Abeni Aso-Oke

World Surveyors’ Day: Surveyor Yusuf lists ways to navigate globalisation challenges. By Lai Gidado

World Surveyors’ Day: Surveyor Yusuf lists ways to navigate globalisation challenges

Abeni Aso-Oke

Abeni Aso-Oke

Surveyors have been admonished to embrace digital technologies such as Geographic Information Systems (GIS), Remote Sensing, and Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS) to navigate the challenges posed by globalization.

The above-listed tools would enable surveyors collect, analyze, and visualize spatial data more effectively, regardless of geographical boundaries and would enhance the efficiency and accuracy of surveying operations.

Abeni Aso-Oke

These were contained in a paper presented by Surveyor A.O Yusuf FNIS, titled; “Surveying and Globalisation”, to commemorate the World’s Surveyors’ Day, on Thursday 21st March, 2024 in Akure, the Ondo state capital.

Describing Globalization as the growing worldwide connection and interdependence of people and countries as a result of increased trade and cultural exchange, he added, that It speeds up movements and exchange of human beings, goods, services, capital, technologies and cultural practices all over the planet earth.

The Paper further disclosed, that Globalization has accelerated in the past decades or so largely because of huge advances in technology leading to virtual disappearance of divisive blocs of cold war, breaking down of trade barriers, integration of major financial markets, cheaper and easier travels.

It added, that while Globalization has brought about numerous benefits to the field of land surveying, it has also presented challenges.

“The increasing complexity of land transactions and property rights requires Surveyors to navigate diverse legal and regulatory frameworks adding that competitions from multinational surveying firms and outsourcing of surveying services to lower-cost regions can threaten the livelihoods of local surveyors.

“Globalization has also produced effects that are more universally worrisome. Expanded transportation networks facilitate not only increased trade but also the spread of diseases.

“It has facilitated the emergence of trans-national land acquisitions, presenting new challenges for surveyors in terms of jurisdictional boundaries and regulatory frameworks.

“Undesirable trade, such as human trafficking and poaching, has flourished alongside legitimate commerce.

Moreover, the pollution generated by the world’s modernization has resulted in global warming and CLIMATE CHANGE, threatening Earth’s habitation.

” The surveying profession in different parts of the world, report a range of major problems; including low student numbers, closure of surveying courses, an aging teaching profession, inadequate job opportunities in some locations and an insufficient supply of graduates to fill the vacancies in others.

“The standardization of surveying practices and regulations across different countries can be complex and time-consuming.

“Cultural and language barriers may impede effective communication and collaboration with clients and stakeholders from diverse backgrounds.

“Since Technology (phones, GPS etc) is open to everyone, the quality of geospatial information available in the Open Source is very much affected by crowdsourcing”, it stated.

Providing more solutions to navigate through these challenges, the paper enjoined Surveyors to prioritize continuous learning and professional development to stay abreast of global trends and best practices.

It also added, that participating in international conferences, workshops, and collaborative projects can broaden horizons, foster knowledge exchange, and build networks with peers from around the world.

“Embracing diversity and cultural sensitivity is also essential for effective communication and collaboration in a globalized environment and adapting to the changing landscape of Globalization to remain relevant and effective in the modern era.

While stating that the changes in the professional arena demands changes in the associated educational programmes, it stressed, that there should be a good relationship between polytechnic/monotechnic and university based surveying education and the wider world of professional surveying practice in order to move with the advancement brought about by globalization and world’s development.

“There is need for Surveyors Council of Nigeria (SURCON) and Nigeria Institution of Surveyors (NIS) to be more proactive in breaking the dichotomy between Academic and Professional Practitioners, since all can stand to gain from the union of the two (i.e. academia and professional practice).

“The handling of the Mandatory Continuing Professional Development Program (MCPD) needs to be improved on in order to be made more effective”, the paper stressed.

Dignitaries at the occasion includes-
Surv Mrs. F H Fakorede Fnis, Chairman of NIS in Ondo State, Surv Ogbeye E. Minis, Chairman Ondo State Practicing Surveyor, Surv M O Ibitoye Fnis, NIS President , Surv Agunbiade Fnis, former Ondo State Surveyor General , Surv Ayo Fadipe Fnis , immediate past Chairman Ondo state board of Fellows, Surv H Adegbenro Fnis, former Ondo state Surveyor-General and Surv Olofinte Fnis chairman board of fellows and a host of others.

See full text of the lecture Bellow

SURVEYING AND GLOBALIZATION
A PAPER PRESENTED BY: SURV. A. O. YUSUF (FNIS)
TO COMMEMORATE WORLD SURVEYORS’ DAY
ON THURSDAY 21ST MARCH, 2024
1.0 INTRODUCTION:
1.1 GLOBALIZATION
Globalization is the term used to describe the growing worldwide connection and interdependence of people and countries as a result of increased trade and cultural exchange. It is speeding up movements and exchange of human beings, goods, services, capital, technologies and cultural practices all over the planet earth. Globalization has accelerated in the past decades or so largely because of huge advances in technology leading to virtual disappearance of divisive blocs of cold war, breaking down of trade barriers, integration of major financial markets, cheaper and easier travels (See Figure 1.0). It has produced series of consequences which are economic, political, cultural, and environmental and has affected many professions. The process of global integration is probably irreversible since people will always turn on their TV sets, use mobile phones and computers and many are travelling to other lands. It is impossible for a nation to isolate itself completely from the rest of the world politically, economically and socio-culturally. Thus, the world now is often referred to as a ‘GLOBAL VILLAGE’.

 

Figure 1.0: The technology behind globalization

(Source: Awake journal May 2022)

Figure 1.1: Areas of Influence of Globalization

1.2 LAND SURVEYING / SURVEYING & GEOINFORMATICS (GEOMATICS)
Land Surveying is a technique used to make accurate measurements in determining both man-made and natural features, positions of points, the distances and angles between property boundaries accurately. Hence, Surveying is a discipline that encompasses all methods for measuring, processing and disseminating information about the physical earth and our environment.
Fajemirokun (1988) defined surveying as that branch of geoscience which deals with the location of points on the earth surface, the graphical representation and visual representation of such points and the determination of the figure of the earth and its gravity field using the method of applied mathematics and physics as basic tools.
Here Surveyors were assumed to be confined to taking measurement with little or no concerns for capacity to process, produce and manage the necessary geospatial data and information that will be useful ingredients in addressing geospatial decision problems of today’s world in all ramifications, especially of the globalization effect and achievement of Sustainable Development Goals in many nations.
The International Federation of Surveyors (FIG) however defines a Surveyor as one who is able to do more than taking measurements but that with capacity and qualifications to conduct one, or more of the following activities;
• Determine, measure and represent the land, three-dimensional objects, point’s field and trajectories.
• Assemble and interpret land and geographically and economically related information
Use the information for planning and efficient administration and management of the land, the sea and any structure thereon.
• Carry out urban and rural development and land management and conduct research into and develop them.

The breath and diversity of the practice of surveying (geomatics) as well as its importance in modern civilization are readily apparent from this definition. When compared with other contemporary definitions of surveying, the FIG definition promotes the breaking into new frontiers of Surveying and Geoinformatics practice.
Thus, the FIG definition of Surveying is much more inclusive to achieve Sustainable Development and benefits of Globalization.
From the above discussion, it should be observed that the world of surveying and mapping has entered a new paradigm and the name Geomatics (Surveying and Geoinformatics) adopted to identify with the enlarged field of activities encompassed by the new paradigm. The discipline Geomatics (Surveying and Geoinformatics) encompasses the fields of Surveying, Mapping, Remote Sensing (Laser scanning) Photogrammetry, Hydrography, GNSS, GIS and many more and has emerged as a new integrated academic discipline. Geomatics has also been described as the discipline concerned with the collection, modeling, distribution, storage, analysis, processing and presentation of geographic data or geographic information (ISO/TC 211). However, in general sense, Surveying and Geomatics are used interchangeably involving definition of precise location on the earth surface which is critical in many fields and industry as cartography, land boundaries, disaster management, navigation, agriculture, energy assessment, pollution monitoring and utility management (See Figure 1.2).

Thus, from the FIG definition of surveying and the world of surveying that has entered a new paradigm; a Surveyor in this age should be fully involved in geospatial data collection, geospatial information production, management and usage (Geospatial Information System Applications). It should be of note that geospatial information is increasingly needed as a Decision Support in solving a lot of overwhelming problems of stress on the quality of world land, water and air brought about by population explosion and globalization and the attendant problems. The field of surveying forms an important source of information and provides a framework of many Spatial Decision Support Systems (SDSS) for a Nations development at organizational and strategic levels.

Figure 1.2: Content of Geomatics (Surveying and Geoinformatics)
(Source: Prof. G. Konecny)

2.0 IMPACTS OF GLOBALIZATION ON SURVEYING
2.1 SURVEYING EDUCATION
The role of Surveyors remains relevant to the modern world development, but there are notable changes in how Surveyors carry out their work and the nature of that work. The future of surveying profession must recognize the world trends and effect brought about by globalization. The changes in the professional arena demands changes in the associated educational programmes. The reform in higher educational programmes in surveying is intertwined with globalization effects. Issues of curriculum and pedagogy and the relationship between education and surveying industry should continue to be explored. There should also be a good relationship between polytechnic/monotechnic and university based surveying education and the wider world of professional surveying practice in order to move with the advancement brought about by globalization and world’s development.
There is need for Surveyors Council of Nigeria (SURCON) and Nigeria Institution of Surveyors (NIS) to be more proactive in breaking the dichotomy between Academic and Professional Practitioners, since all can stand to gain from the union of the two (i.e. academia and professional practice). The handling of the Mandatory Continuing Professional Development Program (MCPD) needs to be improved on in order to be made more effective. The reason for the MPCD is that Land Surveyors must continuously update their knowledge and technical skills to remain competent and abreast of current development in Surveying and Geoinformatics. The MCPD is therefore a skill renewal process and a channel of knowledge acquisition through training and retraining. There is need for assessment and grading to make it more effective and also making the trainee to be serious about the program.

 

2.2 ADVANCEMENT IN TECHNOLOGY
One of the most significant impacts of Globalization on land surveying is the rapid advancement of technology. Globalization has facilitated the exchange of knowledge and expertise, leading to the development of new surveying tools and techniques. Satellite imagery, Geographic Information Systems (GIS), and Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) called drone have revolutionized the way land surveyors collect and analyze data. These technological advancements have improved the accuracy, efficiency, and cost-effectiveness of land surveying projects, allowing surveyors to work on a global scale with greater precision.

Figure 2.1: Advancement in Technology on Surveying

2.3 CHANGES IN LAND OWNERSHIP STRUCTURES:
Globalization has influenced land ownership structures, particularly in regions experiencing rapid economic development and urbanization. The influx of foreign investment and multinational corporations has led to increased demand for land, resulting in changes to land use patterns and property rights. Land surveyors play a crucial role in documenting and mapping these changes, ensuring that land transactions are conducted legally and transparently. Additionally, Globalization has facilitated the emergence of trans-national land acquisitions, presenting new challenges for surveyors in terms of jurisdictional boundaries and regulatory frameworks.

2.4 STANDARDIZATION OF SURVEYING METHODS:
Globalization has increased cross-border collaboration and international trade; there has been a growing demand for standardized surveying methods and practices. International organizations such as the International Federation of Surveyors (FIG) and the United Nations have played a key role in promoting the adoption of common standards and guidelines for land surveying. FIG is a United Nations-recognized non-governmental organization whose aim is to ensure that the disciplines of surveying and all who practice them meet the needs of the market and communities they serve. This standardization ensures consistency in surveying data, facilitating communication and co-operation among surveyors worldwide. Land Surveyors are often involved in these projects to delineate boundaries, assess land suitability, and ensure compliance with regulations across different jurisdictions.
2.5 PRACTISING LAW
Decree CAP 425, laws of federation of Nigeria 1990 According to SURCON Enabling Acts section 9. Sub section b. A non-Nigerian with good qualification will be allowed to practice in Nigeria provided that his/her country accords Nigerian professional surveyors the same, reciprocal treatment and satisfied the council that he/she had sufficient practical experience as a surveyor. Any registration under this section shall be granted for one year and shall be renewable on an annual basis for another two years.
2.6 CHALLENGES AND OPPORTUNITIES:
While Globalization has brought about numerous benefits to the field of land surveying, it has also presented challenges. The increasing complexity of land transactions and property rights requires Surveyors to navigate diverse legal and regulatory frameworks. Moreover, competition from multinational surveying firms and outsourcing of surveying services to lower-cost regions can threaten the livelihoods of local surveyors.
Globalization has also produced effects that are more universally worrisome. Expanded transportation networks facilitate not only increased trade but also the spread of diseases. Undesirable trade, such as human trafficking and poaching, has flourished alongside legitimate commerce. Moreover, the pollution generated by the world’s modernization has resulted in global warming and CLIMATE CHANGE, threatening Earth’s habitation. COVID-19 pandemic that swept through the world in 2020 resulted in global lockdowns. All these problems that are geospatial in nature requiring geospatial information as Decision Support for the solutions.
The surveying profession in different parts of the world, report a range of major problems; including low student numbers, closure of surveying courses, an aging teaching profession, inadequate job opportunities in some locations and an insufficient supply of graduates to fill the vacancies in others.
The standardization of surveying practices and regulations across different countries can be complex and time-consuming. Cultural and language barriers may impede effective communication and collaboration with clients and stakeholders from diverse backgrounds.
Since Technology (phones, GPS etc) is open to every TOM, DICK and HARRY, the quality of geospatial information available in the Open Source is very much affected by CROWDSOURCING.
Crowrdsourcing or “Voluntered Geographic Information” has to do with data generated methods in which the general public use informal social networks to collect and share data that is stored centrally using the internet and on-line tools.
CONCLUSION
To navigate the challenges posed by globalization, Surveyors must adopt a proactive and forward-thinking approach. Embracing digital technologies such as Geographic Information Systems (GIS), Remote Sensing, and Global Navigation Satellite Systems (GNSS) can enhance the efficiency and accuracy of surveying operations. These tools enable surveyors to collect, analyze, and visualize spatial data more effectively, regardless of geographical boundaries.
Furthermore, Surveyors must prioritize continuous learning and professional development to stay abreast of global trends and best practices. Participating in international conferences, workshops, and collaborative projects can broaden horizons, foster knowledge exchange, and build networks with peers from around the world. Embracing diversity and cultural sensitivity is also essential for effective communication and collaboration in a globalized environment.
As we celebrate World Surveyors Day, it is essential to recognize the transformative impact of globalization on the surveying profession. By embracing technological innovation, fostering cultural understanding, and seizing opportunities for collaboration, Surveyors can navigate the challenges of globalization and contribute to sustainable development on a global scale. Surveyors must adapt to the changing landscape of Globalization to remain relevant and effective in the modern era.

THANK YOU

REFERENCES

Awake (2002) : Globalization Hope and Fear. Awake ISSN 0005 – 237x, Watch Tower Publication NY.
Chris Rizos : “Globalisation and the Surveying Profession: Threats and Opportunities,” Journal of Spatial Science, vol. 50, no. 2, 2005, pp. 83-92.ppp
Decree CAP 425, Laws of Federation of Nigeria 1990 According to SURCON Enabling Acts section 9. Sub section b
Fajemirokun, F. A (1998) : Of the Figure of the Earth Surveying, Mapping and Natural Development “Inaugural Lecture University of Lagos”
Ghularin C. D and Wolf P.R (2008) : “Elementary Surveying and Introduction to Geomatics 12th Edition” Pearson Practice Hall Upper Saddle, River N.J 07458
Ian Williamson, Abbas Rajabifard : “Globalisation and the changing nature of the surveying profession,” International Journal of Strategic Property Management, vol. 2, no. 2, 1998, pp. 66-73.
(ISO / TC 211) : ISO/TC 211 / WG 1 NIIG
T. A. Ako : “Globalization and its impact on the Geospatial Profession,” Geospatial World, May 17, 2016.
G. Konecny : “Recent Global Changes in Geomatics Education,” International Archives for Photogrammetry, Remote Sensing and Spatial Information Sciences, Vol XXXIV, Part VI.

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