Alexander J. Kent
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Mapping the globe, and the revolution in Russia’s geospatial capability
in Russian Grand Strategy in the era of global power competition
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Moscow has inherited the cartographic legacy of the Soviet Union, whose global mapping project forms the foundation of Russia's enhanced geospatial capability. The most comprehensive cartographic endeavour of the twentieth century involved the production of thousands of detailed topographic maps that covered the planet at various scales. This unparalleled resource of geospatial intelligence has encouraged a geostrategic perspective of truly planetary horizons, while the recent implementation of digital geospatial technologies, including geographical information systems (GIS) and satellite navigation, has enabled and facilitated Russian globally integrated operations. This chapter outlines Russia's geospatial trajectory from its inheritance of Soviet military mapping towards a unified geographic information space and evaluates the strategic advantages this offers.

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