Singapore Geospatial Festival 2021 kicks off

By on 7 September, 2021

Image credit: ©

Singapore Geospatial Festival 2021 has returned for the third consecutive year with a virtual line-up of events and activities.

The event, which runs from 6 to 17 September 2021, is presented by GeoWorks, Singapore’s geospatial industry centre managed and operated by the Singapore Land Authority (SLA).

The Festival combines more than 70 webinars, workshops and talks will act as a knowledge-sharing forum on topics ranging from digital twins and innovation in maps, to catalysts for earth observation for business and educational exchange.

“The pandemic has fast-tracked Digital Transformation across the world, and geospatial technology has proven itself as a powerful took in helping us navigate a new way of life,” said SLA chief executive, Colin Low.

“Beyond developing geospatial technology and infrastructure, we are strengthening capabilities and cultivating talents towards a collaborative, adaptive and diverse geospatial ecosystem.”

According to Low, this year’s Festival aims to build geospatial interest across new segments to reach special interest groups and young students.

OGC meeting

The Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) 120th Member Meeting will be co-hosted by SLA at the Festival this year, marking the start of a three-year collaboration for the meeting to be held in Singapore.

The OGC’s international community of experts is focused on open standards and innovation through interoperable geospatial technologies. Festival attendees can register to attend many of the OGC meetings.

“OGC is very pleased to collaborate with SLA on advancing geospatial technology and best practices in the Asia-Pacific region and beyond,” said Scott Simmons, chief standards officer of OGC.

“We will join hands in establishing a number of industry events in the coming years to benefit the professional geospatial community in this region, starting with this year’s Singapore Geospatial Festival.”


GeoWorks’ GeoPartners and members, including Autodesk, Dassault Systemes, Esri, Hexagon, Geo Connect Asia, PTV Group, Synspective and Trimble, will also contribute to the line-up for Festival, with virtual conferences to update on use cases and applications across various sectors.

To help develop young talents, SLA will present the annual Regional Geospatial Youth Forum on 16 September as part of the Festival to build interest and awareness among young professionals and students from Singapore and participating ASEAN countries and regions.

SLA will also co-host the Young Geospatial Scientist workshop with Science Centre Singapore to develop geospatial knowledge among school children.

The Young Geospatial Scientist Badge programme is a collaboration between SLA and Science Centre Singapore. Launched in March 2021, it has since been accessed by almost 2,000 students.

“Today’s youths are tomorrow’s leaders. There is no question that youths are guardians of our planet’s future and have an extremely important role in our journey forward,” said Professor Lim Tit Meng, chief executive of Science Centre Singapore.

“In this world of rapid changes, young people need to develop a greater breadth of skills to thrive. Geospatial is a field that explores the connections between the community and the environment that can go a long way to help create and design meaningful solutions.

“We are proud to be partnering with SLA to expand our suite of ‘I Am A Young Scientist’ badges and continue advocating for the self- exploration of new technologies to unleash limitless possibilities.”

SLA’s 20th anniversary

In conjunction with SLA’s 20th Anniversary, a series of talks will be presented to showcase the use of maps, location intelligence and spatial history in heritage archival research as well as safety management for the community.

“Often times, old maps present information on site planning and can serve as a guide to looking into the background and history of a place of significance,” said heritage researcher Jerome Lim, who will be facilitating a virtual visit and presenting on the role of the Old Kallang Airport in Singapore’s aviation history. Old Kallang Airport is a State property managed by SLA.

Other highlights of this series will include:

  • a review of the works of John Turnbull Thomson, Government Surveyor of the Straits Settlements from 1841 to 1855, by mapping consultant Mok Ly Yng
  • a discussion on the use of ephemera to better understand the narrative of places and buildings by architect Dr Lai Chee Kien; and
  • an interpretation of past addresses, and colonial names of streets and places, in an ongoing study of Singapore’s heritage by the National Heritage Board’s researcher Ng Ching Huei.

Geospatial data is also used as a navigational tool to address mobility issues faced by the elderly and wheelchair users. Mapping our town with OneMap will be presented by Wee Kit Bian, chief enabling officer of BLK.SG, as a project to teach users how to use Interactive to find barrier-free routes or covered linkways for greater travelling ease.

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