"Strengthening relationships, links and connections in geographical names standardization and for sustainable development and pandemic recovery"

The 2023/third session of the United Nations Group of Experts on Geographical Names (UNGEGN) will be convened from 1 to 5 May 2023 at the United Nations Headquarters in New York. There will be 10 meetings of the 2023 session and each meeting will be three hours: 10 -1 a.m. and 3-6 p.m.


UNGEGN sessions provide a forum where experts from the interrelated fields of geography, cartography, geospatial information, linguistics and history, from across the world come together to learn and share best practices and norms, new developments in geographical names administration and standardization. The session also highlights the Group's role as an enabler in preserving cultural heritage and where appropriate support relevant aspects of the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. This session will address the theme "Strengthening relationships, links and connections in geographical names standardization and for sustainable development and pandemic recovery". This theme is not only aligned to the theme of the 2023 ECOSOC High-level Political Forum on sustainable development, but also to UNGEGN's Strategic Plan and Programme of Work 2021-2029, Strategy 2: Relationships, links and connections. Good relationships, links and connections are fundamental to all UNGEGN's strategies and are at the heart of the work of the United Nations. Therefore, it is beneficial to encourage focus on this topic and create a platform through the 2023 session to explore the various types of relationships (formal/informal, organizational/individual) employed by Member States to achieve their goals, and in turn support UNGEGNs vision.

Work Programme

The Group of Experts has a robust work programme anchored in its Strategic Plan and Programme of Work 2021-2029. The following are some major topics to be addressed during the session: - place names supporting sustainable development, toponymic data management and gazetteers, romanization systems, diversity and inclusion, capacity building in toponymy and geographical names as cultural heritage.

Other Activities

A series of side events consisting of working groups and divisional meetings, special workshops and an orientation session for new attendees will be held prior to and during the session. We are committed to keeping you, our national representatives, observers and special interest groups informed on the progress of session arrangements. Therefore, we encourage you to continue to monitor this website for updates and announcements.

The documents of the 3rd Session of UNGEGN will be available from the links below;

Documents (general)

  • GEGN.2/2023/INF/1
  • Documentation for the session
  • Agenda item 2 - Organizational matters

    2 a) - Adoption of the agenda

    2 b) - Organization of work

    Agenda item 3 - Reports of the Chair and the Secretariat

    Agenda item 4 a) - Reports: Governments on the situation in their countries and on the progress made in the standardization of geographical names

    Agenda item 4 b) - Reports: Divisions of the Group of Experts

    Agenda item 4 c) - Reports: Activities on the standardization of geographical names in Africa

    Agenda item 4 d) - Reports: National and international meetings and conferences

    Agenda item 5 a) - Cooperation and liaison with other organizations: International organizations;

    Agenda item 5 b) - Cooperation and liaison with other organizations: Economic Commission for Africa

    Agenda item 5 c) - Cooperation and liaison with other organizations: Committee of Experts on Global Geospatial Information Management

    item 6 a) - Names collection, office treatment, national authorities, features beyond a single sovereignty and international cooperation

    Agenda item 6 b) -National and international standardization of geographical names: Toponymic guidelines for map and other editors for international use

    Agenda item 7 - Social and economic benefits, supporting sustainable development, measures taken and proposed for the implementation of resolutions

    Agenda item 8 - Monitoring and evaluation of the strategic plan and programme of work, 2021-2029, and of the work of the Group of Experts

    Agenda item 9 - Issues of publicity for the Group of Experts and funding of Group projects

    Agenda item 10 - Toponymic education

    Agenda item 11 - Toponymic terminology

    Agenda item 12 - Geographical names as culture, heritage and identity, including indigenous, minority and regional languages and multilingual issues

    Agenda item 13 - Exonyms

    Agenda item 14 - Geographical names data management

    Agenda item 15 - Writing systems and pronunciation

    Agenda item 16 - Other geographical names issues

    Agenda item 17 - Presentation and adoption of decisions

    Agenda item 18 - Adoption of the report on the 2023 session

    Agenda item 19 - Arrangements for the 2025 session of the Group of Experts

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