The Bartlett Development Planning Unit


Ethnic-led collaborative mapping in the Colombian Amazon

15 September 2023, 5:00 pm–7:00 pm


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Catalina Ortiz


G17 IAS Forum
Advanced Studies, Studies Room

The ethnic-led strategy to collaboratively map the ancestral territory of “Pueblo Cofán” (A'l) is aimed at ensuring the conservation and survival of original peoples in the Colombian Amazon. The Instituto Geográfico Agustin Codazzi (IGAC) and the Amazon Conservation Team (ACT) are working together to compile toponyms (names of geographic sites of relevance) and consolidate the country's cartography, including ethnic and linguistic approaches in the process. Their work comes at a time when the survival of indigenous communities worldwide is becoming increasingly precarious. This is primarily attributed to globalization, which generally leads to the violation of their rights and the erosion of their worldviews, culture, and traditions.The event will present the methodological details of the research and the relevance of the project in academic fields such as geography, citizen participation, sustainability and information sciences. To make visible the high quality of the projects led by the Colombian public sector and explore potential collaborations with partners from the global north and south.


5:00 - Welcome by the chair
5:05 - Welcome words by the Chargé of Affairs of the Colombian Embassy to the United Kingdom
5:10 - Introduction of the participating organisations (IGAC and ACT)
5:15 - Main talk “Ethnic-led collaborative mapping in the Colombian Amazon”
6:00 - Short panel session and impressions by the chair
6:10 - Q&A.
6:30 Concluding remarks and takeaway by the chair


Linda García is a surveyor engineer with a master's in geographic information systems (GIS). She has over 10 years of experience in land formalization with indigenous and local communities within the Colombian Government. Since 2017, she has been part of the Amazon Conservation Team (ACT) and currently serves as coordinator for their Land Processes initiatives in Colombia.

Daniel Ojeda is a geographer with a master's in environmental conservation, public policy, and planning. He has worked in government agencies, focusing on public participation, social dialogue with ethnic groups, land tenure, and cadastral systems. Currently, he is providing advisory services to the Government of Colombia at the Instituto Geográfico Agustín Codazzi (IGAC) on ethnic-led geographic approaches.

Dr Catalina Ortiz (Chair) is an Associate Professor at the Development Planning Unit. Catalina is committed to a negotiated co-production of urban space grounded on ethics of care and engaged scholarship. Using decolonial and critical urban theory through knowledge co-production methodologies, Catalina engages with critical urban pedagogies, planning for equality, and southern urbanisms in Latin America and Southeast Asia.

Nancy Benítez Paéz is Chargé of Affairs of the Colombian Embassy to the United Kingdom.

This event is jointly organised with UBDC.

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