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Remote sensing for resources development and environmental management
Damen, M. C. J.

Symposium on Remote Sensing for Resources Development and Environmental Management / Enschede / August 1986
The Seventh International Symposium of Commission VII of the ISPRS, held at ITC Enschede, is the highlight of
the Commission’s calendar of events. The presented papers contained in volumes 1 and 2 of the proceedings come
from all seven of the Working Groups (three of which deal with technical aspects, and four with major fields of application).
Keynote addresses, invited papers and conclusions are to be published in the third volume. In addition, the proceedings
contain papers presented at special sessions on subjects of multi-disciplinary interest, geo-information systems being
of particular importance.
Responsibility for organizing the current four-year term (1984-1988) of Commission VII was given to the Netherlands
at the 15th ISPRS Congress in Rio de Janeiro in 1984, when joint hosts of the symposium were also selected, namely
the International Institute for Aerospace Survey and Earth Sciences (ITC), the Netherlands Society for Photogrammetry
(NVF) and the Netherlands Society for Remote Sensing (NKRS). Our symposium sponsor is the Netherlands Remote
Sensing Board (BCRS). In addition, substantial funds have been made available to participants from Third World
countries by the Netherlands Ministry for Development Co-operation, underlining its belief in the importance of remote
sensing in the context of surveying for economic development.
The selection of theme for this symposium, Remote Sensing for Resources Development and Environmental Management,
reflects our concern that the most advanced surveying methods now available to us should be put to practical use
where they are most needed, to serve humanity, with environmental issues rightly playing a dominant role.
Much has changed in the field of image interpretation since the first symposium of Commission VII was held at
ITC Delft in 1962. Non-photographic remote sensing has evolved, opening hitherto unused parts of the electromagnetic
spectrum for recording. The satellite imagery that is now available has revolutionized small-scale mapping procedures,
giving new impetus to monitoring of the environment and resulting in the introduction of image interpretation in fields
such as meteorology and oceanography. Digital methods of data recording and image enhancement have become common
The French SPOT satellite, launched earlier this year, marks the advent of the second generation of satellites with
higher spatial resolution and better general performance. Detailed surveys can be made using the stereoscopic capacity
of the imagery. Photogrammetric and cartographic circles are very interested in the wealth of information that is now
being produced continuously. There are new developments in data handling and compressing techniques, and increasing
emphasis is given to geo-information systems.
Technological progress on all fronts is reason enough for the wide range of the presented papers published here,
quite apart from a heightened awareness of social and environmental issues. These proceedings should indicate new
approaches, and open up new challenges and opportunities.
To all individuals who have in one way or another been involved in the preparation of this symposium and to
all organizations that have given their support, I extend sincere thanks. It is their hard work that has laid the foundation
for the success of this event. I am also extremely grateful to all who have sponsored us and provided other material
help. Last but not least, I wish to acknowledge everyone who has contributed to these proceedings. Thank you all.
President, Commission VII ISPRS