Tokyo 2019

How East and West have Mapped and Influenced Each Other

Workshop held before the 29th International Cartographic Conference (ICC)
Tokyo, Japan
15 July 2019

In conjunction with the 29th International Cartographic Conference that will be held in Tokyo 15-20 July 2019 (, the ICA Commission on the History of Cartography and ICA Commission on Topographic Mapping take pleasure in inviting you to their joint international preconference workshop: ‘Cartography as a Cultural Encounter: How East and West have Mapped and Influenced Each Other’. The workshop will be held at the National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation, on 15 July 2019. The workshop is open to all cartographers, geographers, historians, map collectors, academics and lay persons interested in the diverse aspects of the history of cartography and topographic mapping.


The joint organizers invite papers on both western and eastern cartographic practice from a historical perspective, from the early modern era until the early 20th century. Themes include how each of these cartographic traditions developed over time, how they understood and mapped their own space but also how they mapped and saw Others, and how these diverse cartographic cultures and practices around the globe contributed to the dissemination of geographic knowledge.
Although the Symposium will primarily focus on these themes, submissions of high quality on endeavors in other fields of cartographic history and topographic mapping will also be considered.


The workshop venue is the National Museum of Emerging Science and Innovation, located in the beautiful Tokyo bay area. The sessions will take place in the Uranus Room. The conference venue is surrounded by more than 3 000 hotel rooms within walking distance.


The workshop programme is provisional and might be subject to change.
10:00‑10:15Walk in with coffee/tea
10:15‑10:30Opening address by the organizers
10:30‑12:15Session 1: Eastern Cartographic Practices and their Echo in the West
Professor Hirotada Kawamura - World image of early modern Japan
Professor Shigeru Kobayashi - Early modern maps of Japan as sources of Western cartography of East Asia during the 18th and 19th century
Bruce Jones - Early Chinese Bronze Ritual Vessel Cartography: How Trees, Mounds, Spirals, and Ponds Were Used to Document Early China’s Landscape
12:15‑13:30Lunch break (on your own)
13:30‑14:40Session 2: From Tradition to Modernity: Diverse Cartographic Cultures in India
Ankita Medhi - Cartographic history of India: Mapping India from the early modern ages till the 20th century
Bhanwar Vishvendra Raj Singh - The role of cartography in tiger conservation of Ranthambhore Tiger Reserve, India
14:40‑15:00Coffee break
15:00‑16:05Session 3 : Between the Old and The New World: A Cartographic Encounter
Aytaç Yürükçü - How East and West Cartographic Studies Influenced the Most Important 16th Century Ottoman Cartographer of Piri Reis and His World Maps
Mirela Altić - Jesuit View of Americas: A Cultural Encounter in the New World
16:05‑16:15Closing remarks


Two exhibitions concerned with the history of cartography are being held during the ICC in Tokyo. The first is an exhibit at the National Diet Library (NDL) located in the central part of Tokyo. On display are seven sets of maps which were selected from the collection of NDL as notable examples of Japanese early modern maps. Second is a special exhibition of maps of Japan by Sekisui Nagakubo (1717-1801) focusing on the role of his maps in the transition of the Western geographical image of Japan when they were brought to Europe. The exhibit is being held at the Koga Historical Museum, Koga City, Ibaraki Prefecture.
Both exhibitions are announced on the ICC homepage as Technical Visits on Wednesday 17 July as T-Course B. For more information on the exhibitions see


The workshop is open to everyone with an interest in the history of cartography and topographic mapping but requires participants to register. Registration will be open until the available seating is allocated and is free of charge.Please note that it is not necessary to be registered for the main ICC conference to be able to attend the workshop.
You can register for the workshop here.


Questions regarding the workshop can be directed to:
Mirela Altic – Vice-Chair ICA Commission on the History of Cartography: mirela.altic(at)
Alexander Kent – Chair ICA Commission on Topographic Mapping: alexander.kent(at)