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Special Issue "Remote Sensing of Urban Form"

A special issue of Remote Sensing (ISSN 2072-4292). This special issue belongs to the section "Urban Remote Sensing".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: 30 April 2020.

Special Issue Editor

Guest Editor
Dr. Luis Inostroza

Ruhr-Universitat Bochum, Bochum, Germany
Website | E-Mail
Interests: urban ecology; urban metabolism; urban planning; ecosystem services; socio-ecological systems; remote sensing

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

Remote sensing is widely used to analyze urban form. In an increasingly urbanized world, a better understanding of urban form can greatly support the development and evaluation of regional and national policies and the understanding of the environmental impact of urban development, thus facilitating the preparation and implementation of urban and regional planning.

Urban form is key to advancing towards sustainable urban transformations. A better understanding of urban form can contribute to solving pressing global problems of climate adaptation, ecological deterioration, and social equity that are present in current patterns of local and global urban development. To advance, we need conceptually sounded, detailed, and accurate representations of the spatial complexity, drivers, and patterns of urban form emerging from different spatiotemporal conditions.

In this Special Issue, we will collect a set of contributions on remote sensing approaches to analyze urban form by means of remotely sensed data and image processing, emphasizing quantitative and empirical measures and focusing on one or more of the following aspects:

  • Approaches coupled with wider spectral ranges;
  • Effective multitemporal approaches to understand the variations of urban form and its transitions over time. Change-detection analyses conducted in only two discrete time periods are restricting the ability to monitor and analyze urban form over extended time periods, describing patterns only partially and mostly concealing the processes driving them. We encourage the use of multitemporal remote sensing techniques to explore the temporal dimension of urban form with sufficient observations to monitor intermediate structural changes and their fluctuations;
  • Implications of spectral, radiometric, and temporal resolution to describe and compare urban forms. These contributions might inspire the development of sensors better suited to capture the spatial and spectral complexity and the heterogeneity of urban forms;
  • Remote sensing approaches of the third dimension (3D) of urban form, state-of-the-art methods for 3D modeling of  urban form, novel indicators/landscape metrics of 3D urban form;
  • Remote sensing approaches going beyond the binary classification of urban land uses describing urban form as a continuous, rather than a categorical, phenomenon, multi-label and proportion-cover classification systems, adaptation of pre-established databases, consequences of dichotomic classification systems for urban form analysis;
  • Remote sensing approaches that effectively tackle the interplay between human-constructed materials (technomass), soil–plant continuum, and water. This in the context where the soil–plant continuum and water are often overlooked as material components of urban form. Biomass–technomass modelling, approaches addressing multi-layer classifications.

Dr. Luis Inostroza
Guest Editor

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. Remote Sensing is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly 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 1800 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.


  • Urban form
  • Multitemporal assessment
  • Soil–plant continuum
  • Continuous urbanization
  • 3D urban form
  • Radiometric indexes
  • Spatial heterogeneity

Published Papers

This special issue is now open for submission.
Remote Sens. EISSN 2072-4292 Published by MDPI AG, Basel, Switzerland RSS E-Mail Table of Contents Alert
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