Benefits of Joining the International Geospatial Society

The International Geospatial Society (IGS) is a global community of individual specialists and professionals with geospatial, spatial data infrastructure, geographic information system (GIS), mobile technology, mapping and related interests. The goal of the organization is to engage and enhance communications internationally among individuals who are actively involved in promoting, developing, or advancing geospatial and affiliated concepts.

The International Geospatial Society enables members to become fully engaged with peers from across the world and is the only current global organization of individual geospatial specialists. Members have voting status and have a voice and opportunity to be actively engaged in developing the work plans and tentative bylaws and operating procedures of the organization. IGS is the individual member arm of the GSDI Association and, as such, the elected President and Vice-President of IGS are members of the GSDI Association Council and the President sits on the GSDI Board of Directors. The first face-to-face meeting of International Geospatial Society members was held in October 2010 at GSDI 12 in Singapore.

Why should I join?

Contribute to and benefit from growing global knowledge networks developed by and for the discipline.

Geospatial Society members have access to the GSDI Member Services System, a web-based portal environment, where you may directly contribute SDI Community News to the Member’s Corner on the IGS and the GSDI homepages. You can also place events on the Community Calendar for all other members to view and manage your subscriptions to a range of SDI and Geospatial Email Lists. You might also develop and promote your own Community of Interest – a group of IGS and GSDI members interested in establishing and maintaining a dialog on topics of mutual interest. As an International Geospatial Society Member you are invited to join the Geographic Information Knowledge Network (GIKNet) at where you can share and maintain your personal professional profile in a visible guide to the global geographic specialist and professional communities, share your company or agency profile in a similar manner, and deliver germane documents that you or your company have created to a long-term open archive for the geospatial community.

Develop Partnerships

The International Geospatial Society and the GSDI Association as a whole provide a global venue for networking, communicating and learning among members. The organizations are highly inclusive providing contacts and communication avenues to diverse parties from across the world. GSDI government, private sector, academic and non-profit organizations along with Geospatial Society members are invited to participate fully in GSDI conferences, seminars, web discussions, and through the GSDI knowledge networks. 

Support Developing Nation Initiatives and Markets

The GSDI Association supports the establishment and expansion of local, national, and multi-national spatial data infrastructures that are locally to globally compatible. It has a particular emphasis on helping developing nations to establish such infrastructures and acquire the capacities to maintain them. Get involved through the emerging IGS committee structure or the existing GSDI committee structure to help put in place member-driven processes for prioritization of society resources to address the educational and technological needs of participants from developing nations.

Help build recommendations on SDI Best Practices

Help identify and document SDI best practices including technical, business, and policy practices.  Help build practical how-to-do guides and short videos for use by government and businesses worldwide and have them hosted in the GIKNetwork and/or through the International Geospatial Society web pages.

Affiliate with an organization with established global recognition and resources.

The International Geospatial Society is affiliated with an already established and well-respected international organization of geospatial agencies and organizations. The GSDI Association is the premier organization connecting professionals and specialists interested in promoting international cooperation and collaboration in support of compatible local, national and international spatial data infrastructure developments.  Such developments will allow nations and organizations to better address social, economic, and environmental issues of pressing importance.  Successful major conferences in Bonn (Germany), Chapel Hill (USA), Canberra (Australia), Cape Town (South Africa), Cartagena (Colombia), Budapest (Hungary), Bangalore (India), Cairo (Egypt), St. Augustine (Trinidad), Rotterdam (Netherlands) and Singapore (Singapore) attest to the growing global influence of the GSDI Association and enhance the likely long-term success and productivity of the International Geospatial Society.

Participate in the regular GSDI World Conferences

If you have the ability to travel, we invite you to participate, network and partner with others at the global GSDI conferences.  Since 1996, experts in SDI matters have come together to share their experiences in advancing SDI’s from local to international levels.  Registrants and special guests participate in presentation, panel and poster sessions, engage in round table and committee project discussions, receive workshop training in spatial data infrastructure advancements, and challenge each other in lively technical and policy dialog on SDI topics.

Grow Professionally and Personally

The International Geospatial Society will offer expanding opportunities for participation by individuals.  Join a committee and become engaged in developing and carrying out its workplan, present a paper or propose a panel discussion or workshop at a conference, participate in discussion lists or contribute knowledge to the GIKNet for the rest of us to learn more about your organization or yourself.  Participate in training and workshop opportunities with other members of the global community whether online or in person.

How much are the dues? 

The annual dues are US$ 50 for regular membership. Full-time enrolled university students may choose to pay annual dues of US $25 (Students must provide the name of the university in which they are enrolled full-time and provide the contact e-mail and phone number for the academic department head). Individuals from qualifying developing nations have the additional option to join for free by meeting a few conditions.

How do I join?

Fill out the short membership web form at

A.     Dues Payment: Submit your dues payment through use of a credit card.  Invoice processing, international wire transfer fees and foreign exchange charges often exceed the entire amount of the suggested annual dues. Thus, in order to keep dues as low as possible for everyone, we accept annual dues payments for the International Geospatial Society only though online credit card payments or through the transfer of cash in person to our Business Manager at a GSDI World Conference.

B.    Free Membership: If you are both a citizen of and resident in a developing nation, check to see if you qualify for free membership at

To answer further questions or for detailed information on any of the above, see the Bylaws of the GSDI Association that may be found at or contact any of the staff or officers listed at

Note: A pdf version of this page may be found at