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The historical archives of EUROSDR available for research

Posted on 13 January 2016

The historical archives of EuroSDR (European Spatial Data Research) and of its predecessor organisation, OEEPE (Organisation européenne d'études photogrammétriques expérimentales) are now available for research at the Historical Archives of the European Union.

OEEPE was an international organisation established in Paris on 12 October 1953, in accordance with a Recommendation of the Council of the Organisation for European Economic Cooperation (OEEC, predecessor of the current OECD). The aim of the organisation was to cooperate and pool resources for a joint programme of advanced photogrammetric experiments, which aimed at increasing the accuracy, quality and efficiency of aerial surveys and at speeding up the improvement of photogrammetric methods for mapping.

It was founded by five  countries: Austria, Belgium, Germany, Italy and the Netherlands. They were soon followed by Switzerland. The participating organisations were national cadastral and geographical institutions (military and civilian), universities and research centres.

 In June 2003, a new agreement was signed: the name of the organisation was changed to EuroSDR, and its new task was described as “the research and development of methods, systems and standards for the acquisition, processing, production, maintenance, storing and dissemination of core geospatial data and information”. At the time of this major change, the organisation had also widened its membership: from the five founding members, the organisation has come to include 19 member countries.

EuroSDR agreed to deposit its historical archives at the HAEU with a deposit contract signed on 08 January 2015. The EUROSDR fonds at the HAEU is made up of 4 linear meters of documents covering the period 1951 – 2010. They include the OEEPE and EuroSDR founding documents, correspondence, minutes of meetings of the governing bodies and of the scientific commissions of the organisation, scientific notes and reports, maps, tables and photographs, notebooks, publications, annual accounts and audit reports. Researchers can gain an understanding of the workings and the development of the administration and organisation of OEEPE/EuroSDR, by looking at the files of OEEPE governing bodies, as well as of the development of its experiments and changing research plans.

The fonds will be interesting for scholars of European cooperation and integration, who can explore a case of European cooperation in a very specific technological field. The materials contained in the fonds are also of interest to scholars of the history of geography and mapping, or for scholars dealing with the general history of science and technology.

Direct Access: EuroSDR archives

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