The International Geographical Union’s Applied Geography Commission
focuses on improving understandings of the basic research-applied
research interface and the needs of geographers based in universities,
government, business, and non-governmental organizations for the
services provided by professional organizations. It also considers
the ways that the IGU and other existing geography organizations
might better serve the enormous population of geographers in business,
government, and NGOs.
Geography Commission - 2007 Annual Report
Geography Commission - February 2009 Newsletter
IGC AGC Special Sessions for PRSCO - July 2009
Geography’s contributions to applied science are enormous but
they are not always recognized. This is due at least in part to the
fact that geography’s professional institutions (e.g., the
IGU) are much more effective at meeting the needs of university-based
geographers than the needs of geographers operating out of other
settings. Perhaps the biggest disconnect is between our institutions
and geographers in the private sector although some will argue that
geographers in governmental organizations and NGOs are equally isolated.
Reasons for these gaps are not fully understood but two possible
explanations are proposed. First, our professional organizations
may present themselves in ways that are more welcoming to university
based professionals than to those based in private sector, governmental
or non-government organization. Second, our organizations may make
the “value added” by our conferences and organizational
services more obvious to university administrators than to elected
officials and public and private sector managers. These potential
explanations and others deserve to be investigated.
- Develop a network of professional geographers
and a system of information on applied geography in coordination
with the Roma IGU
with the IGU Commissions and Study Groups.
information on NGOs. International organizations, private
firms, and public agencies using geography, working in partnership
with other IGU Commissions and study groups interested in applied
geography. Information gathered includes addresses and emails for
key persons and descriptions of the geographics skills and perspectives
- Organize meetings with the goal of producing
publications on what geography can offer to public and private
on geographers views on sustainable development.
Long-Term Goals and Potential Benefits:
benefits of better bridging the “town-gown gap” include:
- Enhanced opportunities for geographers in academic settings
to contribute to the solution of professional practice problems
faced by geographers working in non-academic settings.
interest in academic geography and its membership organizations
by geographers in business, NGOs, and government.
access to employment in business and government and in NGOs
for graduates of university geography programs.