The Royal Geographical Society of Queensland Ltd

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RGSQ Special Interest Groups

Special Interest Groups (SIGs) provide the opportunity for members to indulge in the incredibly diverse topics that are generally called 'geography'. Whatever your interests and whatever your level of knowledge, from casual to career to academic discipline, there's a place in a SIG where you can enjoy learning, contributing and chatting in the company of members with similar interests.

Members are encouraged to join in one or more sigs and participate for as little or as much time as convenient. There is no cost to join in a SIG (except for contributions to the occasional yummy food - sorry to geographically remote members who have to provide their own goodies). Yes group members can be from anywhere on the planet, with Internet.

You are most welcome to ask about our SIGs, as outlined below, propose new areas for investigation, or put forward any ideas or suggestions by contacting the office or emailing

Archive Group

Archive group member Peter Lloyd has completed a detailed report on the Society’s mostly pre-2003 collections of lantern slides, print albums and trek albums as well as CD, VHS and DVD format images. With the assistance of Graham Rees from the Website Group, third millennia technology is being trialled to collect, identify, describe and manage digital images taken of Society activities since 2003, and to digitise earlier material. It is hoped that, once collected and organised, the Society’s still and moving images can be a resource for the website, displays, presentations, publications, and other uses. Peter has also compiled a register of the Society’s artefacts and memorabilia. This is being used in the current Preservation Needs Assessment project funded by the National Library of Australia to identify the preservation needs for the Society’s significant artefacts. Any members who wish to be involved to help with archives are most welcome.


 Members of the RGSQ at Canarvon Gorge, Qld 1937

The Society has an extensive collection of records, maps, books, magazines and artefacts dating back to when the society was formed in 1885. RGSQ Member Rob Cook has recently become the Collections Coordinator.

In 2017 the Society commissioned Judith McKay and Bill Kitson to prepare a report, Royal Geographical Society Of Queensland; Significance Assessment of the Collection, to explore the significance of the documents and artefacts contained in the collections.

As a result, an internal review of the management of the collection, as a whole, is under way. It is anticipated that the review might recommend the implementation of a library information system to catalogue the collection, and to improve access to it for members of the Society, researchers and interested members of geographic community. It is hoped that on-line access to the catalogue will be able to be provided through the Trove service maintained by the National Library of Australia, and in other ways.

Geography in Conversation

This is a new group formed in 2022 which aims to organise a series of monthly discussions to engage members and friends in robust conversation on current geographical topics. We plan to have an underlying theme of sustainability. The discussions will be participant driven so don’t hesitate to send in your ideas for topics and speakers.

The evening will take the form of a Q&A forum with 2 spokespersons with deep knowledge of the topic and a moderator. Arrive for light refreshments and then settle in to participate in the exchange of views and knowledge.

Co-convenors are Graeme Rush, Helen Sutherland, Keith Treschman, Pamela Tonkin, Riley Kernaghan, Stella Rush and Stephen Schwer.

Library Group

Management of the RGSQ’s “Ken Sutton Memorial Library” is led by Jim Graham, assisted by Neville McManimm. Geographical journals feature strongly in the library, together with a small collection of books, some rare, on geographical education and the geography of Queensland. There is a text based catalogue of a significant part of the library which members are welcome to browse. At this time, the catalogue is a single user system available only on a computer at Gregory Place. The library is for reference only - items may not be removed from Gregory Place.

Map Collection Group

The Society’s map collection consists mainly of maps relating to Queensland – historical, heritage and modern – but also includes maps of the rest of Australia and the world. Map formats include topographic, orthophoto, cadastral, thematic and others as well as satellite images. Several thousand maps are held. The collection is maintained by Society members, Ralph Carlisle and Peter Nunan. Any members who wish to be involved in any capacity are most welcome to join this Group.

Map Group

Monument for Surveyor Robert Dixons Base Line marker. Warrill View Peak Crossing road, Harrisville. August 2020

Map Group’s activities are a vibrant part of the Society. This special interest group (SIG), coordinated by Kay Rees, Len Lowry and Neville McManimm, has a focus on maps and mapping related activities. The group meets monthly and hosts lectures, events including visits to institutions and map collections. Activities have included special mapping projects such as mapping parts of the Milton and Nundah suburbs as part of the Open Street Map project. External visits have included private tours of map collections in the National Library Canberra, War Memorial in Canberra and Queensland State Archives. The Map Group hosts its own internal lectures every two months with external guest speakers or members from within the Map Group. Lecture topics have included Interpreting Aviation Charts, Lidar in Digital Mapping, Map Making for Orienteering and the Role of Drones in Modern Geography. Map Group has a programme of events from February to December. We encourage anyone who has an interest in maps and mapping, whether historical or cutting-edge technology to join the Map Group.

Young Geographers' Group

 Yabba Creek, Queensland 2018

This group aims to build the student and young professional membership base of the society and to improve the engagement of younger members in society events. Future goals include a broader range of career networking or development activities and potentially extending the reach of the group to engage with and inspire high school aged students to consider geography as a future career pathway.

 A Facebook space in which tertiary geography students and early to mid-career professionals can socialise, network and explore career pathway opportunities.

The Royal Geographical Society of Queensland Ltd
Gregory Place, Level 1/28 Fortescue St, Spring Hill Qld 4000
Tel 07 3368 2066
ABN 87 014 673 068 | ACN 636 005 068

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