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International Geographical Union

IGU E-Newsletter


# 8       April       2007
Union Géographique Internationale

Chief Editor: Ronald F. Abler - Associate Editor: Markku Löytönen - Editors: Giuliano Bellezza, Woo-ik Yu Managing Editors: Dawn Bissell- Publisher: Home of Geography

This issue is circulated to more than 1000 individuals and bodies.Announcements, information, calls for participation in scientific events, programmes and projects, are welcome. Please send them to

Contents of this Issue
  • 1) Message from José Luis Palacio Prieto

  • 2) Tunis 2008 Congress

  • 3) Vallega commemoration day by the Italian Geographical bodies

  • 4) SGI awards to Anne Buttimer and Adalberto Vallega

  • 5) International Polar Year started March 2007

  • 6) Saudi Geographical Society News

  • 7) IGU Great Explorers Medals Series

  • 8) Summary of forthcoming 2007 IGU events

    Celimontana Committee meeting
    Paradiso & Kellerman meeting 20-21 Feb
    Water sustainability book
    Himiyama visit
    Home of Geography publications

1) 1) Message from José Luis Palacio Prieto

The 2004-2008 period has witnessed many unanticipated changes for the IGU Executive Committee. The early passing last November of the IGU President, Adalberto Vallega, demanded that I, as First Vice-president, should now fulfil the duties of Professor Vallega for the remainder of his term of office, until August 2008. Professor Vladimir Kolossov was elected Vice President late last year after the untimely death of Vice-President Nikita Glazowsky in October 2005, and on 1st January 2007 Professor Woo-ik Yu was appointed Secretary General and Treasurer of the Union, succeeding Professor Ron Abler, who became Vice President upon the request of Professor Vallega. In April, all IGU Executive Committee members met in Tokyo to discuss the main items of the IGU agenda for the immediate future. Many initiatives had previously been launched by Adalberto and demand attention and continuity. Three of these include the Mediterranean Renaissance Programme, the Cultures and Civilizations for Human Development initiative and the promotion of the 31st International Congress in Tunis.
The members of the IGU Executive Committee (and Giuliano Bellezza) at Tokyo Komaba University
The members of the IGU Executive Committee (and G.Bellezza)
at Tokyo Komaba University
The Mediterranean Renaissance Program (MRP) was constructed on previous efforts to establish a Mediterranean regional network, focusing on the study of the region from all geographical perspectives, discussing the present problems of the Mediterranean, e.g., North-South economic collaboration, the need to mitigate geopolitical stress in the region, and encouragement of inter-cultural dialogue. The coordinator of the programme is Professor Mahmoud Ashour (
The Cultures and Civilizations for Human Development initiative was initially conceived by Adalberto Vallega with support from Professor Jean-Robert Pitte, President of the Sorbonne. The initiative seeks to implement approaches and actions aimed at valuing cultural identities and encouraging inter-civilizational dialogue and co-operation with a view to pursuing the social concerns included among the UN Millennium goals, and also supporting the strategies of UNDP. Materials concerning this initiative, including information on both the Action Plan and the Proposal for a UN International Year on Cultures and Civilizations for Human Development may be found on the Home of Geography website ( Vladimir Kolossov was appointed IGU-EC Liaison and Benno Werlen General Coordinator for the CCHD Initiative.

The 31st International Geographical Congress will be held in Tunis, Tunisia from 12 -15 August 2008 ( This event, one of the first major geographical congresses organized by the large Arab geographical community, will constitute an unprecedented opportunity for an intercultural encounter, an opportunity to bring together geographers from the entire world. We strongly encourage your participation. The Organizing Committee is led by Professor Adnane Hayder ( The Secretary General is Professor Ali Toumi (
J.L.Palacio Prieto, Woo-ik Yu and Valdimir Kolossov
José Luis Palacio Prieto, Acting President, Yu Woo-ik, recently appointed Secretary General and Treasurer, and Vladimir Kolossov, newly elected Vice President.

Many other issues are included on the IGU agenda. The three mentioned above are just a brief example of the seeds sown by Adalberto Vallega. All EC members are committed to bringing them to a successful harvest. However, this will not be possible without your active participation.
Friendly greetings,
José L. Palacio
IGU Acting President

2) Tunis 2008 IGU Congress

2a) 31st International Geographical Congress - Tunis, August 12th - 15th 2008
The 31st International Geographical Congress "Tunis 2008" will be held in Tunis from the 12th to 15th August 2008. It will take place in the Congress and Exhibition Centre of Le Kram, where the World Summit of the Information Society (2005) was held. It is a very large complex that can encompass a wide range of people from different backgrounds.
The motto of the Tunis Congress 2008 is: "Building together our territories". Other topics will also be addressed within the framework of the IGU programs (Cultures and Civilizations for Human Development; Mediterranean Renaissance) or the programs of international organizations, such as the International Year of Planet Earth (IYPE).

Scientific Program
The National Organizing Committee of the 31st International Geographical Congress (Comité Nationale Organisation Congrès, CNOC Tunis 2008) is currently finalizing the scientific program.
This program will focus on topical geographical issues, including applied geography, new trends in the teaching of geography, and new tools available to geographers. Particular attention will be given to geography in Africa, the Arab world and the Mediterranean.
The Congress will also serve as an opportunity for many IGU Commissions to hold their meetings in Tunis during or after the Congress in order to present the results of their work. This is a very useful opportunity for several commissions.
As per usual, proposals for new commissions will be examined at the Congress. The deadline for submission of these proposals is May 30th 2007.

The small size of the country and paradoxically the great diversity of its landscapes and dynamics make Tunisia a place with plentiful sites of scientific and teaching interest, which can serve as examples and support for geography courses and textbooks. The CNOC has identified ten scientific excursions, and at least one hundred sites are of considerable interest to various branches of geography.
Moreover, the Congress offers travellers the opportunity to enjoy basic and good accommodation in order to undertake individual excursions.

In parallel to the academic work, the Congress will host a fair with exhibitors ranging from the National Geography Committees to professionals in the fields of publishing, cartography and new technologies, and other operators who will be able to present and sell their products. Special exhibitions are also planned.

Social program
As a family tourism country, Tunisia offers many possibilities, such as seaside resorts, archaeological sites, medinas, museums, spas, thalassotherapy centres, and so on. The Congress will be a wonderful opportunity for the friends and families of participants to spend time discovering what Tunisia has to offer.

The CNOC has secured many facilities for congress participants and their companions. Accommodation for congress participants and their companions will be offered at the favourable rates in downtown hotels, and in seaside resorts of the northern suburbs. Special arrangements have been made for participants.
Transport between the accommodation areas and the Congress and Exhibition Centre, where the Congress will be held, will be provided at the beginning and the end of the day.
Registration fees, as well as the various details relating to accommodation, excursions and the social program, will be announced in the second and final congress circular, which will be issued in the near future.

2b) Mattei Dogan Foundation Prize to be Awarded at the Tunis IGU Congress
The first Mattei Dogan Foundation Prize in Human Geography will be conferred at the 11-15 August 2008 International Geographical Congress in Tunis, Tunisia. The recipient will be an internationally accomplished and renowned geographer who will receive the Prize in recognition of exceptional scholarly achievements in international human geography over an extended period of time or over his or her lifetime. The Prize will consist of a citation and a financial award of $4,000. The recipient will be expected to present a major lecture at the Tunis Congress on the subject for which he or she is being recognized.
Nominations for the Prize are due at the IGU Secretariat no later than 31 August 2007. Nominations must include: a) the nominee's complete curriculum vitae; b) a written statement of no more than 1,000 words documenting the nominee's qualifications for the Prize; and c) a minimum of three, and no more than five letters of recommendation solicited by the nominators from experts in the nominee's specialties who are capable of judging the nominee's qualifications for the Prize.
Those eligible to nominate candidates for the Prize are: a) chairpersons of IGU Commissions, Task Forces, and Special Committees; b) chairpersons of National Committees for the IGU from IGU member countries in good standing; or c) any three IGU Corresponding Members in good standing. Self-nominations will not be considered. Officers of the IGU are not eligible for nomination during, and for four years following the expiration of their terms of office.
The qualifications of nominees will be evaluated by an independent Prize Committee appointed by the IGU Executive Committee. Nominees will be evaluated solely on the basis of the nominees' sustained contributions to the advancement of theory, methods, and applications of human geography over an extended period of time.
The Mattei Dogan Foundation Prize in Human Geography was established in 2005 with the generous support of the Mattei Dogan Foundation. It will be awarded for the first time at the 2008 Tunis Congress, and thereafter at four-year intervals in conjunction with IGU International Geographical Congresses.

3) Vallega commemoration day by the Italian Geographical bodies

On 3rd May 2007, in Rome, the Italian Geographical Societies and Associations dedicated a day to the memory of Adalberto Vallega, President of IGU, following his untimely death on 22nd November 2007. In the morning, the event was hosted by the Consiglio Nazionale delle Ricerche (Italian National Research Council). Giuliano Bellezza gave the opening address, explaining that the intention was to celebrate the life of a lost friend, and not hold a formal memorial day. In fact, all the Presidents of the convening entities fully agreed, and all the speakers avoided, as far as possible, sad words.

G.Bellezza opens and A.Guerrini closes the first Session
G.Bellezza opens and A.Guerrini closes the 1st Session

In the second part of the morning, Sergio Conti chaired a session devoted to a series of speeches given by distinguished friends of Adalberto, such as Anne Buttimer, Paul Claval, Franco Salvatori, Vincenzo Guarrasi and Giacomo Corna Pellegrini (the text of the speeches of A. Buttimer, P. Claval and G. Corna Pellegrini are available on the Home of Geography website).
S-Conti, V-Guarrasi. G. Corna Pellegrini, A.Buttimer and P.Claval
Left: Sergio Conti, chair of te second Session, with V.Guarrasi, giving his speech. Right, G. Corna Pellegrini, A. Buttimer and P.Claval

In the afternoon a meeting was held at Villa Celimontana, chaired by Prof. Maria Tinacci Mossello, former President of the Società Italiana di Studi Geografici (Florence), dedicated to Adalberto Vallega's last published book: "Geografia del Tempo" (Geography of Time).

A.Turcom M-Tinacci Mossello, F.Salvatori
M. Tinacci Mossello, between A.Turco and F.Salvatori, chairs the aftermoon Session, in the SGI

At the end of the day Mrs. Bruna Vallega, Adalberto's widow, presented Franco Salvatori, President of the Società Geografica Italiana, with a CD containing the almost complete text of the last book which Adalberto was writing: "Geografia e Semiotica" (Geography and Semiotics). In order to publish this last legacy, Prof. Mauro Spotorno has been appointed to complete the text.

Franco Salvatori lifts the CD just received from Mrs. Bruna Vallega
Franco Salvatori lifts the CD just received from Mrs. Bruna Vallega

4) SGI awards to Anne Buttimer and Adalberto Vallega

In November 2006, the Board of the Italian Geographical Society (SGI) decided to confer honorary membership of the SGI upon the then IGU President, Adalberto Vallega, and IGU Past President, Anne Buttimer, in a ceremony on 28 March 2007. The passing of Adalberto meant that these plans had to be changed. While Anne received her award in March, as scheduled, Adalberto's diploma and medal were awarded posthumously to his widow on 3 May 2007.
4a) To Anne Buttimer
The text below is taken from the citation of the award, given on 28th March 2007: In view of her active, constant drive to promote the discipline and raise awareness of geographical science and knowledge, and her commitment to intercultural dialogue and to the fostering of productive interaction between natural and human sciences with regard to the fundamental issues underpinning the relationship between Man's activities and the Planet, the Board of the Italian Geographical Society is pleased to propose to the Assembly of Members, the appointment of Anne Buttimer as Honorary Member of the Society.
Anne Buttimer and Franco Salvatori
Anne Buttimer receiving her diploma from Franco Salvatori

4a) To Adalberto Vallega
The text below is taken from the award citation for Adalberto, as it was originally written a few days before his death, in November 2006, and presented to his widow on 3rd May 2007: President of the Association of Italian Geographers, and longstanding member of the Board of the Italian Geographical Society, Adalberto Vallega has put a great deal of energy into the worthy endeavour to establish vital links between the community of Italian geographers and the international geographical community. He has pursued this aim both within the IGU, in important positions, through to his appointment as Vice-president and then President, and within the bodies of the United Nations and other international institutions. These activities have also earned him awards from other quarters, such as the conferral of honorary membership of the Russian Geographical Society and honorary degrees from the University of Nantes and the University of Bucharest.
The wealth of his scientific work, in areas often of crucial importance to geographical debate, his efforts to collaborate with the international geographical arena, his unwavering, determined commitment to methods and epistemological innovation in geography, all make Adalberto Vallega an inevitable point of reference, both in Italy and abroad. The Board of the Italian Geographical Society is pleased and honoured to propose to the Assembly the honorary membership of Adalberto Vallega.

Mrs. Bruna Vallega and Franco Salvatori
Franco Salvatori awards to Mrs. Bruna Vallega the diploma and Honorary Member medal which the Società Geografica Italiana bestowed on Adalberto Vallega

5) International Polar Year started in March 2007

The International Polar Year is a large scientific programme focused on the Arctic and the Antarctic from March 2007 to March 2009.
IPY, organized through the International Council for Science (ICSU) and the World Meteorological Organization (WMO), is actually the fourth polar year, following those in 1882-1883, 1932-1933, and 1957-1958. In order to have full and equal coverage of both the Arctic and the Antarctic, IPY 2007-08 covers two full annual cycles from March 2007 to March 2009 and will involve over 200 projects, with thousands of scientists from over 60 nations examining a wide range of physical, biological and social research topics. It is also an unprecedented opportunity to demonstrate, follow, and get involved with, cutting edge science in real-time. To see detailed information, visit the website: http//

6) Saudi Geographical Society News

Recommendations of the SGS assembly and the accompanying meeting on:
"Tourism in the Ha'il Region- Saudi Arabia" (20-22/3/2007)

The assembly and the meeting were held at Almughwah Ha'il City Park and were organized by the Saudi Geographical Society, in collaboration with the College of Teachers in Ha'il city.
Upon the approval of His Royal Highness Prince Saud Bin Abdul Mohsen Al Saud, the Prince of the Ha'il, a meeting: "Tourism in the region of Ha'il: Future Vision" was held. Invitations to attend the meeting were forwarded by the SGS to members and to those interested in tourism matters. The meeting program included scientific sessions, a workshop, and a scientific trip around the Ha'il area. Several recommendations emerged from the meeting as follows:
First: uplifting telegrams of thanks and gratitude:
1-Participants in the meeting offered their sincere thanks and gratitude to His Royal Highness the Prince of Ha'il for his approval to hold the meeting in Ha'il.
2-Participants expressed their sincere thanks and appreciation to His Excellency, undersecretary of the Ministry of Education for teachers colleges for his agreement to the participation of the College of Teachers in Ha'il in the organization of the meeting.
Second: Symposium concluded with the following recommendations:
1-Pay greater attention to regional development planning in the area of Ha'il by enforcing procedures and mechanisms to accommodate the tourist potential in the promising area of Ha'il, whether natural, environmental or human. Attention should also be given to the definition of these possibilities locally and externally, and to coordination between the regional council, the Authority of Development in Ha'il, and the Tourism Authority of the city of Ha'il in accordance with scientific geographic terms, in order to avoid places that could pose a threat to people.
2-Promote investment possibilities in tourism in the area to attract investors from within and outside the region, according to the strategy based on the priorities which seek to diversify the cultural, historical, sports and environmental tourism product supply (especially with regard to the mountain environment and the desert).
3-Work on the establishment of natural reserves and heritage in order to maintain the general appearance and heritage sites in the region and resettlement of the vital area, especially in the Aja and Salma mountains, with the implementation of regulations and legislation on the conservation of protected environments to promote ecotourism.
4-Stimulate investors in tourism in the Ha'il area to adopt joint projects between the public and private sectors to attract private sector investments, and establish projects focusing on infrastructure related to the development of tourism potentials, and encourage owners of farms and parks regarding their organization and transformation into tourist resorts, without prejudice to aspects of the natural environment.
5-Promote elements of the tourist attractions which form part of the natural and environmental geographical characteristics of Ha'il region (such as the Zubaydah path, the Oqdah site, the site of Old Tappeh, Machar, Al Shuaibin and so on). Periodic sports, cultural heritage and economic festivals and celebrations should be encouraged in order to achieve the aims of the various services which seek to attract tourists, and the participation of the public and private sectors in their organization should be encouraged. Long tours to the region can be facilitated in the light of all regulations that are consistent with religious values of Saudi society.
6- Recruit tourist guides from the highly qualified and knowledgeable people of the region in order to provide tourists with the best possible introduction to the region. Here, the Chamber of Commerce and Industry in the region can be called on to provide specialized tourism courses. Attention should also be paid to the posting of signboards in appropriate geographic locations and consideration given to producing maps that indicate tourist sites, and warn against committing criminal acts and clarify the penalties for offenders, with security support in tourist sites. Specialized tourist security teams must be trained.
7-Work to raise awareness among tourists, using audio-visual media documentaries, in order to conserve natural resources and promote ecotourism, as well as spread tourism awareness among the local population in order to attract tourists, provide services to them and highlight the cultural heritage of the region. Research and scientific studies are important to analyze the behaviour of the population when dealing with tourists and to improve these behaviours.
8-Support research and studies relating to the development of tourism and promote the use of modern technology in these studies, and foster the role of the Saudi Geographical Society in the adoption of such studies on the Ha'il region and other regions of the Kingdom. Such studies should emphasize the degree of environmental protection and the social and economic development of certain tourist activities (such as Ha'il Rally - The Great Nufud Challenge). Attempt to limit negative aspects, and protect the local environment from arbitrary use (firewood or fertile soil collection, waste disposal, the use of modern means of transportation in areas that are not earmarked for customers).
9-Develop means of transport and communication, especially to and from areas of environmental and archaeological importance. Develop the concept of integrated transport (comprehensive ticket), and construct rest centres, establishments selling food and places to pray in these areas, all supplied with electricity, to enable tourists to stay for longer, even after sunset, and construct information centres at the main entrances to the area.
10-Develop complementary tourism programs between the tour operators so that the program consists of a single package including travel, accommodation and tours. We should call here on the Supreme Tourism Authority in the region to support integration and coordination between the various sectors of tourism in the entire region, and to promote tourism groups and scientific tours.
11-Support small-scale local industries and promote their role in the development of tourism in the region.
12-Coordinate with the Ministry of Civil Service to identify job qualifications and describe them in detail in line with the tourism sector, and provide new areas of work for men and women, with an emphasis on the need to develop female employment in the tourism sector under the independent female sector.
Third: The SGS Assembly concluded with the main recommendation:
A renewal of the SGS administrative board for a new period of three years. The board members are:
1. Prof. Mohammad Shawqi Ibrahim Makki: Chairman, King Saud University.
2. Dr. Mohamed Ben Saleh Rabdi: Vice-Chairman, Islamic University of Imam Mohammad bin Saud.
3. Dr. Abdullah bin Hamad AlSolea: The Secretary General of the Board, King Saud University.
4. Dr. Mohammad bin Abdullah AlFadel: The Secretary of Finance, Islamic University of Imam Muhammad bin Saud.
5. Prof.A. D. Ali bin Mohammad Shiban Arishi: member, University of King Khaled.
6. Dr. Mohammad bin Abdel-Hamid Mishkhes: member, King AbdulAziz University.
7. Dr. Meraj bin Nawab Merza: member, University of Um AlQura.
8.Dr. Anbarrah Bent Khamis Bin Bilal: member, King Saud University.
9.Mr. Mohammad Bin Rashid Ahmed: member, the Geological Survey Authority, Saudi Arabia.

7) IGU Great Explorers Medals Series

A French gentleman wrote to Anne Buttimer in January announcing that he had discovered in one of his relative's houses a complete series of silver medals dedicated to great explorers. Anne asked the Home of Geography to look for any relevant material in the IGU archives, and we found a considerable amount of information. The series was commissioned in the 70s by the IGU Commission on the History of Geographic Thought and minted in the USA by the world renowned Franklin Mint. The series of 50, sterling silver medals, was produced during the Commission Chairmanship of Philippe Pinchemel, and the IGU Presidency of Jean Dresch.
On the basis of this find and the information we provided, Anne presented a report to the IGU Executive Committee in Tokyo. The possibility of reissuing this series, together with new medals, was evaluated at the meeting, although no final decision was reached.

The Certificate of Authenticity accompanying Magellan's medal, which appears on an envelope sent from Mactan, the Philippines (where the explorer was killed). All the Certificates of Authenticity were signed by IGU President, Jean Dresch.

8) Summary of forthcoming 2007 IGU events

The following are events which will be held before the next Newsletter is issued. Clearly the list is far from complete, but we can only publish the ones which were notified to us. To see more details, please follow the links or visit the Home of Geography's website: (then choose Events 2007).

May 2007
  • 2nd International Workshop on Digital Approaches to Cartographic Heritage: Digitization of and Digital Access to Map Collections: Problems, Solutions, Implementation. Athens, 18-19 May
  • 15th ISCO (International Soil Conservation Organization Congress), Budapest 18-23 May
  • FP7 Information Day on "ICT for environmental management and energy efficiency", Prague, 21 May
  • 2nd South And Southeast Asian Association For The Study Of Culture And Religion (SSEASR) Conference on Syncretism in South and Southeast Asia: Adoption and Adaptation, Bangkok, 24-27 May
  • Cultural Approach in Geography Conference: "The Changing Cultural Geographies of Place, Region and Mobility", Oulu, Finland, 25-26 May
June 2007
  • 2nd Nordic Geographers Meeting: Meeting the Waves of Globalisation - Local, Regional and Environmental Response, Bergen, 15-17 June
  • Taking a hard look: Gender and Visual Culture, Pretoria, 21-22 June
  • European Meeting of University Professors Conference: Migration and Citizenship: the role of the metropolis in the European Union process of enlargement, Rome, 22 June
  • IGU Commission on Local Development - The dynamics of local and regional development, Second Global Conference on Economic Geography, Beijing, 24-28 June, e-mail Professor Michael Sofer:
July 2007
  • Conserv-Vision Conference, the next 50 Years, University of Waikato (NZ), 4-7 July
  • Digital Communities 2007, Mobility/Mindset/Maturity, Tallinn and Helsinki, 8-12 July
  • IGU Commission on the Sustainability of Rural Systems, 15th Annual International Conference, Agricultural and tourism products and local development, Rabat, Morocco, 9-15, e-mail Moussa Kerzazi:
  • IGU Commission on Geography of Tourism, Leisure and Global Change, 4th Globility Conference, Martinique, 10-13 July
  • IGU Commission on Geographical Education Symposium: Geographical Views on Education for Sustainable Development, Lucerne, 29 July - 3 August,
  • 4th Asia Oceania Geosciences Society (AOGS) Annual Meeting, Bangkok, 30 July - 4 August
  • IGU Commission on Climatology: Business meeting in Krakow (Poland), 7-8 July, hosted at the Meteorological Service by Prof. Zbigniew Ustrnul.


Celimontana Committee Meeting, Tokyo
The 2007 Meeting of the Villa Celimontana Committee (the Executive Committee of the Home of Geography) took place in Tokyo, April 4-8. Attending were the Home of Geography President, Markku Löytönen, the IGU representatives, Ron Abler and Woo-ik Yu and the Director, Giuliano Bellezza, who was also acting as representative of the Società Geografica Italiana.
The President said that, as the topics concerning the Home were already included on the Agenda of the IGU Executive Committee meeting, the Villa Celimontana Agenda could be fully discussed during the IGU EC Meeting, without allocating a separate session. The most interesting point was the Report presented by the Director, which is summarized here.
Some slight changes have been made to update it, with regard to certain activities at the Home after Tokyo.

Report of Activities at the Home of Geography 2006 - 2007
As regards the Archives, at the beginning of 2007, the HG asked the IGU bodies to send in all their outstanding material for the Archives. Due to the physical space limitations of the Home, only e-material was requested, and most of the Commissions answered positively. Now all commission newsletters and so on are being archived on CDs, and immediately posted on the website. The Archives also house a small library of books and journals. First steps towards cataloguing these have been made.
Anne Buttimer requested that a search be made in the Archives for material relating to the IGU Great Explorers Medals Series, issued in the 70s. This was in order to supply a French gentleman, who had found some of these medals, with relevant information. Material was scanned and emailed to both Anne and the gentleman concerned.

Home of Geography Publications Series.
Volume VII: Managing Water Resources in a Changing Physical and Social Environment by Peter J. Robinson, Tony Jones and Ming-ko Woo, was published in March 2007.
In the next few weeks the Home expects to receive the text of Volume VIII: Migration Mobility and Flows After Enlargement of the EU, edited by Dutch scholars Martin Van Der Velde and Ton Vannaersen.

Recent meetings hosted by the HG:
  • A 3-day meeting in November 2006 of SCAR (Scientific Committee on Antarctic Research), an interdisciplinary committee of the ICSU, which initiates, develops and coordinates high quality international scientific research in the Antarctic region, and on the role of the Antarctic region in the Earth system. There were 15 participants.
  • A 1-day meeting for the presentation of 3 volumes (written by A. Kellerman, K. Corey, M. Wilson and E.Einemann), was organised by Prof. Maria Paradiso, University of Sannio, together with the SGI and the IGU Commission on Geography of the Information Society (20 February).
    Left: participants to the SCAR Meeting. Right, A.Kellerman an G.Bellezza
    Left: participants in the SCAR meeting, relaxing on one of the terraces of the Home.
    Right: A. Kellerman presenting his book.

  • A 1-day meeting organised by A. Kellerman & M. Paradiso, with five participants (21 February).
  • A 2-day ICSU Geounions meeting on 21 and 22 April 2007, with the participation of 14 representatives of the Geounions consortium of ICSU Unions, with Ron Abler as IGU representative. They had an enjoyable and productive meeting prior to the 23-24 meeting of ICSU Unions, hosted by the CNR (Italian National Research Council).
  • Meeting organized in conjunction with the Società Geografica Italiana (SGI) and other Italian geographical bodies to commemorate the late Adalberto Vallega, on 3 May 2007 (see point 3 above).
  • On 2-4 May 2007 the "Post-enlargement migration, transit migration and the future of control: IMISCOE cluster A1 meeting too place at the Home of Geography". A brief report follows:
International migration, into and within the EU, is a fundamental issue of politics and policy today. It is set to remain so for years to come, for reasons that lie both inside and outside Europe. This will have far-reaching consequences for the member states and for the EU as a whole: how to manage demand and supply-driven migration, how to integrate the resident immigrants, how to adapt institutional arrangements to preserve social cohesion?
These are some of the questions that the EU-funded network of excellence IMISCOE (which stands for International Migration, Integration and Social Cohesion) tries to address. IMISCOE brings together some 400 selected, highly qualified researchers of 23 established European research institutes. Most of the work within IMISCOE is carried out in nine thematic clusters that deal with various aspects of the broad topic described above. Cluster A1 focuses on international migration as such. The process of migration, its conceptual delineation and statistical description as well as its control are at the centre of the A1-interests. In the first three years of the project the cluster members have produced three manuscripts that are currently awaiting publication: one concentrates on the concepts and measurements of stocks and flows used in twelve European countries; the second book provides a systematic overview of instruments of regulation; the third text introduces a typology of human smuggling processes.
The cluster A1 meeting in Rome focused on four areas of research: 1) post-enlargement migration (2004/2007); 2) the continuity of migration flows; 3) the future of migration control; and 4) transit migration. The meeting aimed to identify relevant questions within these broad areas that might guide the cluster work for the coming two years (the project will end in 2009). Based on the papers presented and the ensuing discussions, the participants agreed to work on the following issues: 1) What are the reasons for the emergence and the continuity of migration flows (geographical foci: Turkish migration to the EU and post-enlargement migration)? 2) What are the possible futures of migration control? 3) Is transit migration a useful concept for the social sciences and if so how can it be operationalised?

Members of the Imiscoe Cluster A1 in the "Sala Antinori", one of the meeting rooms
of the Società Geografica Italiana

Forthcoming meetings at the HG in 2007:
  • Mediterranean Renaissance Programme - Steering Committee Meeting in 2007, possibly before summer (depending on the amount of funds secured).
  • In the same period, and again depending on the amount of funds secured, the Home will host a meeting of the IGU - IYPE Scientific Themes liaison persons.
2006 Events organized by the SGI in conjunction with the HG:
  • 1 March 2006: 500 Years after Cristopher Columbus' Death: Are There Still Unanswered Questions?
  • 9 March 2006 -Workshop: Geography in the Internet Age
  • 14 March 2006 - Study Day: Landscape, Territory, Environment - Environmental Policies and Protection
  • 10 May 2006 - Fake Maps - Representation of the World amid Fantasy and Hoaxes
  • 13 June 2006 - Who Does The Sea Belong To? Debate on the geopolitics of the sea on the occasion of the publication of LIMES Volume 4/2006
  • 15 June 2006 - Book Launch: The Other Map - Female Explorers, Travellers and Geographers by Luisa Rossi
  • 20 June 2006 - Launch of the CD-Rom: The Various Geographical Scales of Development, Globalization and Localisms
  • 7 November 2006 - Study Day: Water and Energy - a Common Need for Sustainability
  • 18-19 December 2006 - Conference: Studies and Research Concerning Cristopher Columbus and the History of Knowledge of the World

2006 - 2007 Visitors to the HG
  • March 2006: Donald Zeigler (USA)
  • April 2006: Bruce Tamagno (Australia)
  • May 2006: Donatas Burneika (Lithuania)
  • November 2006: Mohamed Gul (Pakistan)
  • February 2007: Yukio Himiyama (Japan, organizer of the Hokkaido University of Education 2007 Geography Field Course in Italy ) visited the Home and the Società Geografica Italiana with a group of 12 students.
  • March 2007: Andrey Kushlin (World Bank)
The website continues to be constantly updated with announcements of forthcoming events, newsletters and so on from both IGU and non-IGU sources.
A section dedicated to the IGU-International Year of Planet Earth collaboration was created last year.
A new section dedicated to an e-Archive of IGU bodies' documentation has been created in the English section of the HG website, thanks to the considerable amount of material received from the Commissions.
In close collaboration with Adalberto Vallega, the majority of the HG's activities in 2006 were CCHD-related. This included researching and contacting potential supporters, revision of material, maintaining the Rosters of Supporters and Partners and acting as an information point.
Giuliano Bellezza and Anne Buttimer were invited to attend the Cairo Meeting of the IGU Commission on Arid Lands, Humankind and Environment (April 2006) and the 1st International Indian Geographers Meeting in Hyderabad (October 2006) in order to present the IGU and the CCHD.
In January, G. Bellezza met Don Franco Perazzolo, Secretary of the Pontifical Council for Culture, and Monsignor Anthony Machado, Secretary of the Pontifical Council for Interreligious Dialogue. Further talks have since followed.
G. Bellezza was invited to the Annual Assembly of the Società di Studi Geografici in Florence on 30th April, as first speaker of the Scientific Session dedicated to the CCHD Program, in memory of Adalberto Vallega. A participant suggested renaming the initiative: in his opinion the word "civilizations" was open to misinterpretation, whereas he would like to use a more geographical term, or concept, such as "territory". (At the IGU EC Meeting in Tokyo, this proposal was considered worthy of consideration).
The HG wrote to all members of the CCHD Management Team and Regional Promoters for their views on a new CCHD Coordinator to replace Adalberto Vallega. (During the IGU EC Meeting in Tokyo, it was decided to appoint Prof. Benno Werlen, Chair of the Commission on the Cultural Approach in Geography, as General Co-ordinator of CCHD, while IGU Vice President V. Kolossov was appointed CCHD - IGU liaison person).
The HG wrote to all members of the MRP Steering Committee for their views on a new MRP Chair to replace Adalberto Vallega, while M. Ashour is Coordinator. In Tokyo it was decided that as A. Vallega had appointed M. Ashour Chair of the Mediterranean Regional Network, replacing Maria Sala, no further changes would be made.
After many fruitless attempts seeking help from French colleagues, Dawn Bissell secured the assistance of some volunteer translators, and A. Vallega invited André Louis Sanguin to carry out the final revision, which he has been doing in a very diligent and helpful manner.
Since the last Celimontana Committee meeting, Newsletters 3-7 have been sent out to more than 1000 e-mail addresses (including Corresponding Members, ICSU members, all the IGU bodies, CCHD supporters and so on).
After an exchange of e-mails with the HG, Prof. M. Makki, President of the Saudi Geographical Society, had productive talks in Brisbane with A. Vallega and G. Bellezza, and now the Arabic version of the e-Newsletters and many IGU documents are available on the internet.
In the past, Adalberto Vallega provided the bulk of the material for each Newsletter. Without this input, how to gather material for the future Newsletters is of some concern.
Video Archive
At the suggestion of Anne Buttimer, the Home of Geography is now looking into the possibility of starting a programme of video interviews with prominent scholars who visit Villa Celimontana.

Home of Geography Publications Series: Sale
(A 10% discount will be applied when ordering 2 books, and 15% when ordering 3 books or more)
To obtain copies of the following volumes, please contact Dawn Bissell at: . Payment can be made by bank transfer or by credit card. Costs (incl postage and packing) are as follows:
Vol I - Human Mobility in a Borderless World? (2002) Ed: A. Montanari, (OUT OF PRINT)
Vol II - Food and Environment - Geographies of Taste (EU: € 13 / non-EU: € 19)
Vol III - Rights to the City (EU: € 18 / non-EU: € 24)
Vol IV - The New Geography of Human Mobility - Inequality Trends (EU: € 20 / non-EU: € 26)
Vol V - Migrations in Europe - The Four Last Decades (EU: € 13 / non-EU: € 19)
Vol VI - Gendered Cities: Identities, Activities, Networks - A Life-course Approach (EU: € 20 / non-EU: € 26)
Vol VII - Managing Water Resources in a Changing Physical and Social Environment (EU: € 18 / non-EU: € 24)

Brief presentation of the available books:
Vol II - Food and Environment - Geographies of Taste (2002) Ed: A. Montanari
The second volume in the Home of Geography Publication Series refers to the relationships between food, culture and environment. During most of history, food and beverages have been representative of environments and agricultural and cooking techniques, but also, and increasingly so, of cultures. We all eat as we can, according to our means, but also in relation to our dreams and what food represents for us. This is why food changes in time, in relation to techniques and fashions, but also in space, at which point the geographer becomes very interested. Today appearances are pointing to the standardisation of food, as to many expressions of culture, but also, paradoxically, to the reinforcement of foods, beverages and recipes rooted in a particular place, a geographical space, a region. This is very representative of what happens in all domains of cultural geography. "Living in Diversity", the motto of the Seoul 2000 IGU Conference, is not only a wish, a program, but also a tangible reality implying difficulties and the real opportunities to exchange our experiences of life in all their depth and nobility. The stakes of the battle between global food and local food are economic, but also cultural.
Vol III - Rights to the City (2005) Eds: D Wastl-Water, L. Staeheli & L. Dowler
The third volume in the Home of Geography Publication Series includes the presentations held at the "Rights to the City" conference of the IGU Commissions on Geography and Public Policy and Political Geography, which was held in Rome, from 29th May - 1st June, 2002. The 30 contributions of scholars from multiple disciplines interested in questions of governance, justice and rights in urban areas around the world discuss the following proposition: contemporary changes in economies and governance are creating increased inequality leading to a retrenchment of rights. Social groups within cities differentially experience the effects of these changes. The volume tentatively offers the following themes as foci of discussion:
Evaluation of urban social, economic and political trends;
Evaluation of competing theories and conceptualisations of justice and rights;
Changing governance structures;
New political movements, sites, and agents;
Differential access to spaces of the city;
New scalar linkages that change the relationships between cities, states and the international scale.
Vol IV - The New Geography of Human Mobility - Inequality Trends (2003) Eds: Y. Ishikawa & A. Montanari
In post-industrial society, mobility in the working and leisure related activities tends to take on subtle differences as far as place of work, free time, recreation, training and continuing education are concerned. Human mobility is sensitive to change in the organisational plan and logistics of a model which is mainly concerned with demand. The concentration of mobility flows occurs as a result of the devolution of production centres and the consumption of these products is the determining component of mobility, whereas in the past traditional political-administrative boundary trends were the factors which determined mobility. Inequality in human mobility is considered from the point of view of the divide between developed and developing countries, the unskilled/skilled perspective, and the relationships between internal and international flows. The fourth volume in the Home of Geography Publication series assembles the research carried out by the IGU Commission on Global Change and Human Mobility during meetings organised in three locations that are particularly significant for human mobility: California, where the metaphor "melting pot" has been replaced by the term "cauldron"; South Africa, during an IGU Regional Conference, whose position enabled the participation of many geographers from developing countries; and Mongolia, where migratory flows have until today continued to modify the ethnic and cultural map of the region.
Vol V - Migrations in Europe - The Four Last Decades (2004) Eds: C. Vandermotten, G. Van Hamme, P. Medina Lockhart & B. Wayens
The fifth volume of the Home of Geography Publication Series summarises the results of a European research project, founded by the European Commission, on interregional migrations in Europe (MIRE).
Starting from the Sixties, the study focuses on the changing causes and the new patterns of interregional migrations, paying special attention to the new waves of migrations and the new trends of the Nineties. The research crosses the geographical patterns with different logics of present-day mobility: ethnic and East European migration to the metropolitan areas, gentrification and migrations of executives, periurbanisation, rurbanisation, weak mobility of the early manufacturing areas, retirement migrations, etc.
A specific chapter is devoted to the migratory balances in the Central-Eastern European countries.
Vol VI - Gendered Cities: Identities, Activities, Networks - A Life-course Approach (2004) G. Cortesi, F. Cristaldi & J. Droogleever Fortuijn
This volume assembles a selection of papers presented at a conference organised by the IGU Commission on Gender and Geography held in Rome at the end of May 2003.
The gendered character of urban life and urban structures and the heterogeneous mix of people to be found in cities around the world have always fascinated feminist geographers. Today, the emphasis has shifted towards issues of identities, feelings and experiences. Women are now not primarily seen as "women", but rather as persons with multiple identities in terms of ethnicity, nationality, age, sexual orientation, and ability. The most important achievement of the seminar was the blurring of the boundaries between "first" and "third" world geography, between theory and empiricism, between identity and activity-focused research, and between quantitative and qualitative methodologies.
The papers highlight the problems, inequalities and contradictions of women's life in cities. They also clarify at the same time the improvements in the living conditions of women in many cities in terms of visibility, identity, activity, safety and network formation. Cities are highly gendered, but their gendered nature does not always imply subordination, exclusion, deprivation and sadness. Feminist activism and feminist urban research have resulted in some improvements in urban structures, urban life and urban policy from a feminist perspective.
Vol VII - Managing Water Resources in a Changing Physical and Social Environment (2007) Eds: P. J. Robinson, J. A. A. Jones & M-K. Woo
The seventh volume of the Home of Geography Publication Series refers to water sustainability and water resource issues.
Geographers are involved in all aspects of water sustainability and water resource issues, and in an immense variety of ways. The present volume provides only a sampling of the work of geographers and closely allied professionals, but is designed to indicate the range of research activities going on under the general heading of managing water resources in a changing physical and social environment. The geographical scope is wide, and the spatial scales range from individual lakes and reservoirs to whole nations. Topics run the gamut from the ethical underpinning of the work we do through explorations of the physical and chemical processes involved in water moving below, on, and above the surface of the earth, to studies of the roles of individuals and societies in using, mis-using or restoring that water. Approaches adopted range from qualitative discussions through standard statistical and mathematical analysis to complex process modelling. In short, it is a cross section of the kind of work geographers and environmental scientists do when involved with water.
The IGU Commission on Water Sustainability is a prime forum for the development and interchange of ideas and information about water, water resources, water sustainability, and related issues. Over the years it has organized a variety of meetings in a diverse number of places, many with specific themes, and from them has come a variety of publications. This book continues that tradition, but in a very different context. Rather than highlight and treat in depth a single issue, this volume celebrates the vast range of activities undertaken by Commission members and associates in addressing the many issues involved in providing safe and sustainable water to societies around the world. Most papers are based on information which was first presented at one of the Commission meetings. Often the objective of the original presentation was to stimulate discussion and to develop strategies for dealing with particular issues. Here we present the results of some of these efforts.

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