digital Earth and geoportals with the help of images instead of cartographic signs is a significant semiotic problem. We propose the concept of "zero sign" by analogy with the zero sign in mathematics for separation of signless images, from one hand, and iconic images, from another hand.
Effects of Digital Earth on sustainable development issues are discussed.

Evgeny (Eugene) N. Eremchenko

Scientific Researcher
Lomonosov Moscow State University

Eugene Eremchenko MA is the Head of Neogeography R&D Group (Protvino, Russia) and scientific researcher in Lomonosov Moscow State University (Moscow, Russia). Graduated from Kharkov State University (USSR, 1990). Eugene Eremchenko is the secretary of the ICA commission ‘GIS for Sustainable Development’ (since 2015). He is an elected member of the council of the International Society for Digital Earth (ISDE) (since 2016) and co-chair of the Outreach Committee of ISDE.


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Vladimir Tikunov

Lomonosov Moscow state university

Professor, head (since 1995) Laboratory of complex mapping and laboratory areas of sustainable development (2004),Lomonosov Moscow State University, Faculty of Geography. Deputy chief editor of the magazine "Vestnik Moscow University. Geography ", scientific secretary of the magazine« Geography, Environment, Sustainability », member of" Geodesy and Cartography "the editorial boards of journals," Regional problems of ecology "," Caucasian geo-Graphical magazine "New Russian Encyclopedia,« Geographical Systems. The Interna-tional Journal of Geographical Information, Analysis, Theory and Decision »,« GIS Asia / Pacific »,« GeoInformatica ».


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Irina Tikunova

Lomonosov Moscow State University

Iryna N. Tikunova graduated from Moscow State University in 1977 and defended her PhD in 1988. Irina N.Tikunova published more than 60 articles in Russia and abroad. Her current interests are human geography, geography of agriculture and tourism, applied mapping and GIS. She is scientific researcher (Faculty of Geography, Lomonosov Moscow State University) since 1990.


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Horst Kremers

CODATA-Germany Chair, Berlin (Germany)


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5708.1 - Quantum Leap in Cartography as a requirement of Sustainable Development of the World


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