A new Conference title: ‘The Cambridge Conference for National Mapping Organisations’ and a completely new remit to encompass national mapping organisations from around the world. 78 nations were represented.

The opening session included two keynote papers, the first of which demonstrated the need for consistent core datasets for the entire world, to enable assessment and comparison of opportunities for investment, environmental protection and sustainable development.

Another innovation was the arrangement of two workshop sessions to discuss, in a more compact and less formal body, key issues of the day.

The Hotine lecture covered some particularly interesting ground, examining the progression of the industry going from being government driven to market driven, from colonialism to internationalism, from military domination towards civilian management, from measurement science to information science, from maps and charts to land and geographic information systems and from labour intensive to capital intensive.