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Biographical entry Lambert, Bruce Philip (1912 - 1990)


12 February 1912
Gosnells, Western Australia, Australia
2 April 1990
Canberra, Australian Capital Territory, Australia
Public servant and Surveyor


Bruce Lambert was a surveyor who as Director of the National Mapping Office for over 25 years from 1951 oversaw programs to publish topographic maps of Australia at scales of 1:250,000 and 1:100,000 as well as national geodetic and levelling surveys. This included the introduction of a number of new surveying techniques and the standardisation of map symbols and specifications. In 1961 he became secretary of the cartographic working group of the committee on Antarctic research. He was also heavily involved in the border survey between Papua New Guinea and Irian Jaya from 1964 to 1972. Lambert's further international involvement included a United Nations mapping project in the Philippines and as a representative of the International Union of Geodesy and Geophysics at the UN cartographic office. Australia's centre of gravity, near Kulgera, Northern Territory, was named the Lambert Gravitational Centre. The Lambert Glacier in the Prince Charles mountains of Eastern Antarctica was named after him, as was a major shelf valley lying off the north-west coast of Australia.



Education - Qualified as a licensed surveyor
1936 - 1939
Career position - Surveyor, State Electricity Commission, Victoria
1939 - 1945
Career position - Served with the Royal Australian Engineers and the Royal Army Survey Corps
1946 - 1951
Career position - Deputy-Director of National Mapping, Commonwealth Department of the Interior
1951 - 1977
Career position - Director, National Mapping Office and Chairman, National Mapping Council
1954 - 1974
Career position - Member, Australian Institute of Cartographers
1954 - 1974
Career position - Fellow, Institution of Surveyors, Australia
1960 - 1977
Career position - Secretary, international Working Group on Antarctic Geodesy and Cartography
Award - Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE)
1974 - 1977
Career position - Fellow, Australian Institute of Cartographers
Award - Honorary Fellow, Australian Institute of Cartographers
Life event - Retired
Award - Honorary DSc, University of New South Wales
1979 - 1983
Career position - Representative of the International Union of Geodesy and Geophysics at the UN cartographic office
1980 - 1981
Career position - Consultant to United National mapping project in the Philippines
Award - G. P. Thompson Foundation Medal, Royal Geographical Society of Australasia
Award - Honorary Fellow, Institution of Surveyors, Australia
Award - Inaugural Gold Medal, Australian Institute of Cartographers

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Published resources

Book Sections

Journal Articles

  • Anon, 'AIC Gold Medal awarded to Bruce Lambert', Cartography, 17 (2) (1988), 56-8. Details
  • Anon, 'Bruce Philip Lambert Honorary Fellow', Australian Surveyor, 34 (4) (1988), 423-4. Details
  • Goodrick, Byrne, 'Dr. Bruce Philip Lambert, OBE', Australian Surveyor, 35 (2) (1990), 200-1. Details
  • Lambert, B. P., 'The National Mapping Council of Australia forty years on', Cartography, 14 (2) (1985), 112-5. Details


Helen Cohn