To organize the workshop outputs in a common framework, we propose to publish the proceedings in a joint volume in the Springer series Lecture Notes in Geoinformation and Cartography. Please note that the proceeding format is optional, so refer to each workshop for details on the paper format and proceedings.
Note also that the proceedings will be published with Springer only if a sufficient number of papers are accepted. As an alternate plan, the volume will be published on the online open-access platform CEUR-WS.

Note: All workshops have been initially accepted as half-day events. Some, will possibly be extended to full-day if they will prove to be highly attractive to the COSIT community and if their intended contents will prove to be suitable for a full-day schedule. Refer to this page for up-to-date information about workshops duration.

W1 - Cognitive scales of spatial information

At what scale are we thinking when we read a map, get directions from a navigation system, or do spatial analysis using a GIS? This workshop will investigate whether the concepts underlying external spatial representations (such as fields or objects in a GIS) and computations (such as buffer or overlay) can be assigned a cognitive scale and what that would be. By “cognitive scale”, we refer to the size or extent of spatial phenomena as conceptualized by and in relation to human beings and their perceptual-motor mechanisms (following Montello’s 1998 taxonomy and the 1997 discussion by Freundschuh and Egenhofer).

Maps represent environments at a more or less fixed scale and require operations at the figural (more specifically, pictorial) cognitive scale. GIS and related technologies, while clearly not scale-free, offer much more flexible ways of dealing with scale. Are errors like the Economist’s erroneous map of North Korean missile ranges evidence for inadequate ways of dealing with cognitive scale, not just for ignoring the effects of map projections?

Werner Kuhn, Dan Montello, Scott Freundschuh, Crystal Bae, Thomas Hervey, Sara Lafia, Daniel Phillips

W2 - Rethinking wayfinding support systems

It is typically assumed that the only function of modern wayfinding support systems is to provide the minimum of required spatial information at the most relevant time and place. This approach relies on offloading cognitive activity to external aids and has shown to be threatening to our spatial abilities in ways that were uncommon before. As our understanding of these new issues develops, it is now a question of how to make the cognitive experience of following computerised wayfinding support: enriching and not diminishing, incremental and not reiterative, embedded and not distractive, intuitive and not artificial. The aim of this workshop is to consolidate emerging work on those wayfinding systems, which support and prioritise aspects of navigation other than its sole speed and efficiency.

Topics of interest include:

  • Context-driven and task-specific wayfinding support.
  • Alternative metrics for evaluating wayfinding performance and wayfinding support.
  • Pervasive, ubiquitous, and distributed wayfinding support systems.
  • Wayfinding instructions alternative to ‘turn-by-turn’ and ‘actions-at-decision-points’.
  • Visualisation and communication of wayfinding instructions integrated into everyday tasks and contexts.
Jakub Krukar, Angela Schwering, Heinrich Löwen, Marcelo Galvao, Vanessa Joy Anacta

W3 - Speaking of Location: Future Directions in Geospatial Natural Language Research

Research into the description of location using human (natural) language has been approached from linguistics, geospatial, and computer science perspectives. This multidisciplinary workshop will explore current developments in the area with a particular view to considering directions and priorities for future research. It will include both peer-reviewed presentations and group discussions.

The scope of the workshop includes the following:

  • approaches to automated extraction, understanding and/or generation of natural language descriptions of location in textual sources;
  • verbal and written geospatial natural language;
  • natural language related to both static and dynamic location (movement);
  • future priorities in geospatial natural language research;
  • geospatial natural language and ontologies;
  • contextual factors in geospatial natural language;
  • real world applications that use geospatial natural language;
  • geospatial natural language querying;
  • recent/current technological developments and their links to geospatial natural language (e.g. social media, crowdsourcing) and
  • links between language and spatial cognition and behavior.
Kristin Stock, Maria Vasardani, Chris Jones

W4 - Spatial Humanities meets Spatial Information Theory: Place, Space, and Time in Humanities Research

Humanities disciplines such as history, classical studies, literary studies, and philology have in recent years experienced a ‘spatial turn’ similar to that begun in prior decades within the social sciences and archaeology. Many researchers in these fields are now explicitly recording the spatial and temporal attributes of their data and mapping them for visual analysis and argumentation. In many cases they are also performing spatial or spatial-temporal computations, including but not limited to viewshed, network, and cluster analyses, and agent-based and other models and simulations are increasingly common. The software used for this work is the same as that used for the environmental and social sciences: desktop GIS and specialized spatial and natural language processing libraries for the Python and R languages. These new spatial researchers are experiencing the same representational and analytic challenges in studying geographical dynamics that are well known to other disciplines, but they also face distinctive issues related to the nature of historical humanities data. Furthermore, epistemologies associated with new quantitative approaches must be reconciled with their traditional methodological practices.

Spatial information theorists and geographic information scientists have not normally drawn from humanities research cases for their development of theoretical models or the specific software and systems built upon such models. It is our belief the time is ripe for fruitful dialog between these groups.

Ben Adams, Karl Grossner, Olga Chesnokova

W5 - Geo-Knowledge Graphs


Knowledge graphs, i.e., making semantically annotated and interlinked raw data available on the Web, has taken information technologies by storm. Today such knowledge graphs power search engines, intelligent personal assistants, and cyber-infrastructures. For instance, the publicly available part of the Semantic Web-based Linked Data cloud contains more than 150 billion triples distributed over 10000 datasets and connected to another by millions of links. Geographic data play a significant role in this cloud and knowledge graphs in general as places function as central nexuses that connect people, events, and physical objects. Consequently, geo-data sources are among the most central and densely interlinked hubs. Beyond their sheer size, the diversity of these data and their inter-linkage are of major value as they enable a more holistic perspective on complex scientific and social questions that cannot be answered from a single domain’s perspective. Hence, knowledge graphs such as those implemented using the Linked Data paradigm bear potential to address many fundamental challenges of geoinformatics.
In this workshop we will discuss various aspects of geo-knowledge graphs ranging from their extraction and construction from unstructured or semi-structured data, issues of data fusion, conflation, and summarization, geo-ontologies, to query paradigms and user interfaces. By focusing explicitly on geo-knowledge graphs in general, we aim at broadening the focus beyond the Semantic Web technology stack and thus also beyond RDF-based Linked Data.

Krzysztof Janowicz, Tomi Kauppinen, Grant McKenzie, Yingjie Hu, Willem van Hage

W6 - Computing techniques for spatio-temporal data in archaeology and cultural heritage

Archaeological data, and more in general cultural heritage information, are characterized by both spatial and temporal dimensions that are often related to each other and are of particular interest for supporting the interpretation process, that allows to achieve new knowledge about artifacts of the ancient times. For this reason, several attempts have been performed in recent years in order to develop new techniques, tailored to support:

  • spatio-temporal data collection and their effective representation for enhancing interoperability
  • the processing of row data in order to identify artifacts and define their allocation in space and time
  • the reconstruction of ancient structures or their temporal evolution
  • the integrated access and querying of the collected data in different formats.

The workshop aims to bring together researches of the fields of knowledge representation and knowledge discovery to share their research results and find more effective solutions for user needs in archaeology and cultural heritage applications.

Alberto Belussi, Roland Billen, Pierre Hallot, Sara Migliorini