Keynote Speakers: Open Data for Open Cities Workshop

Official website and Pre-registration:


Another week closer to the Open Data for Open Cities workshop and we’ve got another bundle of updates for you. This week, we are introducing our key notes speakers to you.


Cosmina Radu

Cosmina currently works as part of the European Data Portal flagship project where she assists the European Commission with the development of its annual EU Open Data Maturity Assessment and the promotion and development of Open Data strategies across EU member states, EFTA countries and EU accession candidates. She is also involved in providing strategy and technology consultancy services on aspects such as open data, the European data economy, as well as modernization of public administration and user-centric eGovernment. As part of the public sector cluster in Germany, Cosmina has assisted the successful implementation of several digital transformation projects in the field of eGovernment and eJustice at national level. You can find out more here.



Andrew Turner

Andrew is the current director and Chief Technical Officer (CTO) of ESRI’s Research and Development Center in Washington, DC. His work focuses on cross-domain collaboration and democratizing the map making process. Andrew is an active member of many organizations developing and supporting open standards such as the OpenStreetMap, Open Geospatial Consortium, Open Web Foundation, OSGeo and the World Wide Web Consortium. He is also the co-founder of CrisisCommons, a global community of volunteers leveraging technology to assist in building solutions for disaster response, recovery, and rebuilding. Andrew will be giving a keynote an open data portals built to meet the needs of citizens. He will also be leading a hands-on session on using open geospatial information to design data driven initiatives. You can find out more here.



We are also happy to announce that we have teamed up with the Information Journal of MDPI and the Information journal is the official media partner of the Open Data for Open Cities workshop. /Information/ is a fully open access journal published monthly online by MDPI. It is indexed by Scopus (Elsevier), Ei Compendex, Emerging Sources Citation Index (ESCI – Web of Science). You can find out more here


We are very excited and can’t wait to receive you in Lund, Sweden. Register here if you are yet to do so.


@esri_spain workshops about #bigdata, #arcgis, #ML and much more

From February 21th to 22th, at Jaume I University – Castellon de la Plana (Spain) a set of courses were held by Esri Spain. Workshop’s main topics were about detecting spatial patterns, analyzing big data and applying ML with ArcGIS platform.

During two days over 20 students – from the Geo-C project and Mastergeotech students – attended the lectures given by Alberto Céspedes and Dariya Ordanovich from Esri Spain. By the presentation of several examples, Alberto and Dariya explained how concepts like Machine Learning, Spatial Big Data, and Spatial Patterns fit into ArcGIS.

Initially, Alberto Céspedes taught how to use Insights for ArcGIS creating easy-to-use dashboards which integrate spatial and tabular data for contextual analysis. Insights for ArcGIS is a web-based tool for data analytics that delivers an integrated view of the results, including charts, graphs, and maps.

The applicability of machine learning algorithms using ArcGIS tools was also presented during these workshops by the application of image detection for an extensive amount of satellite images. Geo-analytics tools from ArcGIS Pro provides a better understanding of an enormous amount of spatial data, integrating data web services with spatial geoprocessing tools.

Finally, Dariya Ordanovich illustrated how to connect, install and use R with ArcGIS, making use of the R-Bridge for ArcGIS. This open source project allows R users to work with ArcGIS data, and ArcGIS users to leverage the analysis capabilities of R.

For more information, about the tools used during this workshop, visit

The second version of the Open Data for Open Cities Workshop at the AGILE 2018 Conference – Call for Papers

Official website and Pre-registration:

21st AGILE International Conference on Geographic Information Science

Societal Geo-Innovation – Geospatial Technologies for All

Lund University-  Lund, Sweden 12 June 2018


Deadline: March 15, 2018

Continue reading

Framing your research to be the best story to tell. GeoC-UJI present in Agile PhD School 2017.

From October 30th to November 2nd, at University of Leeds – England, took place the 4th AGILE Ph.D. school.

AGILE PhD schools provide a forum for the next generation of scientists and research leaders to develop their own networks and to exchange ideas, as well as providing a set of core research skills. The Schools expose attendees to a diversity of leading-edge topic areas in GI and spatial information sciences and, critically, show them different experiences and expectations around supervision, prosecuting research.

During two days 12 PhD students – from different countries and universities – met to discuss their ongoing research, current progress, and future activities. The main goal was to develop generic research skills related to how to effectively write and post research. Each attendant should consider an effective storytelling as part of the outcomes to properly “sell” the idea that is trying to solve, framing the research problem and intermediate results obtained as part of a good story.

Diego Pajarito and Fernando Benitez from GEOTEC (GeoC project) were part of this group. In only five minutes fellows should explain what is their research about, current outcomes and how to face next steps. Students received feedback from professor Alexis Comber – who was in charge of this year PhD school – and from the rest of participants.

The agenda of the first day also had a practical session about “Agent-Based Modelling” from Nick Malleson, Associate Professor in Geographical Information Science in the School of Geography at The University of Leeds. The second day, Ian Philips – from the Institute for transportation studies – presented his talk “Minister love maps” related to trials and tribulations for an early researcher.

This school was an excellent opportunity to wrap up the basics tips and trick related to writing and posting research. Learning the fundamentals about research paper structure, as well as oral presentations, explaining why the audience should be interested in your talk, and selection of useful literature required were also considered.

For more information, about the AGILE Ph.D. School, visit

GEO-C student wins best poster award in AGILE 2017 #agilewag2017

From May 9 to May 12, 2017, in Wageningen, The Netherlands, the 20th AGILE conference took place. This year’s team: societal geo-innovation.

AGILE 2017 is the annual international conference on Geographic information science of association of geographic information laboratories in Europe. This event, organized by Wageningen University and the remarkable local committee, was an excellent opportunity to discuss the social impact of geo innovation over the past 20 years, and the most exciting and challenging topics for the next 20 years in GIScience.

With more than 200 participants AGILE 2017 had pre-conferences workshops, parallel sessions, keynote sessions, and posters session, about the most significance GIScience topics such as VIG, Data Quality, Spatial analysis, Open Data, GeoGames, smart cities and others.

The poster session had more than 30 posters related to different topics. GeoC UJI was part of this event with two posters. Citizense – A generic user-oriented participatory sensing framework by  Manh Khoi Ngo, Luis Rodríguez and Sven Casteleyn and City Data 3.0 – A generic initiative to promote and assess the reuse of geographic information in cities – Early steps by Fernando Benitez and Joaquin Huerta. We are proud to say that the latter won the best poster award at Agile 2017!

City Data 3.0 poster presented the preliminary results of research related to the reuse and discoverability of available open data in cities. This poster shows the barriers identified in four selected cities, main data quality criteria considered by data consumers and the most valuable services and formats used for developers and analysts in Bogota, Cali, Medellin, and Valencia.


More GEO-C contributions in AGILE 2017:

  • Short Paper presentation: One tool to spatialize all – sense of place, social capital and civic engagement by Albert Acedo, Germán Martín Mendoza Silva, Marco Painho and Sven Casteleyn
  • Organization of 5th Open Data for Open Cities participatory workshop, Joaquin Huerta, Fernando Benitez, Mohammad Mehdi Moradi, Pau Aragó Galindo
  • Organization of Agile Workshop on Geogames and Geoplay, Christoph Schlieder, Miek Gould, Diego Pajarito, Ola Ahlqvist, Thomas Heinz, Peter Kiefer, Vyron Antoniou

GEO-C students organised 5th Open Data for Open Cities participatory workshop at Agile 2017 #agilewag2017

From May 9 to May 12, 2017, in Wageningen, The Netherlands, the 20th AGILE conference took place.

As part of the pre-conference program, GEO-C candidates  Mehdi Moradi (Esr12) and Fernando Benitez (Esr11) organized the 5th Open Data for Open Cities participatory workshop, which presented an opportunity to discuss about reuse and discoverability of open data in cities. Topics such as Crime, Disaster Management, Spatial point process and geo-portals assessment were part of the selected papers and a set of short presentations.

How data user barriers can impact the usefulness level of open data was the discussion with experts of Open Data during this workshop.  Participants included Professor Bastian van Loenen, associate professor in open data in the Department of Architecture and The Built Environment at Delft University of Technology, and Heleen Vollers, one of the authors of the last analytic report of European Data portal, who was the KeyNote speaker. Her talk about barriers and benefits of working with Open Data brought participants new insights about how several European countries and enterprises are using open data to improve their innovation level, as well as how cities should deal with barriers in data producer or consumer perspective. For more information about this presentation, you can check the workshop’s website.

The afternoon session was more interactive, using wallpapers and some findings of City Data 3.0, participants covered three questions regarding reusing and finding open data.

  • Is the downloadable formats the effective way to promote the reuse of open data?
  • What should be the precise and efficient way to display data in open data portals?
  • Moreover, what should be the way to make the open data in cities available: through SDI portals, Open Data portals or both?

The last part of Open Data for Open Cities workshop was a point process analysis using the new methodology covered in the Ph.D. research of Mr. Moradi. Using Open Data from Medellin City in Colombia, related to car accidents, the last session was used to calculate an intensity network along streets of Medellin city. For more information about the methodology and steps to getting the results follow this link.

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

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.


Continue reading

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.

img_8689 img_8688

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.




Open Data for Open Cities GeoC Workshop in Geomundus conference

img_5339From November 4 to November 5, 2016, GeoC – UJI led Open Data for Open cities participatory workshop related to Open Data and its use. This activity  was held in last Geomundus conference that took a place last weekend in Castellon de la Plana – Spain.

With over 30 students from the consortium of Erasmus Mundus (EM) International Master’s program in Geospatial Technologies (Nova University, Munster University, UJI University) and also Geomundus keynote speaker Richard Sliuzas from Twente University,  topics such as available open data, re-use barriers and engagement mechanisms of cities open data portals were talked during this activity.

The overall aim of this workshop was to identify and discuss how open data consumer search and use open data services for a specific application. The activities made during this activity were:

Continue reading