Today, the GIS-in-Central-Asia conference was launched in Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan. Dr Akylbek Chymyrov from the organizing institution ACA*GIScience welcomed participants from 12 countries to this annual event. Words of welcome were contributed by KSUCTA Rector Prof Akymbek Abdykalykov, Prof Dr Josef Strobl from the Austrian partner institution Z_GIS, Tempus national representative Gulnara Chokusheva and Stefano Ghielmetti from the main conference sponsor Trimble.
After a colorful and dynamic cultural welcome of songs and dances, Mr Ghielmetti offered a keynote with a range of case studies illustrating geospatial data acquisition and processing across many application domains.
The conference now moves on into its scientific program of presentations, bringing together GIS specialists across the Eurasian continent. Developing a network of experts into communities of practice dedicated to excellence in Geospatial Sciences and innovation in applications and technologies is the main aim of the conference, and substantial progress is being made in this direction.
GISCA 2012 also serves as a teacher training and capacity building opportunity for the Tempus 'GEM' project aiming at developing dedicated Geoinformatics MSc programmes in Kazakhstan, Tajikistan and Kyrgyzstan.