ThinkSpatial: Martin Doerr

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On Thursday, September 17, 2020, The UCSB forum on spatial thinking presents

Identifiable Individuals and Reality
What Do We Describe and Why

 

Dr. Martin Doerr

Foundation for Research and Technology – Hellas (FORTH)

10:00 a.m. Thursday, September 17, 2020 | Zoom link*

Abstract:

Data of empirical-descriptive sciences, such as cultural heritage studies, geography, geology, biodiversity are usually kept in predicate-logic based information systems that refer to things in reality by unique identifiers. This can only work, if the referred features or phenomena, in reality, are distinct and can diachronically be identified in the same way by independent observers without a dialogue between them. In this presentation, we argue that only a smaller part of the features in our environment is sufficiently distinct over a useful time-span to form “identifiable individuals.” Different ontological categories can provide specific criteria about how parts of reality can be subdivided into “identifiable individuals” that turn out to be useful for modeling the behavior of reality as a result of observation, rather than convention, the so-called ontological individuation. We demonstrate (1) that there are always cases in which individuality is undecidable basically within all such categories, (2) that multiple individuals may overlap in substance in characteristic ways, and (3) that no such individual has precise spatiotemporal boundaries due to a variety of causes.

We argue that the kinds of conditions allowing for ontological individuation have widely not been studied, as well as what properties make phenomena not suited for individuation, such as clouds, stages of growth, flowing matter, and so forth. We further propose that the description of delimited situations in such systems, be it after observation or in prediction, needs to relate to identifiable individuals as reference. This epistemic individuation inherits the indeterminacy of the individuals of reference. We further propose that many kinds of scientific description of reality are an approximation that can be better processed via outer bounds. As a practical application, we show how adequate individuation criteria can substantially reduce the ambiguity of spatiotemporal gazetteers.

Bio:

Dr. Martin Doerr is a Research Director at the Information Systems Laboratory and honorary head of the Centre for Cultural Informatics of the Institute of Computer Science, FORTH. He has been leading the development of systems for knowledge representation and terminology, metadata, and content management. He has been leading or participating in a series of national and international projects for cultural information systems. His long-standing interdisciplinary work and collaboration with the International Council of Museums on modeling cultural-historical information have resulted besides others in an ISO Standard, ISO21127:2006, a core ontology for the purpose of schema integration across institutions.

Material:
ThinkSpatial2020-MartinDoerr

The objectives of the ThinkSpatial presentations are to exchange ideas about spatial perspectives in research and teaching, to broaden communication and cooperation across disciplines among faculty and graduate students, and to encourage the sharing of tools and concepts.

* Please contact Karen Doehner, kdoehner@spatial.ucsb.edu or Emmanuel Papadakis epd@ucsb.edu, to review and schedule possible discussion topics or presentations that share your disciplinary interest in spatial thinking. If you are participating from outside the UCSB community, please also ask for access credentials.

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ThinkSpatial: Liz Ackert

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On Tuesday, June 2, 2020, The UCSB forum on spatial thinking presents

Latinx Destinations and Health

 

Liz Ackert

Department of Geography
University of California, Santa Barbara

11:30 a.m. (PST) Tuesday, June 2, 2020

Zoom* : https://ucsb.zoom.us/j/98445704485

Abstract:

The geography of Latinx areas of residence in the U.S. has shifted dramatically in the past three decades, with the Latinx population increasingly living in urban, suburban, and rural areas outside of established immigrant gateways such as California and Texas. This project addresses the consequences of the geographic diversification of Latinx settlement in the U.S. for patterns of health and well-being among the Latinx population. Amidst the changing geography of Latinx settlement, one question of interest is whether emerging areas of Latinx settlement, including “new” and “other” areas of settlement, have more positive or negative contextual resources and intergroup relations related to health and well-being than established gateways. In this ThinkSpatial talk, I present initial exploratory results from an assessment of variation in health care resources and immigration enforcement policies across three types of Latinx counties: (1) Established Destinations; (2) New Destinations, and; (3) Other Destinations. I draw from an array of publicly-available data sources, including the U.S. decennial censuses, the Health Resources and Services Administration (Area Health Resource Files, Health Professional Shortage Areas data, and Medically Underserved Areas data), the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (County Health Rankings and Roadmaps), and the Migration Policy Institute and Immigrant Legal Resource Center (287g program participation information). This work has important implications for the current COVID19 pandemic, as it reveals the types of communities where Latinx populations may be lacking health care resources and where they may face contextual barriers to accessing health care.

Bio:

Liz Ackert is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Geography at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Her research interests include racial/ethnic inequality, immigration, education, health disparities, urban geography, and quantitative methods. Her work examines explanations for why racial/ethnic and immigrant-origin groups are unequally distributed across contexts—including schools, neighborhoods, and immigrant destinations—and evaluates the consequences of this contextual inequality for disparities in outcomes in domains such as education, residential mobility, and health. Ackert is particularly interested in understanding how the attributes of immigrant-receiving contexts, including states, communities, neighborhoods, and schools, influence the health and well-being of Latinx  children and youth.

Material:

Ackert_ThinkSpatial_Talk_Web_June2_2020

* Note, if you are participating from outside the UCSB community, please contact epd@ucsb.edu to get access to the credentials.

The objectives of the ThinkSpatial brown-bag presentations are to exchange ideas about spatial perspectives in research and teaching, to broaden communication and cooperation across disciplines among faculty and graduate students, and to encourage the sharing of tools and concepts.

Please contact Emmanuel Papadakis (epd@ucsb.edu) to review and schedule possible discussion topics or presentations that share your disciplinary interest in spatial thinking.

Follow spatial@ucsb on Twitter | Google+ | Google Calendar

ThinkSpatial: Alina Ristea

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On Tuesday, May 5, 2020, the UCSB forum on spatial thinking presents

Spatial Crime Patterns vs. Safety Perception: Mixed Experiments

 

Alina Ristea

Boston Area Research Initiative (BARI)
School of Public Policy and Urban Affairs
Northeastern University, Boston

11:30 a.m. (PST) Tuesday, May 5, 2020

Zoom* : https://ucsb.zoom.us/j/98445704485

Abstract:
The occurrence of crime depends on a multitude of factors, namely crime attractors or generators, and it shows high spatiotemporal complexity. This presentation is targeting two opposite crime perspectives: (1) objective crime, and (2) subjective crime—perceived crime safety—fear of crime. This work contributes to the research on environmental crime analysis and prediction by pursuing two objectives. The first goal is to uncover spatial relationships between crime occurrences and nearby social media activity, whereas the second goal is to estimate the possible influence of social media posts on crime prediction models. The focus of this part of the presentation is on sporting events, suggesting that spatial crime patterns and people’s social posts are similar on event days and more dissimilar on non-event days. The subjectivity in crime is captured through the lenses of fear of crime. This project is an approach to amalgamate the knowledge about safety features already studied in the urban environment. The primary goal of this work is in using a fusion methodology for integrating a systematic video data acquisition, geographical storytelling, and human physiological measurements to build upon the analysis of the urban environment through a GIS-based platform. The three main objectives of this project are: (1) to test the compatibility of data acquisition through mixed technologies; (2) to extract safety information from the data acquired using mixed methods and to implement it in a GIS-based model; (3) to compare official crime data reported to the police, urban blight indicators, and people’s perceived safety, extracted from the mixed-method approach.

Bio:
Alina Ristea
is a Postdoctoral Research Associate at the Boston Area Research Initiative (BARI), part of the School of Public Policy and Urban Affairs, Northeastern University. She has a Ph.D. in Applied Geoinformatics from the University of Salzburg, Austria (2019), entitled Integration and Evaluation of Social Media in Crime Prediction Models. Her background studies are in the domains of geography, cartography, and Geographic Information Systems (GIS). Ristea’s research interests are highly interdisciplinary, and include interdisciplinary level, focusing among others on combining elements of GIScience, urban informatics, neighborhood effects, spatiotemporal crime analysis, social media mining, predictive analytics, and safety perception. She is a guest editor for the International Journal of Geo-Information (IJGI), by MDPI: Special Issue Urban Crime Mapping and Analysis Using GIS. In addition, she is a member of the International Association of Crime Analysts (IACA) and the American Association of Geographers (AAG). Among others, Ristea won a Marshall Plan Scholarship (February–May 2019), from the Austrian Marshall Plan Foundation, for a research stay at Louisiana State University (LSU).

Material:

ThinkSpatial - Alina Ristea

 

* Note, if you are participating from outside the UCSB community, please contact epd@ucsb.edu to get access to the credentials.

The objectives of the ThinkSpatial brown-bag presentations are to exchange ideas about spatial perspectives in research and teaching, to broaden communication and cooperation across disciplines among faculty and graduate students, and to encourage the sharing of tools and concepts.

Please contact Emmanuel Papadakis (epd@ucsb.edu) to review and schedule possible discussion topics or presentations that share your disciplinary interest in spatial thinking.

Follow spatial@ucsb on Twitter | Google+ | Google Calendar

ThinkSpatial: Konstadinos Goulias

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On Tuesday, April 28, 2020, the UCSB forum on spatial thinking presents

Life Cycle Stages, Daily Contacts, and Activity—Travel Time Allocation for the Benefit of Self and Others

 

Konstadinos G. Goulias

Department of Geography
University of California, Santa Barbara

11:30 a.m. (PST) Tuesday, April 28, 2020

Zoom: https://ucsb.zoom.us/j/96140245863

Abstract:

In this research, we study the correlation between life cycle stages and time allocation for the benefit of self and others. Life cycle stages are defined based on age, employment, family status, and disabilities. Time allocation is classified based on the people with whom each respondent came into contact and for whom he or she performed activities and travel. Based on a two-day time use diary, daily time allocation is classified in social fields that we define as family, friends, schoolmates, co-workers, clubmates, among others. We also include time for sleeping and activities and personal travel. The data analysis creates a taxonomy using cluster analysis of time-of-day activity sequences, complexity of time schedules, and uncovers its correlation with life cycle stages.

Bio:
Since 2004, Konstadinos (Kostas) G. Goulias has been a Professor of Transportation at the Department of Geography at the University of California, Santa Barbara. From 1991 to 2004 he was Professor of Transportation in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering of PennState University, where he also directed research centers. His research is on large-scale transportation systems modeling and simulation, travel behavior dynamics, sustainable transportation, smart cities, economic geography, travel survey methods, geocomputation, and geoinformation. He chairs the International Association for Travel Behaviour Research and he is the co-editor-in-chief of Transportation Letters an international peer-reviewed journal published by Taylor and Francis. He received a Laurea (5 years and a thesis equivalent to M.S.) in Engineering from the University of Calabria (Italy) in 1986, an M.S. in Engineering from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, in 1987, and a Ph.D. in Engineering from University of California Davis, in 1991.

The objectives of the ThinkSpatial presentations are to exchange ideas about spatial perspectives in research and teaching, to broaden communication and cooperation across disciplines among faculty and graduate students, and to encourage the sharing of tools and concepts.

Please contact Emmanuel Papadakis (epd@ucsb.edu) to review and schedule possible discussion topics or presentations that share your disciplinary interest in spatial thinking.

Follow spatial@ucsb on Twitter | Google+ | Google Calendar

ThinkSpatial: George Baryannis

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On Tuesday, April 21, 2020, the UCSB forum on spatial thinking presents

Qualitative Spatial Reasoning Using Answer Set Programming

 

George Baryannis

Department of Computer Science
University of Huddersfield, UK

11:30 a.m. Tuesday, April 21, 2020 | Zoom meeting room:

https://ucsb.zoom.us/j/96140245863

Abstract:

Spatial (and temporal) information is often expressed using qualitative terms such as natural language expressions instead of coordinates; reasoning over such terms has several practical applications, such as naval traffic monitoring, warehouse process optimization, and robot manipulation. Well over 40 qualitative calculi have been proposed so far, including Allen’s interval algebra and the Region Connection Calculus. Reasoning with such calculi has been the focus of extensive research within the wider AI community, with a number of specialized reasoning tools developed. One barrier to the wide adoption of these tools is that only qualitative reasoning is supported natively when real-world problems most often require a combination of qualitative and other forms of reasoning.

I will discuss research to overcome this barrier (conducted at the University of Huddersfield, UK, and the University of Calabria, Italy), focusing on using Answer Set Programming (ASP) as a unified formalism to tackle problems that require qualitative reasoning in addition to non-qualitative reasoning. ASP is a logic-based knowledge representation and reasoning approach that includes a rich but simple modeling language and is capable of handling search problems of high complexity. Research is motivated by two case studies: reasoning about the relations among large numbers of trajectories and determining optimal coverage of telecommunication antennas.

Bio:
George Baryannis is Senior Lecturer (Associate Professor) at the Department of Computer Science of the University of Huddersfield, UK. He received his Dipl.Eng. in Electronic and Computer Engineering from the Technical University of Crete, Greece, and his M.Sc. and Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of Crete, Greece. His teaching and research interests lie within Artificial Intelligence, mainly focusing on knowledge representation and reasoning, machine learning, and interpretability, as well as applications in supply chain risk management, smart homes, and service-oriented computing.

Material:

ThinkSpatial-QSRASP

 

The objectives of the ThinkSpatial presentations are to exchange ideas about spatial perspectives in research and teaching, to broaden communication and cooperation across disciplines among faculty and graduate students, and to encourage the sharing of tools and concepts.

Please contact Emmanuel Papadakis (epd@ucsb.edu) to review and schedule possible discussion topics or presentations that share your disciplinary interest in spatial thinking.

Follow spatial@ucsb on Twitter | Google+ | Google Calendar

ThinkSpatial: Claudio Fogu

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On Tuesday, March 10 June 9, 2020, The UCSB brown-bag forum on spatial thinking presents

The Fishing Net and the Spider Web—

Making Italians Making Southerners

 

Claudio Fogu

Department of French and Italian
University of California, Santa Barbara

12:00 p.m. Tuesday, March 10 June 9, 2020 | 3512 Phelps Hall (map)

 

Abstract:

This talk will discuss the network-theory approach of Grad Malkin’s study of the Archaic Mediterranean and its extension to the history of the modern Mediterranean. Fogu will focus in particular on the role played by the Italian peninsula, coastal communities, and islands in the oscillation among distributed, centralized, and decentralized patterns of connectivity in the Mediterranean.

Bio:

Claudio Fogu moved to Los Angeles in 1983 to study film at UCLA, and later pursued a Ph.D. in History. He taught at Ohio State University and then at USC. Since moving to UCSB in 2005 he has been an Associate Professor of Italian Studies and teaches courses on Italian cultural history and memory, with an emphasis on film and visual culture. He is author of multiple books and is current President of the California Chapters of the American Association of University Professors (CA-AAUP), President of the UC Santa Barbara Faculty Association (UCSB), and Vice-President for External Affairs of the Consortium of UC Faculty Associations (CUCFA).

 

The objectives of the ThinkSpatial brown-bag presentations are to exchange ideas about spatial perspectives in research and teaching, to broaden communication and cooperation across disciplines among faculty and graduate students, and to encourage the sharing of tools and concepts.

Please contact Werner Kuhn (werner@ucsb.edu) to review and schedule possible discussion topics or presentations that share your disciplinary interest in spatial thinking.

Follow spatial@ucsb on Twitter | Google+ | Google Calendar

ThinkSpatial: Ambuj Singh

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On Tuesday, March 3, 2020, The UCSB brown-bag forum on spatial thinking presents

Inferring Network Structure and Flows using Partial Observations

Ambuj Singh

University of California Santa Barbara

12:00 p.m. Tuesday, January 21, 2020 | 3512 Phelps Hall (map)

Network

Abstract:

Predicting network structure and flows on edges is a precondition to effective planning and disaster response in critical infrastructure networks. I will summarize some ideas inspired by network science, physical modeling, and machine learning to determine this information from incomplete observations. Using both physical domain-specific and data-driven approaches, these algorithms address diverse problems including: the reconstruction of network topology and parameters, the estimation of network flows, the optimal selection and scheduling of multiple types of sensors, and the modeling of interdependencies in multilayer networks. The overall goal is to develop a rigorous theory for solving the inverse problem of edge and flow determination from observations of critical infrastructure networks.

Bio:

Ambuj Singh is a Professor of Computer Science at the University of California, Santa Barbara, with part-time appointments in the Biomolecular Science and Engineering Program and the Technology Management Program. He received a B.Tech. degree from the Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur, and a Ph.D. degree from the University of Texas at Austin. His research interests are broadly in the areas of network science, machine learning, social networks, and bioinformatics. He has published 200 technical papers over his career. He has led a number of multidisciplinary projects including UCSB’s Information Network Academic Research Center funded by the Army, Interdisciplinary Graduate Education Research and Training (IGERT) program on Network Science funded by the NSF, and the Multidisciplinary University Research Initiative (MURI) on Network Science of Teams (https://muriteams.cs.ucsb.edu/) funded by the U.S. Army. He has graduated approximately 50 Ph.D., M.S., and postdoctoral students over his career, including 26 Ph.D. students.

The objectives of the ThinkSpatial brown-bag presentations are to exchange ideas about spatial perspectives in research and teaching, to broaden communication and cooperation across disciplines among faculty and graduate students, and to encourage the sharing of tools and concepts.

Please contact Werner Kuhn (kuhn@ucsb.edu) to review and schedule possible discussion topics or presentations that share your disciplinary interest in spatial thinking.

Follow spatial@ucsb on Twitter | Google+ | Google Calendar

Brownbags 2018-2019

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The UCSB Brownbag Forum on Spatial Thinking

Informal noon-time presentations that feature theories, concepts, tools, and applications for spatial thinking across disciplines, including the natural and the social sciences, as well as the humanities. Presentations will take place at the Center for Spatial Studies, Phelps 3512, 12:00–1:00 pm.

Schedule 2018–2019

DateSpeaker/Topic
March 12, 2018Linda Adler-Kassner
University of California: Santa Barbara

Spatial Thinking as a Heuristic: Shaping Learning about Teaching
March 5, 2019Grant McKenzie
McGill University

Scooter-pocalypse: The When, Where, and Why of Scooter-sharing Services
December 11, 2018Wolfgang Maaß
Saarland University

Tapping into the Human Data Space: Predicting the Treatment Success of Obese Children
November 13, 2018Markus Hoffmann
Google

Quantum Computing @Google
October 23, 2018Elisabete Silva
LISA Lab, University of Cambridge
Cambridge, UK

Coming Home to the Land of Dynamic Spatial Analysis and Simulation:
Adaptive Planning Policy and Practice in a Seamless and Fast-Moving Digital World
October 2, 2018Qinghua Ding
Department of Geography
University of California, Santa Barbara

Recent Slow Melt of Arctic Summer Sea Ice caused by Tropical SST Changes

ThinkSpatial: Anna Trugman

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On Tuesday, October 6, 2020, The UCSB forum on spatial thinking presents

The Geography of Forest Hydraulic Trait Compositions: Observed Patterns, underlying Mechanisms, and Future Implications

 

Anna Trugman

Department of Geography

University of California Santa Barbara

11:30 a.m. Tuesday, October 6, 2020 | Zoom link*

Abstract:

Tree hydraulic traits determine plant water use and tree vulnerability to drought stress, thereby affecting forest productivity and the movement of water between the land surface and the atmosphere. Here, I leverage an extensive trait database and a long-term continental forest plot network to map changes in community trait distributions and quantify “trait velocities” (the rate of change in community-weighted traits) for different regions and different forest types across the U.S. from 2000 to the present. I find evidence for shifts towards communities with more drought-tolerant traits driven by tree mortality. I then review my ongoing work looking at the extent to which community trait compositional changes may buffer forest productivity and water fluxes in the near term from the effects of climate change.

Bio:

Anna Trugman  is an Assistant Professor in the Geography Department. Her lab studies how changes in climate and water availability affect ecosystem diversity, productivity, and resilience across large spatial scales. Her research approach integrates field measurements with numerical ecosystem models to gain new insight into the biological processes affecting climate-vegetation interactions. Trugman received her Ph.D. in Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences from Princeton University in 2017 and her B.S. in Geological and Environmental Science from Stanford University in 2011. From 2017–2019 Trugman was a USDA NIFA Postdoctoral Fellow in the School of Biological Sciences at the University of Utah.

The objectives of the ThinkSpatial brown-bag presentations are to exchange ideas about spatial perspectives in research and teaching, to broaden communication and cooperation across disciplines among faculty and graduate students, and to encourage the sharing of tools and concepts.

* Please contact Karen Doehner, kdoehner@spatial.ucsb.edu or Emmanuel Papadakis epd@ucsb.edu, to review and schedule possible discussion topics or presentations that share your disciplinary interest in spatial thinking. If you are participating from outside the UCSB community, please also ask for access credentials.

Follow spatial@ucsb on Twitter | Google+ | Google Calendar

ThinkSpatial: Emmanuel Papadakis

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On Tuesday, January 21, 2020, The UCSB brown-bag forum on spatial thinking presents

Bridging Space and Place in Geographic Information Systems

Emmanuel Papadakis

University of California Santa Barbara

12:00 p.m. Tuesday, January 21, 2020 | 3512 Phelps Hall (map)

Abstract:

People refer, describe and interact with places; geographic information systems (GIS), however, are designed to visualize, process and analyze spaces. Both place and space are used to describe the geographic world, but each provides a different perspective. Place is an informal view framed by symbols, concepts and experience, whereas space is confined to the rigid digital world that adheres to mathematical formulas, data models and processes. Since digital systems have become a vital part of our lives, it is crucial to enable them to visualize, analyze and process the world as humans do. In this presentation, I will tackle a long-lasting question on whether spatial representation standards infused with semantics can create an adequate reflection of the geographical world as it is projected in the human mind. Using the concept of functions, I show how important aspects of place can be formalized and be integrated into GIS. Through examples on place-based search, I depict how a system can combine the processing and visualizing capabilities of machines with the sophisticated concept of place, contributing to the overall idea of a place-based GIS. Finally, I give some insights on further research that aims to incorporate emotions and similar concepts in the aforementioned formalization. Also, I propose the idea of an Algebra of Patterns, which focuses on innovative ways of conducting place synthesis, search, and discovery.

Bio:

Emmanuel Papadakis is a postdoctoral researcher at the Center for Spatial Studies in the Department of Geography at the University of California, Santa Barbara. He received his Ph.D. in Geoinformatics as a member of the Doctoral College GIScience within the Inter-faculty Department of Geoinformatics at the University of Salzburg in October 2019. He holds an M.Sc. and a B.Sc. degree in Computer Science from the University of Crete, Greece. His research focuses on modeling, knowledge representation and reasoning of vague concepts such as fuzzy spatiotemporal entities, spatial functions, places, environmental stress and others aiming to introduce formalizations that enable their digitization and effective integration in digital systems.

The objectives of the ThinkSpatial brown-bag presentations are to exchange ideas about spatial perspectives in research and teaching, to broaden communication and cooperation across disciplines among faculty and graduate students, and to encourage the sharing of tools and concepts.

Please contact Werner Kuhn (kuhn@ucsb.edu) to review and schedule possible discussion topics or presentations that share your disciplinary interest in spatial thinking.

Follow spatial@ucsb on Twitter | Google+ | Google Calendar