Special Issue "Open Geospatial Science and Applications"

A special issue of ISPRS International Journal of Geo-Information (ISSN 2220-9964).

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (30 January 2015)

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Dr. Suchith Anand

Chair of ICA Commission on Open Source Geospatial Technologies, Nottingham Geospatial Institute, University of Nottingham, UK
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Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Thierry Badard

Chairs, ICA Commission on Open source Geospatial Technologies, Centre for Research in Geomatics, Department of Geomatic Sciences, Laval University, Québec, QC, G1K 7P4, Canada
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Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Franz-Josef Behr

Department of Geomatics, Computer Science and Mathematics, University of Applied Sciences Stuttgart, Schellingstraße 24, D-70174 Stuttgart, Germany
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Guest Editor
Prof. Serena Coetzee

Geography Building 3-5, Centre for Geoinformation Science, Department Geography, Geoinformatics and Meteorology, University of Pretoria, Private Bag X20, Hatfield, 0028, South Africa
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Phone: +27824644294
Fax: +27 12 420 6385
Interests: spatial data infrastructures; addressing; geographic information standards; geoprocessing; open source for geospatial software
Guest Editor
Dr. Luciene Delzari

Universidade Federal do Paraná, Setor de Ciências da Terra - Departamento de Geomática, Caixa Postal 19.001, 81.531-970 Curitiba, Paraná, Brazil
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Guest Editor
Dr. Barend Kobben

Department of GIP, International Institute for Geo-Information Science and Earth Observation (ITC), PO Box 6, 7500 AA Enschede, The Netherlands
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Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The last decade has seen a rapid growth in open source geospatial software and open data developments. Building upon the broader progress in open science, the synergies in the developments in open source geospatial software, open data, open standards, open hardware and open access to research publications have been key in accelerating the advancement for open geospatial science and applications. A combination of factors are driving this momentum, including the contributions made by hundreds of developers and the leading role played by the Open Source Geospatial Foundation (OSGeo), aiming primarily to support and promote the collaborative development of open source geospatial technologies and data. For the geospatial community this has offered exciting opportunities for expanding both research and education for the future. By combining the potential of free and open GI software, open data, open standards, open access to research publications, open hardware, etc. will enable the creation of a sustainable innovation ecosystem for advancing the discipline and accelerating new discoveries to help solve global cross disciplinary societal challenges from climate change mitigation to sustainable cities.

We invite original research contributions on all aspects of open source geospatial software and its applications, and particularly encourage submissions focusing on the following themes for this Special Issue.

  • The use of open source geospatial software and data, in and for scientific research
  • Academic endeavors to conceptualize, create, assess open source geospatial software and data, and teach such usage.
  • Use of Open Data and Big Data
  • Data quality, software quality
  • Open source implementations
  • Open SDI
  • Community building
  • Assessment of costs and benefits of open source applications and open source business models
  • Architectures and frameworks for open source software and data
  • Teaching geospatial sciences with open source solutions and open data
  • Open Source GIS application use cases: government, participatory GIS, location based services, health, energy, water, climate change, etc.
  • Human computer interfaces and usability in and around Open GI systems

Important Dates

Abstracts Due: 15/08/2014
Approved Abstracts: 10/10/2014 (put as planned papers online)
Manuscripts Due: 30/01/2015
Decision to Authors: 05/04/2015
Final Papers Due: 15/05/2015

There will not be any article processing fees for full paper articles received before 28th Feb 2015 and will be published free if they are accepted.

We welcome all contributions including case studies, work in progress and demos.

Dr. Suchith Anand
Prof. Thierry Badard
Prof. Franz-Josef Behr
Prof. Serena Coetzee
Dr. Luciene Delzari
Dr. Barend Kobben
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. ISPRS International Journal of Geo-Information is an international peer-reviewed open access monthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 900 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.


Keywords

  • State of the art developments in Open Source GIS and open data
  • Open Source GIS in education
  • Interoperability and standards: OGC, ISO/TC 211
  • Web processing services
  • Open architectures
  • Open content
  • Open science
  • Case studies of open source implementations
  • Open Source GIS internationalization and localization
  • Using Open Source GIS with proprietary software
  • Transition to Open Source GIS
  • Use of Open Data and Big Data
  • Open SDI
  • Open Source GIS business models
  • Open Source GIS implementation and deployment case studies
  • Sensor web enablement
  • Usability in Open GI systems

Published Papers (9 papers)

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Research

Open AccessArticle Communicating Thematic Data Quality with Web Map Services
ISPRS Int. J. Geo-Inf. 2015, 4(4), 1965-1981; doi:10.3390/ijgi4041965
Received: 10 February 2015 / Revised: 28 August 2015 / Accepted: 11 September 2015 / Published: 6 October 2015
Cited by 1 | PDF Full-text (590 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Geospatial information of many kinds, from topographic maps to scientific data, is increasingly being made available through web mapping services. These allow georeferenced map images to be served from data stores and displayed in websites and geographic information systems, where they can be
[...] Read more.
Geospatial information of many kinds, from topographic maps to scientific data, is increasingly being made available through web mapping services. These allow georeferenced map images to be served from data stores and displayed in websites and geographic information systems, where they can be integrated with other geographic information. The Open Geospatial Consortium’s Web Map Service (WMS) standard has been widely adopted in diverse communities for sharing data in this way. However, current services typically provide little or no information about the quality or accuracy of the data they serve. In this paper we will describe the design and implementation of a new “quality-enabled” profile of WMS, which we call “WMS-Q”. This describes how information about data quality can be transmitted to the user through WMS. Such information can exist at many levels, from entire datasets to individual measurements, and includes the many different ways in which data uncertainty can be expressed. We also describe proposed extensions to the Symbology Encoding specification, which include provision for visualizing uncertainty in raster data in a number of different ways, including contours, shading and bivariate colour maps. We shall also describe new open-source implementations of the new specifications, which include both clients and servers. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Open Geospatial Science and Applications)
Open AccessArticle A Volunteered Geographic Information Framework to Enable Bottom-Up Disaster Management Platforms
ISPRS Int. J. Geo-Inf. 2015, 4(3), 1389-1422; doi:10.3390/ijgi4031389
Received: 11 February 2015 / Revised: 21 May 2015 / Accepted: 31 July 2015 / Published: 13 August 2015
Cited by 4 | PDF Full-text (1309 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Recent disasters, such as the 2010 Haiti earthquake, have drawn attention to the potential role of citizens as active information producers. By using location-aware devices such as smartphones to collect geographic information in the form of geo-tagged text, photos, or videos, and sharing
[...] Read more.
Recent disasters, such as the 2010 Haiti earthquake, have drawn attention to the potential role of citizens as active information producers. By using location-aware devices such as smartphones to collect geographic information in the form of geo-tagged text, photos, or videos, and sharing this information through online social media, such as Twitter, citizens create Volunteered Geographic Information (VGI). To effectively use this information for disaster management, we developed a VGI framework for the discovery of VGI. This framework consists of four components: (i) a VGI brokering module to provide a standard service interface to retrieve VGI from multiple resources based on spatial, temporal, and semantic parameters; (ii) a VGI quality control component, which employs semantic filtering and cross-referencing techniques to evaluate VGI; (iii) a VGI publisher module, which uses a service-based delivery mechanism to disseminate VGI, and (iv) a VGI discovery component to locate, browse, and query metadata about available VGI datasets. In a case study we employed a FOSS (Free and Open Source Software) strategy, open standards/specifications, and free/open data to show the utility of the framework. We demonstrate that the framework can facilitate data discovery for disaster management. The addition of quality metrics and a single aggregated source of relevant crisis VGI will allow users to make informed policy choices that could save lives, meet basic humanitarian needs earlier, and perhaps limit environmental and economic damage. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Open Geospatial Science and Applications)
Open AccessArticle Q-SOS—A Sensor Observation Service for Accessing Quality Descriptions of Environmental Data
ISPRS Int. J. Geo-Inf. 2015, 4(3), 1346-1365; doi:10.3390/ijgi4031346
Received: 25 February 2015 / Revised: 9 July 2015 / Accepted: 30 July 2015 / Published: 10 August 2015
Cited by 6 | PDF Full-text (10599 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The worldwide Sensor Web comprises observation data from diverse sources. Each data provider may process and assess datasets differently before making them available online. This information is often invisible to end users. Therefore, publishing observation data with quality descriptions is vital as it
[...] Read more.
The worldwide Sensor Web comprises observation data from diverse sources. Each data provider may process and assess datasets differently before making them available online. This information is often invisible to end users. Therefore, publishing observation data with quality descriptions is vital as it helps users to assess the suitability of data for their applications. It is also important to capture contextual information concerning data quality such as provenance to trace back incorrect data to its origins. In the Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC)’s Sensor Web Enablement (SWE) framework, there is no sufficiently and practically applicable approach how these aspects can be systematically represented and made accessible. This paper presents Q-SOS—an extension of the OGC’s Sensor Observation Service (SOS) that supports retrieval of observation data together with quality descriptions. These descriptions are represented in an observation data model covering various aspects of data quality assessment. The service and the data model have been developed based on open standards and open source tools, and are productively being used to share observation data from the TERENO observatory infrastructure. We discuss the advantages of deploying the presented solutions from data provider and consumer viewpoints. Enhancements applied to the related open-source developments are also introduced. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Open Geospatial Science and Applications)
Open AccessArticle Economic Assessment of the Use Value of Geospatial Information
ISPRS Int. J. Geo-Inf. 2015, 4(3), 1142-1165; doi:10.3390/ijgi4031142
Received: 30 January 2015 / Revised: 18 June 2015 / Accepted: 24 June 2015 / Published: 9 July 2015
Cited by 3 | PDF Full-text (1569 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Geospatial data inform decision makers. An economic model that involves application of spatial and temporal scientific, technical, and economic data in decision making is described. The value of information (VOI) contained in geospatial data is the difference between the net benefits (in present
[...] Read more.
Geospatial data inform decision makers. An economic model that involves application of spatial and temporal scientific, technical, and economic data in decision making is described. The value of information (VOI) contained in geospatial data is the difference between the net benefits (in present value terms) of a decision with and without the information. A range of technologies is used to collect and distribute geospatial data. These technical activities are linked to examples that show how the data can be applied in decision making, which is a cultural activity. The economic model for assessing the VOI in geospatial data for decision making is applied to three examples: (1) a retrospective model about environmental regulation of agrochemicals; (2) a prospective model about the impact and mitigation of earthquakes in urban areas; and (3) a prospective model about developing private–public geospatial information for an ecosystem services market. Each example demonstrates the potential value of geospatial information in a decision with uncertain information. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Open Geospatial Science and Applications)
Open AccessArticle Conception and Implementation of an OGC-Compliant Sensor Observation Service for a Standardized Access to Raster Data
ISPRS Int. J. Geo-Inf. 2015, 4(3), 1076-1096; doi:10.3390/ijgi4031076
Received: 30 January 2015 / Revised: 14 May 2015 / Accepted: 24 June 2015 / Published: 6 July 2015
Cited by 3 | PDF Full-text (895 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The target of the Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) is interoperability of geographic information, which means creating opportunities to access geodata in a consistent, standardized way. In the domain of sensor data, the target will be picked up within the OGC Sensor Web Enablement
[...] Read more.
The target of the Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC) is interoperability of geographic information, which means creating opportunities to access geodata in a consistent, standardized way. In the domain of sensor data, the target will be picked up within the OGC Sensor Web Enablement Initiative and especially reached through the Sensor Observation Service (SOS) standard. This one defines a service for a standardized access to time series data and is usually used for in situ sensors (like discharge gauges and climate stations). Although the standard considers raster data, no implementation of the standard for raster data exists presently. In this paper an OGC-compliant Sensor Observation Service for a standardized access to raster data is described. A data model was developed that enables effective storage of the raster data with the corresponding metadata in a database, reading this data in an efficient way, and encoding it with result formats that the SOS-standard provides. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Open Geospatial Science and Applications)
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Open AccessArticle An Open Source WebGIS Application for Civic Education on Peace and Conflict
ISPRS Int. J. Geo-Inf. 2015, 4(2), 1013-1032; doi:10.3390/ijgi4021013
Received: 10 February 2015 / Accepted: 4 June 2015 / Published: 15 June 2015
PDF Full-text (3417 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
By developing an interactive open source-based WebGIS information portal on war and peace for the online services of the Federal Agency for Civic Education, the Bonn International Center for Conversion (BICC) translates scientific knowledge into easily understandable and subsumable up-to-date information for the
[...] Read more.
By developing an interactive open source-based WebGIS information portal on war and peace for the online services of the Federal Agency for Civic Education, the Bonn International Center for Conversion (BICC) translates scientific knowledge into easily understandable and subsumable up-to-date information for the general public and young scholars. By aggregating globally scattered data and information on various peace- and conflict-related topics as well as presenting their spatial visualization through interactive maps, BICC contributes to a better understanding of peace and conflict processes. Users are invited to explore the relationship of various variables and their decisive roles in such processes. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Open Geospatial Science and Applications)
Figures

Open AccessArticle Integrating Free and Open Source Solutions into Geospatial Science Education
ISPRS Int. J. Geo-Inf. 2015, 4(2), 942-956; doi:10.3390/ijgi4020942
Received: 12 February 2015 / Accepted: 21 May 2015 / Published: 1 June 2015
Cited by 3 | PDF Full-text (3201 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
While free and open source software becomes increasingly important in geospatial research and industry, open science perspectives are generally less reflected in universities’ educational programs. We present an example of how free and open source software can be incorporated into geospatial education to
[...] Read more.
While free and open source software becomes increasingly important in geospatial research and industry, open science perspectives are generally less reflected in universities’ educational programs. We present an example of how free and open source software can be incorporated into geospatial education to promote open and reproducible science. Since 2008 graduate students at North Carolina State University have the opportunity to take a course on geospatial modeling and analysis that is taught with both proprietary and free and open source software. In this course, students perform geospatial tasks simultaneously in the proprietary package ArcGIS and the free and open source package GRASS GIS. By ensuring that students learn to distinguish between geospatial concepts and software specifics, students become more flexible and stronger spatial thinkers when choosing solutions for their independent work in the future. We also discuss ways to continually update and improve our publicly available teaching materials for reuse by teachers, self-learners and other members of the GIS community. Only when free and open source software is fully integrated into geospatial education, we will be able to encourage a culture of openness and, thus, enable greater reproducibility in research and development applications. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Open Geospatial Science and Applications)
Figures

Open AccessArticle Open Geospatial Analytics with PySAL
ISPRS Int. J. Geo-Inf. 2015, 4(2), 815-836; doi:10.3390/ijgi4020815
Received: 6 February 2015 / Revised: 1 April 2015 / Accepted: 20 April 2015 / Published: 13 May 2015
Cited by 3 | PDF Full-text (5543 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
This article reviews the range of delivery platforms that have been developed for the PySAL open source Python library for spatial analysis. This includes traditional desktop software (with a graphical user interface, command line or embedded in a computational notebook), open spatial analytics
[...] Read more.
This article reviews the range of delivery platforms that have been developed for the PySAL open source Python library for spatial analysis. This includes traditional desktop software (with a graphical user interface, command line or embedded in a computational notebook), open spatial analytics middleware, and web, cloud and distributed open geospatial analytics for decision support. A common thread throughout the discussion is the emphasis on openness, interoperability, and provenance management in a scientific workflow. The code base of the PySAL library provides the common computing framework underlying all delivery mechanisms. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Open Geospatial Science and Applications)
Open AccessArticle Open Geospatial Education
ISPRS Int. J. Geo-Inf. 2015, 4(2), 697-710; doi:10.3390/ijgi4020697
Received: 5 February 2015 / Revised: 3 April 2015 / Accepted: 20 April 2015 / Published: 24 April 2015
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (1091 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The advances in open data, free and open source software solutions and open access to research publications have influenced the emergence of open educational resources (OER) initiatives. These initiatives permit access to openly licensed learning resources including courses, webinars, training materials and textbooks.
[...] Read more.
The advances in open data, free and open source software solutions and open access to research publications have influenced the emergence of open educational resources (OER) initiatives. These initiatives permit access to openly licensed learning resources including courses, webinars, training materials and textbooks. Thereby, an increasing number of users has the opportunity to broaden their knowledge and gain new skills. The goal of this paper is to evaluate open education initiatives in the geospatial domain and its synergies with open spatial data and software movements. The paper is focusing on the Massive Open Online Course (MOOCs) movement. The advantages and challenges of open geospatial education will be thoroughly discussed. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Open Geospatial Science and Applications)

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