UN/USA International Meeting of Experts the Use and Applications of Global Navigation Satellite Systems   

11-15 November 2002, Vienna, Austria

Online resources

I. BACKGROUND

At the Third United Nations Conference on the Exploration and Peaceful Uses of Outer Space, known as UNISPACE III, the participating States stressed the social and economic benefits of global navigation satellite systems (GNSS). Benefits of GNSS applications are growing in such areas as aviation, maritime and land transportation, mapping and surveying, agriculture, power and telecommunications networks, and disaster warning and emergency response, to name a few. Particularly for developing countries, GNSS applications offer cost-effective solutions to pursue economic growth without compromising the present and future needs to preserve the environment, thus promoting sustainable development.

Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) is one of the most promising space applications to achieve the recommendations proposed during UNISPACE III. The positioning and timing systems based on space technologies constitute tremendous emerging markets for new services and advanced applications when used either as stand-alone systems or in synergy with other systems. In recent years, the use of satellites for navigation, positioning, and timing has become an increasingly significant economic activity, with industry revenues projected to grow from over $7 billion in 2000 to over $9 billion in 2002.

However, the benefits of GNSS are not fully recognized particularly in developing countries for a variety of reasons. In order to help developing countries benefit from GNSS applications, the United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs organized, within the framework of the United Nations Programme on Space Applications, a series of workshops focusing on capacity building in the use of GNSS in various areas of applications. This series of workshops was included in the plan of action of the Office to implement recommendations of UNISPACE III and endorsed by the General Assembly in 2000. Four regional workshops and one expert meeting were to be organized with the technical and financial support of the Government of the United States of America. The European Space Agency (ESA) and the European Commission (EC) have co-sponsored these five activities.

Four regional workshops were held in 2001 and 2002 as indicated below:

     i) First UN/USA Workshop on the Use of Global Navigation Satellite Systems, for the benefit of countries in Asia and the Pacific (Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia, 20-24 August 2001);

     ii) Second UN/USA Regional Workshop on the Use and Applications of Global Navigation Satellite Systems, for the benefit of countries in Eastern Europe (Vienna, Austria, 26-30 November 2001);

     iii) Third UN/USA Regional Workshop on the Use and Applications of Global Navigation Satellite Systems, for the benefit of countries in Latin America and the Caribbean (Santiago, Chile, 1-5 April 2002);

     iv) Fourth UN/USA Workshop on the Use of Global Satellite Navigation Systems, for the benefit of countries in Africa (15-19 July 2002).

The International Expert Meeting on the Use and Applications of Global Navigation Satellite Systems, to be convened in Vienna, Austria, from 11 to 15 November 2002, will review the conclusions and recommendations of the above regional workshops and will consider possible follow-up actions.

The launch of capacity-building activities in the use of GNSS also contributes to the work being conducted by the Action Team on Global Navigation Satellite Systems, established by the United Nations Committee on the Peaceful Uses of Outer Space (COPUOS) in 2001. This Action Teams is responsible for implementing the recommendation of UNISPACE III to improve universal access to and compatibility of space-based navigation and positioning systems (recommendation no. 10 in the  Vienna Declaration of UNISPACE III). The Action Team currently consists of 31 member States and 13 organizations and is being chaired by the United States of America and Italy.

II. OBJECTIVES

The International Meeting of Expert will aim to achieve the following objectives:

     i) Assess what has been accomplished through the series of UN/USA regional workshops;

     ii) Examine what still needs to be done to achieve the long-term goal of the series of regional workshops, i.e. to expand the user base of GNSS technologies;

     iii) Identify cross-cutting concerns, inter-disciplinary and over regions, and region-concerns and possible solutions to address those concerns;

     iv) Identify follow-up actions at global and regional levels that can be implemented within a short time period, i.e. within 2-3 years, including further actions to be taken by the Office for Outer Space Affairs in the area of capacity building of developing countries in the use and applications of GNSS;

     v) Identify GNSS applications that can support the implementation of follow-up actions of the World Summit on Sustainable Development and the United Nations Millennium Declaration.

III. APPROACH

In order to achieve the objectives, the International Expert Meeting will examine the following:

     i) Reports of the regional workshops;

     ii) Compilation of recommendations of the regional workshops;

     iii) Compilation of the proposals and suggestions forwarded to the Office for Outer Space Affairs by the participants following the regional workshops;

     iv) Compilation of responses to the questionnaire being circulated to the participants of the regional workshops to examine what has been gained from the workshops, difficulties encountered or envisaged in applying the knowledge gained from the workshops, and suggestions for follow-up actions;

     v) United Nations Millennium Declaration;

     vi) Plan of Implementation, World Summit on Sustainable Development.

IV. PARTICIPANTS OF THE MEETING

The International Expert Meeting will be attended by:

     i) Selected participants of the four regional workshops

     ii) Leading experts in the use and applications of GNSS from both public and private sectors;

     iii) Selected members of the Action Team on GNSS.

V. AGENDA AND ORGANIZATION OF WORK

The agenda of the International Expert Meeting will consist of:

     i) Opening statements by the sponsors and co-sponsors, i.e. United States Government, European Commission and European Space Agency.

     ii) Presentation on the objectives and goals (United Nations)

     iii) Key presentations on the highlights of recommendations of the regional workshops, including the following: 
          a. GNSS systems and interoperability 
          b. GNSS applications to the management of natural resources and the environment 
          c. GNSS applications to surveying, mapping and Earth sciences 
          d. GNSS applications to transportation 
          e. Training and education in the use and applications of GNSS

     iv) Key presentations of the role of GNSS in socio-economic development 
          a. GNSS in the Information Age 
          b. GNSS and the economic development

     v) Working Group sessions 
          a. Applications, including the following 
             - Surveying, mapping and Earth sciences 
             - Transportation 
             - Protection of environment and pollution control/mitigation 
             - Disaster management 
             - Management of natural resources 
             - Agriculture

          b. Cross-cutting issues 
             - Training and education 
             - Awareness increase (public and policy makers) 
             - Institutional framework (policy, regulations, funding, including spectrum management) 
             - Coordination mechanism (forum/entities to exchange information between and among service providers, system operators and users)

     vi) Plenary sessions 
          a. Reports by the working groups (applications and cross-cutting issues) 
          b. Adoption of the report of the International Expert Meeting

 The International Expert Meeting will consist of the plenary and working groups. The working groups will meet in parallel to each other. The indicative schedule of work is as follows.

 

Monday, 11 November 2002
a.m. Plenary (opening; and key presentations)
p.m. Plenary (key presentations)
Tuesday, 12 November 2002
a.m. Working Group sessions on applications (up to 3 working groups would meet in parallel)
p.m. Working Group sessions on applications (up to 3 working groups would meet in parallel)
Wednesday, 13 November 2002
a.m. Plenary (reports by working groups)
p.m. Working Group sessions on cross-cutting issues (up to 3 working groups would meet in parallel)
Thursday, 14 November 2002
a.m. Working Group sessions on cross-cutting issues (up to 3 working groups would meet in parallel)
p.m. Plenary (reports by working groups
Friday, 15 November 2002
a.m. Plenary (conclusion; adoption of the report)
 

The working groups on applications will report to the plenary on their findings and recommendations. Taking into account the recommendations by the working groups on applications, working groups on cross-cutting issues will conduct discussions. Their finding and recommendations will be reported to the plenary.

In conducting discussions, the working group should aim to achieve the following in line with the objectives of the Meeting:

     i) Identify region-specific recommendations and cross-cutting (inter-disciplinary and over regions) recommendations; 
     ii) Develop proposals for follow-up actions that can be implemented within a short time period, i.e. within 2 years; 
     iii) Suggest methods for monitoring and evaluating the implementation of the follow-up actions.

VI EXPECTED OUTCOME

The short-term and mid-term results of the International Expert Meeting would include:

     i) Follow-up actions to be undertaken by the Office for Outer Space Affairs in 2003 and 2004 in capacity-building in the use and applications of GNSS; 
     ii) Follow-up actions to be undertaken by other entities in 2003 and 2004; 
     iii) Set of recommendations that can be presented to policy makers for their possible consideration and action in their countries; 
     iv) Set of suggestions to non-governmental entities in implementing some of the follow-up actions.

VII FINANCIAL ARRANGEMENTS

Within the limited financial resources available to the co-sponsors, a number of invited participants from developing countries will be offered financial support to attend the Meeting. Funded participants will be provided with a round trip air ticket (most economic fare) between the airport of international departure in their home country and Vienna. The co-sponsors will also defray the room and board expenses of these participants for the duration of the Meeting.

VIII. LANGUAGE OF THE MEETING

Applicants must have a good knowledge of  ENGLISH, which will be the working language of the Workshop.

Online Documentation

Note: Documents are available in PDF. The hypertext links indicate the format of the document. Click on the appropriate link to download the required format.

Document Symbol

Title of Document

Format

------ The Space Millennium: Vienna Declaration on Space and Human Development PDF-E 
A/RES/55/2 United Nations Millennium Declaration  
------ Plan of Implementation, World Summit on Sustainable Development HTML-E
A/CONF.199/L.6/Rev.2 The Johannesburg Declaration on Sustainable Development PDF-E
A/CONF.199/L.6/Rev.2/Corr.1 The Johannesburg Declaration on Sustainable Development: Corrigendum PDF-E
A/AC.105/771 United Nations/United States of America Workshop on the Use of Global Navigation Satellite Systems (Kuala Lumpur, 20-24 August 2001) PDF-E
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