International Cartographic Association

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International Cartographic Association
Logo of the International Cartographic Association.gif
Formation1959; 61 years ago (1959)
Region served
Official language
English, French
Tim Trainor
Parent organization
International Council for Science
WebsiteICA Official website

The International Cartographic Association (ICA) (French: Association Cartographique Internationale, ACI), is an organization formed of national member organizations, to provide a forum for issues and techniques in cartography and GIScience. ICA was founded on June 9, 1959, in Bern, Switzerland.[1] The first General Assembly was held in Paris in 1961. The mission of the International Cartographic Association is to promote the disciplines and professions of cartography and GIScience in an international context. To achieve these aims, the ICA works with national and international governmental and commercial bodies, and with other international scientific societies.[2]


The first president, Eduard Imhof of Switzerland was heavily involved in founding the association.[3]

Term President From country
2019- Tim Trainor  United States
2015-2019 Menno-Jan Kraak  Netherlands
2011-2015 Georg Gartner  Austria
2007-2011 William Cartwright  Australia
2003-2007 Milan Konecny  Czech Republic
1999-2003 Bengt Rystedt  Sweden
1995-1999 Michael Wood  United Kingdom
1987-1995 Fraser Taylor  Canada
1984-1987 Joel Morrison  United States
1976-1984 Ferdinand Ormeling  Netherlands
1972-1976 Arthur H. Robinson  United States
1968-1972 Konstantin Salichtchev  Soviet Union
1964-1968 Dennis Thackwell  United Kingdom
1961-1964 Eduard Imhof   Switzerland

Secretaries-General and Treasurers[edit]

The Secretary-General and Treasurer is responsible for the administration and the general running of the Association.

Term Name Nationality
2019-... Thomas Schulz   Switzerland
2011-2019 László Zentai  Hungary
2007-2011 David Fairbairn  United Kingdom
1999-2007 Ferjan Ormeling  Netherlands
1991-1999 Jean-Philippe Grélot  France
1984-1991 Donald T. Pearce  Australia
1976-1984 Olof W. Hedbom  Sweden
1968-1976 Ferdinand Ormeling  Netherlands
1961-1964 Erwin Gigas  West Germany

Executive Committee[edit]

On 20 July 2019 member nations elected the new Executive Committee (EC) of the ICA for the 2019–2023 term. New ICA president is Tim Trainor.[4]


To coordinate international cartographic work Commissions and Working Groups have been established. These are chaired by experts in a specific field of cartography and comprise members from the international Cartography and GIScience community.


ICA allows two types of memberships:[5]

  • Affiliate members are organisations, institutions or companies wishing to support the mission and activities of ICA.
  • National members are national organizations dealing with cartography or geoinformation, such as national mapping agencies.[6]


International Cartographic Conferences (ICC) take place every second year in one of the member countries. At every second conference (every fourth year) it hosts the General Assembly of the ICA.[7]

ICC Conferences[edit]

ICA Awards[edit]

Carl Mannerfelt Gold Medal[edit]

The Carl Mannerfelt Gold Medal honours cartographers of outstanding merit who have made significant contributions of an original nature to the field of cartography. It is awarded only on rare occasions. The award is named after the Swedish cartographer, Carl Mannerfelt, who in 1981 won the prize named after him.[8]

Recipients [9]
Name Nationality Year
Fraser Taylor Canada 2013
Ferjan Ormeling The Netherlands 2009
Jack Dangermond United States of America 2007
David Rhind United Kingdom 2005
Ernst Spiess Switzerland 2005
Chen Shupeng China 2001
Joel L. Morrison United States of America 2001
Jacques Bertin France 1999
Ferdinand J. Ormeling The Netherlands 1987
Carl Mannerfelt Sweden 1981
Arthur H. Robinson United States of America 1980
Konstantin A. Salichtchev Soviet Union 1980
Eduard Imhof Switzerland 1979–1980

ICA Honorary Fellowship[edit]

The ICA Honorary Fellowship is for cartographers of international reputation who have made special contribution to the ICA. It includes a bronze medal.

ICA Map Awards at the International Map Exhibition[edit]

At the biennial International Map Exhibitions at the ICC an international jury selects the best entries.[10]

Barbara Petchenik International Children Map Design Competition[edit]

This competition is organized every two years at the ICC. In a national round in all participating ICA member countries, the national winners are selected, which are exhibited during the International Cartographic Conference, where the international winners are selected.[11]


ICA offers a number of publications.[12] Its official journal is the International Journal of Cartography (print ISSN: 2372-9333; online ISSN: 2372-9341), published by Taylor & Francis on behalf of ICA.[13] It also has three affiliated journals:[12]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "History of the ICA". ICA. Retrieved 2 November 2015.
  2. ^ "Mission". ICA. Retrieved 2 November 2015.
  3. ^ "Executive Committee Archive". ICA. Retrieved 2 November 2015.
  4. ^ "Results of the 18th General Assembly of the ICA". ICA. Retrieved 30 July 2019.
  5. ^ "Membership types". ICA. Retrieved 2 November 2015.
  6. ^ [1]
  7. ^ "International Cartographic Conferences". ICA. Retrieved 2 November 2015.
  8. ^ "ICA Award Medals". ICA. Retrieved 2 November 2015.
  9. ^ ICA
  10. ^ "ICA Map Awards". ICA. Retrieved 2 November 2015.
  11. ^ "Barbara Petchenik Children's World Map Drawing Competition". ICA. Retrieved 2 November 2015.
  12. ^ a b [2]
  13. ^ [3]

External links[edit]