Friday, May 30, 2014

Successful PhD defense within the Doctoral College "GIScience"

May, 28, 2014: Bakhtiar Feizizadeh successfully defended his PhD Thesis, entitled "Uncertainty, sensitivity and fuzzy sets in GIS Multicriteria decision analysis”.

Bakhtiar Feizizadeh convincingly presented and defended his research work. Prof. Blaschke served as the chair of the examination panel, Prof. Michael Leitner (Lousiana State University, USA) and Prof. Michael Hogson (University of South Carolina, USA) acted as discussants. After the presentation of the major achievements by the candidate a lively and challenging discussion examined the major achievements of the research work.  Nearly 45 visitors followed this interesting defence, and some participants took the chance to actively engage in this discussion.

This was the third defence in the context of the Doctoral College “GIScience”, since it was established in 2011. Bakhtiar Feizizadeh was an associated student of the DK. His defence offered him the opportunity to establish himself as an expert in the field of his work of research. With this degree Bakhtiar has achieved the next step in his career and we congratulate him to his performance. We wish him all the best for his future career when starting with his professorship at the University of Tabriz, Iran in fall 2014!

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

GEOBIA conference 2014

This year more than 10 highly qualified researchers represented the department of  Geoinformatics – Z_GIS at the GEOBIA conference in Thessaloniki / Greece  with challenging presentations.

Ivan Tomljenovic, a PhD student of the Doctoral College “GIScience” gave his presentation about “Potential and idiosyncrasy of object-based image analysis for airborne LiDAR-based building detection.  

With more than 130 presentations overall, we are proud of Ivan having been the recipient of the “Best presentation Award”. We congratulate him to this success!

The GEOBIA conference demonstrates the world-wide interest in the emerging field of Geographic Object-Based Image Analysis. GEOBIA events bring together the technical and scientific community of remote sensing and environmental sciences, promoting the development of GEOBIA concepts, methods and applications. 

More than 240 participants coming from the fields of environment and mineral resource management, agriculture, forestry and urban development, had the opportunity to communicate new research results, share technical information, network with fellow experts, and build communities of common interests.

Further information about the conference:

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Master Programme in Applied Geoinformatics

Careers for experts with a spatial view
Master of Science in Applied Geoinformatics

The English language Msc study programme in Applied Geoinformatics at the Salzburg University Department of Geoinformatics is attracting keen interest from students worldwide. We are following the philosophy that students first need to understand an academic domain well, then on a graduate level focus on Geoinformatics as a methodology helping to solve real world geospatial problems through interdisciplinary approaches. 

Admission is possible from a diversity of undergraduate backgrounds like Geography, Computer Science, Planning, Environmental Studies or Resource Management. An entry phase is designed to account for these different access pathways into Geoinformatics. Based on a modular curriculum this programme creates a rich and stimulating learning environment with an increasing emphasis on problem- and project-oriented learning.

Flyer MSc AGI (pdf) * Website

GI_Forum 2014: Early bird fee until May 25

Salzburg, July 1-4

Early bird until May 25!

Call for Poster until June 6!

Submit your poster until June 6, 2014 and be part of our poster competition. Submitted posters are automatically included in the AGIT / GI_Forum poster competition.

Keynote Speakers
We proudly present a preview of our excellent keynote speakers in the area of GI science for GI_Forum 2014:
  • Andrè Skupin San Diego State University
  • Christoph Schlieder University of Bamberg
  • Michael Gould ESRI
  • Diana Sinton UCGIS


Monday, May 19, 2014

GIScience colloquium with joint discussion: Crisis mapping and humanitarian aid

Date: Monday, May, 26, 2014;  17:15 – 18:15

Place: Techno-Z, GI-lecture-room: SC30OG1.E07  (Schillerstraße 30, building 14, 1st floor)

Speaker: Jen Ziemke Crisis Mapping
(Crisis Mappers, John Carroll University, Harvard Humanitarian Initiative)

Jen Ziemke, Co-Founder & Co-Curator of the International Network of Crisis Mappers, will be speaking to us about how a network of activists emerged to help leverage crowdsourcing and geospatial analytics for humanitarian response, in 2009. She will discuss some of what the network has learned together over the past few years; the core challenges and issues that keep resurfacing, and what might be next in this evolving new area of inquiry. Jen has her PhD from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, is Associate Professor of Political Science at John Carroll University and Fellow at the Harvard Humanitarian Initiative.

Speaker: Shadrock Roberts - Geographic Data in Humanitarian Relief and Aid: Challenges and directions for future research
(University of Georgia, Center for Geospatial Research)

Shadrock will discuss various research and professional projects that he has been involved with - mostly for enumerating refugee populations using remote sensing - and the challenges that Shadrock has faced in different projects. While some of the challenges are technical, many of them are not, and this will lead him to question organizational and political issues around the sharing of geographic data.

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Start of ARISE project: Adaptation and Decision Support via Risk Management Through Local Burning Embers

The 2013 floods in Central Europe have been a stark reminder of how vulnerable and hazard-prone European countries are and how costly disasters are even today both in terms of economic damage and loss of lives. In Austria and elsewhere, extreme events such as heavy precipitation, storms and debris flows are expected to differentially exhibit changes in terms of severity, frequency and duration. Sustainable and scientifically sound disaster risk reduction is considered a key element of climate change adaptation strategies by both the academic and policymaking worlds. IPCC’s Burning Embers – Reasons for Concern illustrate the future global risk development split into five categories and visualize the trends.
 IPCC'S "buring embers" diagram (2001)

The overall aim of the ARISE project – funded by the Austrian Climate Research Programme (ACRP) - is to develop a decision support system for climate-sensitive iterative risk management as a key adaptation approach. Its objectives are (1) to bridge the gaps between global initiatives related to climate change and disaster risk reduction and national, subnational as well as local risk management and adaptation needs,(2) to downscale the “Burning Embers - Reasons for Concern” to the local level, and (3) to support the building of resilience and adaptation capacities. A framework for iterative risk management and scenarios will be developed and adaptation measures tested in the City of Lienz, Austria. The consortium of 8 partners is led by alpS GmbH. The project was kicked off on April 2, 2014 in Innsbruck. For more information please visit the project website or contact Stefan Kienberger

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Z_GIS’ iSLIDE team conducts Landslide Mapping workshops in Taiwan

In a series of workshops at the National Taiwan University (April 2/3, 2014) and the Disaster Prevention Research Center (DPRC) at the National Cheng Kung University (April 7-11, 2014), the Salzburg team shared its expertise in computer-based landslide mapping with researchers and experts in Taiwan. The workshops created an ideal platform for sharing and exchanging knowledge on data, methods and product validation in semi-automated landslide mapping and object-based image analysis (OBIA) using multi-source remote sensing data.

Recent iSLIDE project
results comprising products such as landslide (change) maps and mapping routines were presented and discussed with the experts on-site. Field trips to the Baichi and Huaguoshan catchment provided an opportunity to obtain data that will serve in the validation process of maps that were recently produced by applying semi-automated workflows. Z_GIS looks forward to continuing the successful collaboration between Austria and Taiwan in the field of digital landslide mapping.

Thursday, May 8, 2014

GIScience Colloquium - Risk Information Management – The Complexity Challenge

Date: Monday, May, 12, 2014; 12:30 – 13:30
Place: Techno-Z, ZGIS-meeting room: SC30EG0.E07 (Schillerstraße 30, building 15)
Presenter: Horst Kremers, DGfK Kommission „Risiken, Katastrophen, Sicherheit“, Berlin

Risk Information Management – The Complexity Challenge
There is growing recognition of information need in all the complex phases of disaster risk prevention. All actors make their decisions and have their situational information need for doing so. The dynamics of situation development not only need to be observed, described, and modeled, but also the consequences on population and environment need to be anticipated, alternatives discussed and the typical dynamic recursiveness of management practice needs to be fully supported.

We currently are far from satisfying implementations for such tasks. In this presentation, the principal needs of appropriate pre-disaster situation modeling, pre-implemented information availability, collection, analysis and flow, elements of risk information infrastructure, information mining in disaster big data, and formal process description are highlighted and presented for discussion.