Future of Surveying
Where it is going
What has changed
The technical limitations of the past no longer apply. Both measurement and computation are easy, perhaps trivial in terms of skills.
Modern surveyors are well educated. They enter the profession with a degree, and frequently a double degree, masters or Phd.
Whilst infrastructure development and land release continue, neither are the dominant drivers they formally were.
Areas of increasing importance are the creation and management of spatial data, and the application of that data. Interestingly, geodesy which played a key role in the past remains important because of the increased application of satellite systems such as GPS.
The modern surveyor is confronted with the introduction of new a powerful technology including scanning technology, both terrestrial and airborne, satellites that produce high-resolution images, and increasing numbers of satellites dedicated to positioning on earth. Surveyors must quickly come to terms with each new technology’s potential if they are to employ them effectively.
Increasingly government is recognising the economic importance of the spatial industry in which surveyors work, its potential to expand locally and to produce export opportunities.
Surveyors of the future will more likely be employed in the private sector than government. They will work in teams with other professionals. They will also find it easier to diversify their careers because the basic spatial concepts they learn at university and in their careers have wide application.
In short, the future is bright. Those wishing to follow the traditional field-surveying path still can. However there now many more opportunities.