Last night at the 125th Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) Member Meeting, held in Frascati, Italy, Steve Liang was presented the OGC’s prestigious Kenneth D. Gardels Award. The Gardels Award is presented each year to an individual who has made an outstanding contribution to advancing OGC’s vision of building the future of location with community and technology for the good of society.

Steve Liang, Professor and Rogers IoT Research Chair at University of Calgary and Founder and CTO of SensorUp, was selected as the 2022 recipient because of his pioneering work in sensor technologies in the geospatial context. 

A member of the nominating committee noted that Steve was “the first within OGC to come up with a more RESTful API and thus one of the pioneers of leveraging web standards for publishing spatial data.” Another committee member noted that Steve has “been a promoter for OGC for some time and has done an exceptional job promoting the OGC to the IoT world. Steve does a lot internally as well as externally as part of this promotion.”

“We thank Steve for chairing the SensorThings SWG, the Sensor Web Enablement DWG, the CDB SWG, and the University DWG,” commented Jeffrey Harris, OGC Chair. “We also appreciate Steve’s efforts as the principal editor for the two SensorThings API Standards and for applying those Standards to numerous real-world installations in a variety of domains. Steve has been instrumental in forging strong links with the geospatial community across the globe. Steve’s skill in bridging communities exemplifies the values associated with the Gardels Award.”

In all this work, Steve exemplifies the highest values of OGC, and has demonstrated the principles, humility, and dedication in promoting spatial technologies to address the needs of humanity that characterized Kenn Gardels’ career and life.

About the OGC Gardels Award
The Kenneth D. Gardels Award is a gold medallion presented each year by the Board of Directors of the Open Geospatial Consortium, Inc. (OGC) to an individual who has made exemplary contributions to OGC’s consensus standards process. Award nominations are made by members – the prior Gardels Award winners – and approved by the Board of Directors. The Gardels Award was conceived to memorialize the spirit of a man who dreamt passionately of making the world a better place through open communication and the use of information technology to improve the quality of human life.
Kenneth Gardels, a founding member and a director of OGC, coined the phrase “Open GIS.” Kenn died of cancer in 1999 at the age of 44. He was active in popularizing the open source Geographic Information System (GIS) ‘GRASS’, and was a key figure in the Internet community of people who used and developed that software. Kenn was well known in the field of GIS and was involved over the years in many programs related to GIS and the environment. He was a respected GIS consultant to the State of California and to local and federal agencies, and frequently attended GIS conferences around the world.
Kenn is remembered for his principles, courage, and humility, and for his accomplishments in promoting spatial technologies as tools for preserving the environment and serving human needs.
More information on the OGC Gardels Award, including previous winners, can be found at:


Gardel's Award, SensorThings