Markku Poutanen elected Secretary General of the International Association of Geodesy

Markku Poutanen, professor and department director, has been elected Secretary General of the International Association of Geodesy (IAG).

Markku Poutanen in IAG's meeting in May 2019
Photo:
Sonja Lahtinen

At the same time, representatives of member states elected the president and vice president, four commission presidents and representatives of services in the IAG Executive Committee for a four-year term. The results of the email voting will be released officially at the General Assembly held in Montreal in July, signifying the beginning of the four-year term.
 
Established in the 1860s, IAG is a scientific association and a community of geodetic research and scientists. It is one of the eight associations of the International Union of Geodesy and Geophysics (IUGG) which covers the entire field of geoscientific research.

IAG’s services observe, collect and analyse data from global geodetic observation networks, maintain global geodetic coordinate systems and, for example, calculate the precise orbits of navigation satellites and Earth’s orientation in space. If it were not for IAG’s services, we would not have our modern navigation systems or precise coordinates.

IAG’s activities are based on voluntary cooperation between its member universities, research institutions and mapping agencies. In Finland, the Finnish Geospatial Research Institute (FGI) of the National Land Survey of Finland and, in particular, the Metsähovi geodetic research station are parts of IAG's geodetic infrastructure.
 
“This is an excellent recognition for Finnish geodesy and geodetic traditions in Finland. Without the hard work of previous generations and the Finnish Geodetic Institute, whose work FGI now continues, this recognition would not have been possible”, Poutanen says.
 
No Finnish person has ever before been appointed Secretary General of IAG. T.J. Kukkamäki, the former director of the Finnish Geodetic Institute, acted as the President of IAG in the 1970s. Currently, Poutanen is the Director of the Geodesy and Geodynamics Department at FGI.

More information

Director Markku Poutanen, +358 40 718 2152, firstname.lastname@nls.fi

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