In mid-2011, I was intrigued when I learned that there was an opportunity to bring the Digital Earth Summit back to New Zealand (the inaugural Summit took place in Auckland in 2006).
Although I was familiar with the International Society for Digital Earth, I didn’t fully appreciate why it exists, how it does what it does, and the impacts it makes. It seemed to be a space where clever scientists, academics and technologists played together and did not necessarily have a place for someone like me. However my gut said it was the right thing to do – an exciting thing to do - and in quick order, we got Wellington City Council on board and a few weeks later, together we won the hosting rights for the 4th Digital Earth Summit 2012.
Why is this exciting for a non-scientist, non-academic, non-technologist, like me? Well, I love nothing more than being the catalyst to create a forum for interesting and intelligent people to have a chat. And such a chat this will be! We offer you 3 days of listening, speaking, debating, conceding, agreeing and exploring. If you’re from the private sector, you will want to be there to inform and be informed. If you’re from government, new policy thinking will take place and you should be there to help direct it. If you’re from the research and academic sector, you are going to want to be on the ground floor for collaborations. And, if you’re like me and get your buzz by connecting with people who share similar goals, values and other drivers, you’ll want to be part of the big chat.