The International Pan American Symposium on Toponymy, organized by the Joint ICA/IGU Commission on Toponymy, was held from May 3 – 5, in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.

The Symposium had the support of the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, through the Post Graduation Program in Geography and GeoCart, Laboratory of Cartography of the Department of Geography, the Pan American Institute of Geography and History, PAIGH, as well as the Brazilian Institute of Geography and Statistics, IBGE.

The location in the Centro de Ciências Matemáticas e da Natureza – CCMN, Universidade Federal do Rio de Janeiro (UFRJ) Av. Athos de Oliveira Ramos, 274, Cidade Universitária, Rio de Janeiro, RJ – Brasil was excellent in a department surrounded by a luxuriant garden.

We can highlight the presence of Prof. Paulo Menezes, organizer and ICA Chair of the Joint ICA/IGU Commission on Toponymy, Prof. Cosimo Palagiano, from Italy, IGU Chair of the Joint ICA/IGU Commission on Toponymy, Prof. Peter Raper from South Africa and Prof. Yaïves Ferland from Canada. Due to the concurrence of two events Peter Jordan. Common vice-Chair of the Joint Commission could not attend the Symposium.

The event had 92 registered delegates from 8 countries, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, Portugal, Argentina, Dominican Republic, South Africa and Italy. There were 24 papers and 6 keynote oral presentations.

During his welcome speech Cosimo Palagiano underlined the importance of the collaboration between geographers and cartographers, which was the aim when the Commission was planned in 2011 in Santiago de Chile and established   in 2012 in Cologne. The interaction between geography and cartography is particularly essential in toponymy.

Paulo Menezes went over the history if our Joint Commission on Toponymy, whose founder fathers are. Ron Abler, Peter Jordan, Paulo Menezes and Cosimo Palagiano.

The main themes were Toponymy on Maps, Toponymy and Education, Indigenous and Minority Toponymy. The old maps of Brazil presented by Paulo Menezes have been of particular interest, as well as the discussion on the above subjects.

During the Closing Ceremony Peter Raper, Paulo Menezes and Yaïves Ferland delivered a speech on the excellence of the contributions and discussions, which were very interesting and

deepened.  Yaïves Ferland  also disseminated the first circular of the 2018 International Geographical Union Regional Conference which will be held in Quebec City from August 6 to 10, 2018. The theme of the meeting is “Appreciating difference, Apprécier la différence”, which is a common Quebec expression. The website of the conference is: IGU2018.ULAVAL.CA.

Cosimo Palagiano highlighted the presence and the activity of many young researchers, who are our future. To them we wish a bright future in life and research.

The event was successful and one of the main decisions made by the plenary of the Closing Ceremony was to organize the SIPAT meeting every two years.

The activities of the Joint Commission are summarized on the website:



Cosimo Palagiano

Sep 17, 2017 | Posted by in News and Events | 0 comments

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