FIG Commission 8 - Spatial planning and development

Work Plan 2015-2018

Original work plan in .pdf-format

Terms of Reference

  • Regional and local planning structure
  • Land use planning and implementation control 
  • Human settlement issues in spatial development
  • Natural resources utilization and stewardship
  • Strategy for environmentally sustainable development
  •  Public – Private – Partnerships
  • Rural development and land governance
  • Disaster risks management and resilience
  • Inter-relationship between and amongst Commissions

Mission statement

The mission of Commission 8 is to unpack linkages between planning, Sustainable Development, natural resources utilization for economic growth while advancing social equity and resilience.


Spatial Planning

Commission 8 continues to recognize spatial planning as a function for political decision makers, regional and sub-regional development organizations, technical Institutions, and Academic Institutions with active involvement of local communities with the prime objectives of investigating and setting out policies, as well as  their implementation in order to attain sustained growth and prosperity.

These regional and sub-regional bodies, including FIG should ultimately provide leadership in strategies for formulation and implementation of spatial development planning and decision making at all levels of governance.

Urban Development

The World Urban Forum and its partners is contributing to guiding and enriching the policy work on equity and sustainable urbanization through an open dialogue.

Commission 8 will actively support this ongoing dialogue and align its goals in achieving sustainable urban development with those of the Forum and will actively pursue and support any political and technical debates on attaining a socially and ecologically equitable future. Expectedly, our support of their goals will ultimately feed into the global preparatory process of the Third United Nations Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development (Habitat III). In the face of global challenges, Urban  management systems and infrastructure to support sustainable, resilient urban development ought to be pursued. Rural Development

The development of rural area, to some extent, is always neglected by local governments and the gap between rural and urban becomes increasingly wide, pwhich leads to many social, economic as well as environmental problems, threatening sustainable development of the country. Arguably, rural development is a complex issue, and could refer to many aspects such as land governance, fiscal policy, agricultural, and even social welfare system.

The World at Risk

Development and Risks
The world’s population is projected to rise to 9.6 billion in 2050 and to have reached 10.9 billion by 2100 (UN, 2013). Already more than half the world’s population live in urban areas and that percentage is estimated to rise to 68 per cent (6.3 billion people) by 2050 (Swiss Re, 2013). There has always been a dialectic between attraction and risk in the determination of human settlement patterns, a trade-off between soil, resources and location on the one hand, and hazards, such as volcanoes, earthquakes and floods, on the other.

Researchers argue that this rapidly changing built environment is the fast-growing, sprawling urban conglomerations located mainly in the high-growth markets of East Asia. These often coastal and riverine urban areas like the Pearl River Delta in China are frequently exposed to multiple hazards such as floods, typhoons and tsunami. Many, too, are also located in seismically active areas, such as Metro Manila in the Philippines. The sheer concentration of lives and assets exposes more people more often to more risk.

Natural Resources Utilisation

Undoubtedly, the global efforts to ensure sustainable management of resources such energy, water, forest, needs sustained support from professional Association’s such as FIG. With the current world population statistics, humanity will certainly run out of forest and rivers. Global resource consumption trends must prompt us to adopt realistic forecasts as a planning tool.

Citing instances from publications, it is believed that freshwater only makes 2.5% of the total volume of the world's water, which is about 35 million km3. But considering 70% of that freshwater is in the form of ice and permanent snow cover and that we only have access to 200,000km3 of freshwater overall, it isn't surprising that demand for water could soon exceed supply. The Food and Agriculture Organisation of the United Nations is predicting that by 2025, 1.8 billion people will be living in countries or regions with absolute water scarcity.

The key challenges in the new millennium have been summarized by experts as climate change, food shortage, energy scarcity, urban growth, environmental degradation, and natural disasters.

These challenges can only be managed when the professional roles of surveyors’ are broadened to encompass principles that link planning and development.

Commission 8 will consider what constitutes humanities needs as enshrined in the human rights charter. The right to life meaning access to land, water and energy as resources.

In the period 2015-2018, our focus will be to;

  • Consider World’s population and the eventual  futuristic scenario planning based on global statistics on land, water and energy as a resource
  • To develop guidelines, methods and planning systems based on availability, accessibility, equitability, profitability, of natural resources utilization for inclusive growth
  • Assert FIG’s leadership role in developing guidelines that minimize vulnerability, improve sustainability to achieve resilience for global common good
  • Give prominence in spatial & economic planning systems to South East Asia, Africa, South America & Caribbean for the following reasons:
    • Vast untapped natural resource
    • High predominance of environmental risks
  • Adopt robust planning principles for sustainable resource use mindful of the key  nexus of equity, inclusive growth and sustainable urban development through (voluntary guidelines) that could emerge as global standard by FIG
  • Create a platform for “cross knowledge” sharing by the developed and the developing countries
  •  Establish a working group with special focus on water and energy
  • Commission 8 will continue to and deepen the collaboration/consultation with all Commissions and YSN

Working Groups

Working Group 8.1 – Disaster recovery, risk management and resilience planning

Policy Issues

  • Establish principles and guidelines for surveyors in disaster risks management, disaster recovery and resilience planning
  • To formalize partnerships and roles with global Institutions working in the areas of disaster management


Mr Phil Rhodes, New Zealand
Email: prhodes[at]

Specific project(s)

  • Investigate key roles of surveyors in disaster risk management and resilience planning
  • Investigate areas with high predominance of environmental risk for targeted actions


  • To organise a round table discussion at Sofia, Bulgaria in May 2015
  • Develop special papers for FIG working week 2016


  • Present report at the FIG working week 2017


2015: roundtable and preparatory discussion

2016: reports and recommendation

2018: Publication


FIG member organizations, UN, Red Cross and humanity organizations, Professional bodies

Working Group 8.2 – Stewardship for water, land and forest as primary resources for ldevelopment

Policy issues

  • Consider and examine human rights principles/issues to food, water, energy and shelter and to establish linkages between planning and development
  • Surveyors functional role in ensuring proper stewardship and effective utilization of resources to sustain prosperity at community, country, and global levels
  • Scenario planning as a means to mitigate availability, accessibility, equity, and sustainability challenges for water, land and forest as resources for development


Ms. Yvonne O. Sowah, Ghana
Email: alproserv3[at]

Bruce Keith, United Kingdom
Email: lbrucekeith[at]

Specific project(s)

  • Identify a planning framework which supports public – private – partnership and offers the best stewardship for natural resources for development
  • Investigate key roles for surveyors that supports the PPP above


  • Develop series of working papers for FIG working weeks
  • Plan and organise a joint (Com 8 & Com 4) workshop with identified key stakeholders for policy initiation and an action plan.


  • Report on outcomes of the workshops at FIG regional conference


2015: Round Table to develop proposals and action plan
2016: Refining and adopting the Action plan
2017 Workshop
2018 Publication


UN, FIG Members associations, Governments and NGO’S,

Working Group 8.3 – Human settlement policies and implementation

Policy issues

  • The narratives in the informal settlement,
  • The debate for the next decade


Professor Perter Laarakker, the Netherlands
Email: Peter.laarrakker[at]

Specific project(s)

  • Develop appropriate level of surveyors contribution to the Human settlement debate
  • Explore emerging narratives in the informal settlement Issues


  • To explore and assert FIG’s leadership and key role in informal settlement arena.
  • and to investigate further to enhance the knowledge base through which surveyors can actively provide expert advice in informal settlement issues for Institutional collaboration and support at all levels of governance


To produce a working document and a program of action as outcomes from the workshops above


2015: Round table session at FIG working week 2015
2017: Final report and recommendation for FIG working week 2017


United Nations, World Bank, World Urban Forum, FIG professional Associations and member organizations, NGO’S, Researchers.

Working Group 8.4 –Resilient Urban Development

Policy issues

  • Promoting sustainable urban development with the surveyors’ variety of skills and knowledge (e.g. geoinformatics, land management and development)
  • Strengthening urban resilience and adapting cities to the impacts of climate change
  • Analysing the role of society and culture in urban sustainability
  • Supporting the promotion of best practices in sustainable urban development
  • Encouraging international collaboration and driving exchange on resilient urban development


Dr. Frank Friesecke, Germany
Email: frank.friesecke[at]

Specific project(s)

  • Analysing the role of the Surveyor in dealing with urban sustainability and climate change
  • Exploring how cities can cope with the demands of building urban areas that are environmentally sustainable and support both economic and social development


  • Urban development in developing countries (intended for a regional FIG Conference in Africa, Asia or South America)
  • Managing disaster risk and the impacts of climate change with resilient urban development (Christchurch 2016


  • To produce a working document and a program of action as outcomes from the workshops above


2015: 1. Round table session at FIG Working Week 2015 in Sofia
2016: 2. Round table session at FIG Working Week 2016 in Christchurch
2017: Final report and recommendation for FIG Working Week 2017 in Helsinki


United Nations, World Bank, World Urban Forum, FIG professional Associations and member organizations, NGO’S, Researchers.

Working Group 8.5 – Rural development and land governance

Policy issues

  • Identify the important role of land governance in sustainable rural development
  • Develop a practical land governance framework to facilitate rural development, focusing on the issues of land tenure, spatial planning, land consolidation and village renewal
  • Establish partnerships and exchange platforms among various organizations and institutions working on the field of rural development


 Rosy Liao Rong, China
Email: rosyliao[at]

Dr.-Ing. Michael Klaus,  Germany
Email: klaus[at]

Specific project(s)

  • Identify factors for rural development to minimize the gap between urban and rural areas
  • Identify key roles for surveyors to contribute to policy advice
  • Identify key factors for Land Governance in regard of rural areas
  •  Identification of Key Actors
  • Develop a guideline of setting up a functional land governance framework to facilitate rural development, focusing on the issues of land tenure, spatial planning, land consolidation and village renewal


  • Workshops in China and other Countries as well as FIG Working Weeks to prepare a Working Papers


  • working document(s) and a program of action for rural development as outcomes from the workshops above
  • Draft for Guidelines


2015: Round table session at FIG working week 2015
2015: Workshop in China with Case Studies
2016: Round table Sessions at FIG Working Week 2016
2016: International Symposium in China
2017:Round table Session at FIG Working Week 2017
2018: Final report/paper and recommendation for FIG conference week 2018
Research on Case Studies – Time Schedule to be agreed on first round table session   


United Nations (GLTN), World Bank, FIG professional Associations and member organizations, Land Administrations, Civil Society Organizations, NGO’S, Researchers.

Vice Chair Administration and Coordinator  – Inter Commission relations

Policy issues

Planning involves multi; Tasks, Roles, Professions, Functions, location specific and is everything from Archaeology to Zoology. The need to manage high level collaboration, consultation and coordination between and amongst the Commissions as a policy objective of FIG should be asserted.


Dr. Kweku Yeboah, Ghana

Specific project(s)

  • Create high level collaboration with YSN and Commissions of FIG
  • Plan and implement collaborative technical programs and joint sessions with other Commissions


Organise round table discussions at each and every working week to determine synergies in inter commission activities and with the active participation and involvement of YSN


  • Reports on round table meetings and outcomes


2015: Introductory meeting and round table discussion at working 2015
2016: Round Table discussion and action planning
2017: Report on outcomes of inter Commission activities


FIG Member association and Commissions, Young Surveyors Network,

Co-operation with Other Commissions and organisations

  • Commission 8 intends to cooperate with Commissions 1, 2, 3, and 4 and with organizations that seeks to uphold human rights, justice and equity in resource utilization.
  • Specific Countries and organizations with challenges and needs requiring focused attention from FIG’s leadership as built environment professionals.

Co-operation with United Nation Organisations, Sister Associations and other Partners


Commission Officers

Commission Chair

Kwame Tenadu, M.A (Envt. Mgt & Policy)
President, Licensed Surveyors Association of Ghana
P. O. Box CC 564
Cape Coast
Cell: +233206654219
Cell: +233243241121
Skype: kwame.tenadu
Email: tenaduk[at], kwametenadu[at]

Vice Chair Administration and Coordinator – Inter Commission relations

Dr. Kweku Yeboah,
Faculty of planning and land Economy
Kwame Nkrumah University of Science & Technology (KNUST),

Chair of Working Group 8.1

Mr. Phil Rhodes
Porirua City Council,
16 Cobham Court
Porirua 5022
New Zealand
Email: prhodes[at]

Chairs of Working Group 8.2

Ms. Yvonne O. Sowah – Ghana Institution of Surveyors
(Gh.IS) – Ghana
Email: alproserv3[at]


Mr. Bruce Keith  -Chartered Institute of Water & Environmenta Management
(CIWEM) – United Kingdom
Email: lbrucekeith[at]

Chair of Working Group 8.3

Peter Laarrakker, (Professor)
Dutch Kadaster
The Netherlands
Email: Peter.laarrakker[at]

Chair of Working Group 8.4

Dr Frank Friesecke
Die STEG Stadtentwicklung GmbH
Olgastr. 54
D- 70182 Stuttgart
Tel: +49 71121068118
Email: frank.friesecke[at]

Chair of Working Group 8.5

Ms. Rosy LiaoRong
China Land Surveying and Planning Institute
The Ministry of Land and Resources
NO. 37 Guan Yin Yuan Xiqu,
Xicheng District
Beijing 100035
The Peoples‘ Republic of China
Email: ROSYLiao rosyliao[at]

Dr.-Ing. Michael Klaus,
Regional Project China of Hanns Seidel Foundation & Technical University Munich
Email: klaus[at]