Spatial-Temporal Predictive Modeling with Open Source and Open Data for Urban Areas Workshop – AAG Workshops 2017


W2_3 Spatial-Temporal Predictive Modeling with Open Source and Open Data for Urban Areas – Kick – off Workshop
Thursday, April 6, 9:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m.
Organizers: Luis Santa (GEO-C Doctorate in Geoinformatics: Enabling Open Cities) & Shivam Gupta (GEO-C Doctorate in Geoinformatics: Enabling Open Cities)
Capacity: 25
Cost/person: $5.00
Room: Beacon B, Third Floor, Sheraton

The half-day workshop is aimed as a collaborative exercise, which extends ongoing research for developing open smart cities, using open data and open source statistical and GIS tools. Also, to provide a comprehensive but digestible introduction to the most common methods of analysis and geomatics work flows which are nowadays often encountered when tackling various issues in urban agglomerations. Given a multi-tiered nature of contemporary web applications, we propose an interactive session devoted to a R-supporting middleware, as well as the of statistical packages for popular web frameworks. The exercises in form of examples from fields of air pollution, climate and transportation among others.

2nd CALL FOR PAPERS for Open Data for Open Cities Workshop at the AGILE 2017 Conference.

We invite all who want to be a part of a discussion on the real impact of Open Data in cities and spatial point analysis process on linear networks to present their works in our workshop.

Once the data consumers have access to open data, next step is to go depth and come up with practical methods of analysis together with accessible results for citizens.

Keynote Speaker:

We are very pleased to announce to our keynote speaker, Heleen Vollers. is a Senior Management Consultant at Capgemini Consulting. She works in the Public Insights & Data practice of Capgemini Consulting where she is a member of Capgemini’s global EU account.

Heleen is actively involved in the development of the European Data Portal and associated services, on behalf of the European Commission – DG CONNECT. Beyond being just a Portal, the project offers support services to countries as they mature on their Open Data journey. In addition, there is a strong focus on driving a user community and understanding the benefits of Open Data. Heleen leads the research work on measuring the level of Open Data maturity across Europe.


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CfP Workshop @ ECIS2017: Opening Smart Cities: Challenges to engage citizens through information systems

We, some of the ESRs from the “GEO-C – Geoinformatics: Enabling Open Cities” project, would like to invite you to our half-day pre-conference workshop part of the 25th Annual European Conference on Information Systems (ECIS 2017). This workshop entitled “Opening Smart Cities: Challenges to engage citizens through information systems” aims to explore and discuss the potential of information systems to engage citizens in the development of smart cities through e-participation technologies.

The session will take place on June 6, 2017, in conjunction with the ECIS 2017 in Guimarães, Portugal. The deadlines for short papers (max. 2000 words) submissions are on April 3, 2017 and we encourage you to submit your paper as a .pdf to us, along with the authors’ names and contact details to The main topics we will address will be:

  • E-participation in smart cities
  • Citizen engagement platforms in smart cities
  • Open data and governance towards open and inclusive cities
  • Participatory and critical design in urban decision-making processes
  • New kinds of interaction between citizens and other stakeholders in open cities
  • Different performance of citizens on using ICT for e-participation: gender, age, education, etc
  • Reflections for e-participation: Best practices, failures & practical challenges.

We are looking forward to your submission!
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“Ontdek je Buurt” awarded at the UX Linked Data Challenge

GEO-C participated in the UX Linked Data Challenge from November 3rd to December 2nd 2016. In particular, a member of the GEO-C consortium participated in the “Buying a house challenge”. The challenge aimed at increasing the business value of an online platform to rent, purchase, and sell houses, apartments, and commercial properties in the Netherlands. The team of the GEO-C researcher (Team members: Bart-Jan de Leuw, CGI;  Saskia van der Elst, Ordina; Gerard Persoon, Gpersoon bv; Auriol Degbelo, University of Muenster) built “Ontdek je Buurt” which won the award for the second place during the challenge. “Ontdek je Buurt” is a JavaScript Chrome extension which was developed using open source technologies and integrates existing open data (e.g., open street map data, childcare locations and topographical data from the Netherlands). It enables potential buyers (i.e. citizens) to explore neighbourhoods and find the most liveable place for them.

Smart City Expo, perspective from geospatial researchers

Attending the Smart City Expo World Congress (SCEWC) is a common desire within ITC-related professionals and researchers, you find in a single place all commercial solutions, some customers showing their own experience with Smart City projects, some Experts discussing about future trends, and academics interested on meeting “Real” products to feed their own research.

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Between thousands of attendees there were seven Geotec members walking through Europa Fira, listening to interesting and motivational speeches, while digging into multiple ideas from entrepreneurs, local government agents, young researchers and well-known companies.

Most remarkable issues there at the Expo were related to:circular economy, sustainable mobility, open data and artificial intelligence. Regarding there were…

Discussion about Sustainable Mobility was a full track on the agenda, and walking/cycling experiences were presented everywhere, a mix of mobile apps, infrastructure plan, sharing/rented projects were presented. Main tendency is to have less private individual vehicles and more public and shared bicycles, therefore cycling infrastructure will be part of this transformation. The session “Walkable and cyclable cities” easily resumes those innitiatives.

SCEWC2016 offered a rich set of keynote speakers, but Parag Kanna’s presentation about connected cities had an important effect on attendees, his map-based speech showed future trends on urbanization and development of future cities (also smart). With a global view of connections he explained briefly how the world is showing us tendencies that must be attended, with his web tool those tendencies could be explored and analyzed.

Another interesting Keynote, gave by Susan Etlinger, was about how Artificial Intelligence and Machine Learning can be implemented in new solutions for cities, enhancing new developments such as image recognition, self-driving cars and conversational assistants.

Finally, the importance of sharing economy and governance of the city commons was presented by David Bollier. This alternative forms of creating economical development is rising on cities like Barcelona, looking to strengthen local business and entrepreneurship.


Prof. Michael Gould presented the preliminary results of the ESR07 project in the “Solutions for More Inclusive and Participative Cities (elevator pitch format)” track.

A full three days event is always exhausting, but attending during different days as a group will allow to identify multiple trends and development, this exercise helped Geotec on having a global look at state-of-the-art commercial solutions for Smart Cities.

ESR were also in contact with local partners from the program. Castellón City Hall representatives were present at the event, looking for solutions to improve the city. Also ESR15 shared experiences in the Urbiotica’s stand, who presented its solution to different stakeholders.  

(*) Geotec Researches who attended the Smart City Expo: Fernando Benitez (ESR11), David Frias,  Khoi Ngo (ESR06), Diego Pajarito (ESR07), Manuel Portela (ESR15), Luis Rodriguez, Sergi Trilles, Michael Gould.




GEO-C researchers presented their results on the International UCAmI Conference 2016


The 10th International Conference on Ubiquitous Computing and Ambient Intelligence UCAmI 2016 took place from November 29th to December 2nd in Canary Islands. The Spanish based conference was a place to meet different Smart City related topics that involve technologies from eHealth to Internet of Things solutions. This openness of topics helped to know how different approaches can be interrelated in a Smart City context, providing challenges in communication, protocol integrations and citizen involvement.

GEO-C Members assisted to present two papers. Firstly, Manuel Portela (ESR15) presented at the HCI track its research project “Methods to observe and evaluate interactions with everyday context-aware objects”. The talk was centered on Design Research methods such as Ethnography and Ethnomethodology that are being used in the project to evaluate new interactions in the urban space.

Secondly, Auriol Degbelo presented the paper on “Toolkits for smarter cities: a brief assessment“. This short paper looked into the areas of smart city toolkit research which are relatively uncovered by the scientific community. The gist of the presentation was that toolkits for smarter cities are emerging, but aspects such as user-centeredness, component integration, openness and documentation are still relatively uncovered.

The event was a good opportunity to meet new developments in the academic scenario of Smart Cities in Spanish Universities.

Paper accepted for publication in JeDeM.

The paper  “Designing Semantic APIs for Open Government Data” (Authors: Auriol Degbelo, Sergio Trilles, Christian Kray, Devanjan
, Nicholas Schiestel, Jonas Wissing and Carlos Granell) has been accepted for publication in the eJournal of eDemocracy and Open Government.

Abstract: Many countries currently maintain a national data catalog, which provides access to the available datasets – sometimes via an Application Programming Interface (API). These APIs play a crucial role in realizing the benefits of open data as they are the means by which data is discovered and accessed by applications that make use of it. This article proposes semantic APIs as a way of improving access to open data. A semantic API helps to retrieve datasets according to their type (e.g., sensor, climate, finance), and facilitates reasoning about and learning from data. The article examines categories of open datasets from 40 European open data catalogs to gather some insights into types of datasets which should be considered while building semantic APIs for open government data. The results show that the probability of inter-country agreement between open data catalogs is less than 30 percent, and that few categories stand out as candidates for a transnational semantic API. They stress the need for coordination – at the local, regional, and national level – between data providers of Germany, France, Spain, and the United Kingdom.