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There are a number of niche roles in the surveying industry. They may be unique but, in principle, they contain the same core values and approaches needed within all aspects of surveying. In most cases, employees within the specialisations will start out in a more traditional surveying job and then move to one of these fields depending on their individual abilities, interests and particular skill set.
Arts and Antiquities
Like any other commodity or product, works of art, antiques and historical artefacts have a value in the market place. Providing that there is a willing seller and a willing buyer, a market place can be created and therefore traded on. Surveyors in this field must value the objects, inform both buyers and sellers how to care for them and insure them at the right price. Surveyors can either trade privately with direct buyers or work within the auction trade.
Older buildings and historical sites of importance suffer from usage, often more so than modern buildings. As a result, they can deteriorate quickly, particularly if they are ancient or considered otherwise fragile. These buildings need to be restored to ensure that they are safe and not in danger of losing their original look. Surveyors must analyse what the buildings are made from and how to strengthen them without affecting their appearance or usability. This is an extremely delicate process and requires intricate knowledge of building methods and restoration processes both old and new.
It is too easy to see surveying as only looking at commercial entities, such as offices, and infrastructure. However, all parts of the earth need to be measured and this is the role of the land surveyor. Surveyors specialising in Geomatics are principally concerned with drawing maps and plotting boundaries. These maps can range from images showing what the sea bed is shaped like to the outline of the Amazon rainforest. Boundary identification is also essential for countries, states, counties and boroughs. Surveyors draw out maps that are infallibly accurate and are used as a basis for area understanding from then on.
This is an extremely competitive field. Candidates need a strong background in Mathematics and Design to succeed.
Mineral surveyors are concerned with quarries and mines. They must analyse not only the surface but all that lies underneath it. Being able to deduce what lies below the earth decides whether or not some of the world’s largest companies decide to begin work. A strong background in Geology, Geography, Mathematics and Surveying is usually needed for this type of work.
Rural surveyors specialise in farms and land usage and valuation. In order to value a farm a surveyor will have to take all factors into account. It is not only as simple as the size of the land but it can become as detailed as how much livestock the farmer has per square hectare or acre.
Should a surveyor have amassed a considerable amount of experience over their career they can be hired solely as a management consultant or for the purpose of dispute resolution. Dispute resolution often relies on a surveyor who can hear arguments from different parties concerned with the same project and come to a fair and correct decision regarding how they are to move forward.