History

Origin

EUROGEO was first established in 1979 under the name of European Standing Conference of Geography Teachers Association (ESCGTA). In the beginning it was an association of associations. In 1994, when other European countries became members, the association took the name of its bulletin, EUROGEO: European Network of Geography Teachers´ Associations. The principal aims of that organisation were to advise and promote the European dimension in geographical education and teaching about the countries of Europe as a contribution towards the development of a European dimension in education. Members were geography teacher associations and geographical associations from around Europe. Presidents of these associations or their representatives attended the bi-annual meetings that were originally organised and funded by the European Commission in Brussels.

First activities

EUROGEO was led by a small committee of volunteers headed by Henk Meier representing the Dutch Geographical Association (KNAG). In between each of these conferences a EUROGEO bulletin was published.

Conferences and Bulletin of EUROGEO (1980-1996)
Conference year Place Bulletin year Issue Topic
1980 Brussels (Belgium) 1981 0 Migration
1982 Brussels (Belgium) 1983 1 Tourism
1984 Paris (France) 1985 2 Regional Problems
1986 Brussels (Belgium) 1987 3 Industry
1988 Brussels (Belgium) 1989 4 Energy & Environment
1990 Brussels (Belgium) 1991 5 Agriculture
1992 Brussels (Belgium) 1993 6 Traffic & Transportation
1994 Brussels (Belgium) 1995 7 Demography & Migration
1996 Salzburg (Austria) 1997 8 Geographical aspects from different countries

Twentieth century

In 1987 EUROGEO applied for and was accepted as an international NGO with representation at the Council of Europe. Since this time representatives from the association have participated in NGO meetings in Strasbourg, being the voice of geography and geographers there. In 2003 the status of EUROGEO, along with other NGOs, was reviewed and the association became a fully participating NGO at the Council of Europe.

In 1999 a successful application was made by EUROGEO for a European Minerva Project (Euro.Geo) to produce materials that promote European citizenship through the use of ICT in teaching geography in school education. The project was coordinated by Karl Donert at Liverpool Hope University.

At the Liverpool meeting of EUROGEO in 2001, members of the association decided to apply for a project to share news and information about the state and status of Geography in Europe. The project produced a Web site, interactive maps of Europe as well as teaching and training resources in different languages.

Henk Meijer decided to stand down and in 2002 and during the EUROGEO Annual meeting held in Madeira, Portugal at elections for new Presidium Karl Donert was elected President of the association.

Twenty-first century: Networking: the HERODOT Network for Geography in higher education and teacher training

In 2002, the proposal to establish a Socrates-Erasmus Thematic Network project on university Geography and the Bologna Process funded by the European Commission was successful. This was the HERODOT Network for Geography in Higher Education. This thematic network was coordinated by Liverpool Hope University and led by Karl Donert. HERODOT sought to improve the quality of learning and teaching in higher education and teacher training and address issues raised by the Bologna Process like quality assurance, the use of new technologies and research in geographical education.

There were two phases of the project that ran from 2002–2005 and 2006–2009. A large number of publications were produced and many events were held around Europe dealing with issues relating to Geography in higher education and teacher training. Members of EUROGEO participated in the funded network. Under HERODOT, Geography became a subject assessed under the project Tuning Educational Structures in Europe.[4]

By 2009 HERODOT had connected more than 300 organizations throughout all European countries and 60 partners from other countries around the world. These partners joined HERODOT meetings and workshops to share their ideas, innovations and best practice online and face-to-face. The broad partnership of the network included universities and research centres, companies and NGOs as well as teacher training and other education bodies like Ministries of Education. Many of those who participated in the work of HERODOT are still actively collaborating in follow up activities, project and meetings.

The idea to establish a European Geography association that supported not only teachers and educators, but also geographers working in other professions came as a result of the discussions that took place at several Herodot meetings.

At the annual meeting of EUROGEO in Liverpool in September 2008, member associations unanimously agreed to change the legal status and remit of the association. This was presented to HERODOT partners, after which members of the EUROGEO Presidium and the HERODOT Core Group held a joint meeting to form a working group to restructure the association as a membership organisation.

After lengthy discussions both organisations held a joint meeting in Ayvalik, Turkey in June 2009, where the new EUROGEO association held its first elections and passed its revised statutes. Karl Donert was then elected president of EUROGEO. This was the final meeting of the HERODOT network. The new, restructured organisation now deals with educational, scientific, research and applied parts of Geography with a European perspective.

EUROGEO cooperates with many other international institutions and associations including the AAG, SEAGA and the International Geographical Union (IGU) and is a stakeholder organisation in the UNEP, EyeonEarth and “Geo for All” initiatives.

Since 1987 EUROGEO  has had participatory status in the Council of Europe. In 2017 UN ECOSOC granted EUROGEO special consultative status for United Nations.

 

Conferences

The Association organizes events and activities for members, the most relevant of these is the annual conference and the Annual Meeting.

Annual Conferences
Year Place Host Institution Topic
2007 Stockholm (Sweden) Stockholm University Geography for Society: Putting Bologna into Action
2008 Liverpool (United Kingdom) Liverpool Hope University Future Prospects in Geography
2009 Ayvalik (Turkey) Balikesir University Celebrating Geographical Diversity
2010 Prague (Czech Republic) Charles University Sustainable Geographies
2011 Athens (Greece) Laboratory of Geography of the National Technical University of Athens Geography: Your world – A European Perspective
2012 Dublin (Ireland) St. Patrick’s University College Geography and Global Understanding: Connecting the Sciences
2013 Bruges (Belgium) Ghent University Geography: Linking Tradition and Future
2014 Valleta (Malta) University of Malta The power of Geography and the Role of Spatial Information
2015 Ankara (Turkey) Turkish Association of Geographers & Gazi University Communicating Geography: serving our world
2016 Málaga (Spain) University of Málaga, Real Sociedad Geográfica de España & Asociación de Geógrafos Españoles Geographic Information: for a better world
2017 Amsterdam (The Netherlands) Key challenges for geographical education
2018 Cologne(Germany) University of Cologne Geography for all 15 – 16 March 2018
2019 Paris (France) Teaching Geography in challenging times 14 – 16 March 2019
2019 Ljubljana(Slovenia) University of Ljubljana Hidden Geographies 29 – 31 August 2019
2020 Madrid (Spain) Universidad Nacional de Educación a Distancia Sustainable Development Goals for All 23 – 24 April 2020