Chris Body has contributed to the advancement of location information and services, including the technology that has provided national government mapping agencies & companies to visualise their mapping data, using various mapping platforms we have today. A thought leader in geospatial information, Mr Body worked in a number of Australia Government Agencies, including the Office of Spatial Policy and represents Australia on a number of International Organization for Standardization (ISO) committees, including ISO/TC 211 – Geographic Information/Geomatics committee and ISO/TC 268 – Sustainable Cities and Communities. Mr Body’s work sits at the core of the transcendence of standards in physical and virtual environments.
Chris Body began his career in 1979 as a junior cartographic draughtsman and has been involved in imagery and geospatial work since the mid-1990s, including a stint working for the Department of Defence overseeing the development of the imagery standards for the imagery system.
Mr Body first joined Standards Australia as a committee member in 1995 and became involved in international standards development in the late 1990s. He has been a participant on Standards Australia technical committees, including IT-004, Geographical Information/Geomatics, IT-023, Transport Information and Control Systems, and SC-001 Smart Cities Advisory Group.
Additionally, he is currently engaged with the United Nations Committee of Experts on Global Geospatial Information Management on the use and development of ISO 19152 - Land Administration Domain Model.
In 2003, Mr Body moved to Geoscience Australia to coordinate their Standards Engagement program and has been Chairing IT-004, Geographical Information/Geomatics, since 2005. He continues to contribute to the Australia/New Zealand Spatial industry as the Open Geospatial Consortium’s Engagement Manager.
He has delivered a number of projects which have contributed to the betterment of the wider community, including his role in the ‘Rural and Urban Addressing’ standard used by emergency and rescue services to direct vehicles and people to the right address/location.
Mr Body also played a key role in the technological development that has provided governments and industries to show mapping information in the digital era. He was part of a team within the Australian Government that initially developed the geospatial policies and principles for the Foundation Spatial Data Framework. The framework identified ten foundation spatial data themes to support the base spatial layers required by most uses: geocoded Addressing, positioning, place names, transport, and imagery.
Reflecting on his career, he describes the geospatial industry as undergoing a significant transition to ensure it can work horizontally across many other industries, including Smart Cities, Digital Twins and the Intelligent Transport Systems.
The significance and value of location information and data has long been recognised but it is only in the last 10 years or so we have seen this being integrated into a broader “ecosystem”.
For example, this will mean that geospatial information will need to be incorporated into Smart Cities to support locations of necessary utilities, such as underground services (e.g., water, gas, and electricity). Emergency services will also rely heavily on geospatial information as addresses can be rural or even in high rise buildings.
Looking further into the future Mr Body identifies other key areas the geospatial industry will contribute to.
“We’ll be working with the space industry for remote sensing. We’ll also be working to support the UN’s Sustainable Development Goals to combat climate change, and we’ll be working with the Australian Bureau of Statistics to help integrate information-based information,” he said.
Throughout his career, Mr Body has been recognised for his many contributions to the spatial data sector. In 2002, he was awarded the Defence Imagery and Geospatial Organisation Outstanding Service Award. Later in 2005, Geoscience Australia awarded him the Certificate of Achievement in Leadership and most recently he was awarded the Surveying and Spatial Sciences Institute (SSSI) Eminence Award in 2020.
On receiving his Standards Heroes title, Mr Body said he was "honoured to be included in this series.”
“I want to thank the previous chair of IT-004, Andrew Jones for his mentorship and I would also like to thank the Government for enabling me to be a contributor to standards for over 25 years,” Mr Body concluded. Standards Australia also recognised his contributions in 2011 through the Standards Australia Meritorious Contribution Awards (International).
He is described by those at Standards Australia who have had the opportunity to work with him as a persuasive and articulate forward thinker.
“Chris Body has the willingness and initiative to take the lead and guide the committees he resides on to ensure continued development and progress in the national geospatial space – a true trailblazer for the spatial informational sector,” said Standards Australia CEO, Adrian O’Connell.