All paper sessions, keynotes, workshops, and breaks below will take place in the Reinoldus-Raum (1st floor of the U Tower building; address: Leonie-Reygers-Terrasse, 44137 Dortmund).

Tuesday, 19 September 2023

10am – 10.15am

Welcome note

10.15am – 11am

Poster blitz

11am – 11.30am

Coffee break

11.30am – 1pm


Capturing Elements of the Nature Futures Framework Through In Situ Place Descriptions: An Empirical Study In Urban Blue Locations
Sven Teurlincx, Netherlands Institute of Ecology, NL
Rosan van Halsema, Netherlands Institute of Ecology, NL; Natuur & Milieu, NL
Alexandra Deffner, University of Twente, NL
Louise Willemen, University of Twente, NL
Ekaterina Egorova, University of Twente, NL

Human-nature interaction is in constant flux, and capturing the present perceptions and imaginaries of urban nature could facilitate the development of scenarios that ensure positive futures for both nature and humans. This paper explores the feasibility of inferring and operationalizing the three key values of the Nature Futures Framework – Nature for Society, Nature as Culture, and Nature for Nature – through the language in place descriptions and place transformation suggestions, collected in situ in 57 urban blue spaces as part of a pilot citizen science project in the Netherlands. We suggest that cross-pollination between research working towards capturing place facets in natural discourse and the Nature Futures Framework has the potential to provide effective means for a better understanding and visualization of individual and collective nature-related values hold within communities in particular places, leading to transformations of urban nature in a way that is beneficial to both humans and nature

Spatio-textual Regions: Extracting Sense of Place from Spatial Narratives
Erik Steiner, University of Oregon, US
Zephyr Frank, Stanford University, US
Ian Gregory, Lancaster University, UK
David J. Bodenhammer, Indiana University, US
Ignatius Ezeani, Lancaster University, UK

Sense of place is a critical concept underlying the meanings attached to locations and locales in geography and related fields. This concept is often ambiguous and complex when presented in narrative text and challenging to represent and analyze at scale. Mapping a sense of place in this regard requires more than finding geographical coordinates or drawing polygons around toponyms. Our paper develops the concept of a spatio-textual region (STR), a method for identifying platial clusters embedded in spatial narrative texts and explores the potential for mapping the results. We demonstrate the method on an 1827 account by Nathaniel Carter describing his travels through the Lake District in England. We envision this method could be employed at scale for generating novel representations of the sense of place embedded in tourist literature, personal journeys (e.g., Holocaust survivors), and other narratives.

Emerging Platial Narratives and Themes From a Leisure Walking Study
James Williams, University of Nottingham, UK
James Pinchin, University of Nottingham, UK
Adrian Hazzard, University of Nottingham, UK
Gary Priestnall, University of Nottingham, UK
Stefano Cavazzi, Ordnance Survey, UK
Andrea Ballatore, King’s College London, UK

This article presents the preliminary results of a think-aloud leisure walking study, identifying the key themes and platial narratives. A think-aloud study was conducted to explore what and how leisure walkers engaged with while walking. Our emerging results are presented in the context of an approach to extracting and understanding the platial experience during the study. The early findings suggest that the types of places engaged with while walking and the characteristics of these places are varied, while navigation and wayfinding have an impact on the selected route and the changes that occur during the walk. Our future work will now focus on further analyzing these results and using them to improve the recommendation of leisure walking routes.

1pm – 2pm


2pm – 6pm

Excursion I – “The Ruhr as a transforming place: from coal and heavy industry to a post-industrial landscape” at Zeche Zollern

6pm – 7pm

Free time

7pm – 10pm

Ice breaker
(at Bergmann Kiosk:

Wednesday, 20 September 2023

9am – 10am

10am – 10.30am

Coffee break

10.30am – 12noon


The Image of the City by Temporarily Displaced Children: How Place-Based Citizen Science Contributes to Place Discovery
Ekaterina Egorova, University of Twente, NL
Crystal J. Bae, University of Chicago, US

This study focuses on spatial knowledge acquisition among Ukrainian children, temporarily displaced as a result of a war and newly arrived in the Netherlands. As part of a place-based citizen science project, we conducted two sketch mapping sessions, one before and one after the project, to explore youth’s conceptualization of the environment following a three-month residency in the new city, and to assess the impact of a two-week citizen science project on place discovery. Methodologically, we investigate the semiotics of sketch maps supported by individual interviews, and characterize types of knowledge and experiences reflected in the data. The presented work suggests that the sketch map representations capture the physical, emotional, and social contexts of youth’s interaction with the new environment, while place-based citizen science provides an opportunity for direct and indirect spatial knowledge acquisition and enrichment of the city image with new meanings, contributing to place discovery.

Place Representation as a Prerequisite to Place Communication
Franz-Benjamin Mocnik, University of Salzburg, AT

Places can hardly be formally represented in such way that their qualities can be experienced from the representation itself. Places are therefore currently largely inaccessible to formal methods, which is one of the reasons why Platial Information Theories and Platial Information Systems do not yet exist. This paper discusses the possibilities that a shift to a communication perspective offers in terms of a better understanding of platial information. In particular, it argues for the need to create a corpus of place representations to study them empirically. Such a corpus can be expected to facilitate a deeper understanding of the mechanisms that are effective when representing places as well as how place representations can be transformed into other place representations.

Exploring the Duality of Space and Place through Formal Geo-Concepts
Eric J. Top, Utrecht University, NL
Daniel Romm, McGill University, CA
Grant McKenzie, McGill University, CA

Places are initially perceived through the senses, and the fidelity between these senses and their mental representations is imperfect. At the same time, it is impossible to know what platial memories a place name may evoke in the recipient. In contrast, spaces can be reasoned about, but encompass endless continua that cannot be fully comprehended. In this paper, we explore the thesis that the interplay between spaces and place representations parallels the duality between extent, the things a class ranges over, and intent, the range of descriptive qualities of a class. We discuss how a duality may manifest between spaces and representations of senses of places. In doing so, we use definitions from the mathematical basis of formal concept analysis and we introduce the notion of a geo-concept, which is a matching of a space and a place representation. We conclude with a short outlook on implications and directions for future work.

12noon – 1pm


1pm – 2.30pm


Scenario Planning and Participatory GIS for Place Research on Rural Transformation
Kevin Kaminski, University of Applied Sciences Mainz, DE
Markus Schaffert, University of Applied Sciences Mainz, DE
Patrick Torakai, firu mbH, DE

Several transformations are taking place in rural areas, emphasizing the significance of comprehending people’s perceptions of place. This paper outlines a methodical strategy that integrates participatory GIS and scenario planning workshops to investigate transformations and potential impacts in rural areas. The methodology comprises an open-ended, inductive knowledge process utilized in two work- shops. Workshop 1 involves the development and aggregation of driving factors into potential scenarios, whereas workshop 2 includes the mapping and weighting of scenarios based on the probability of occurrence and strength of impact on the rural area. Although the outcomes are rooted in a relational comprehension of human-environmental factors, a theoretical framework of location-based information is required for further research to entirely understand the mechanisms supporting the emergence of transformative rural areas.

Public Engagement Tactics in the COVID-19 Pandemic-Related Street Experiments
Jianting Zhao, The University of Hong Kong, CN
Guibo Sun, The University of Hong Kong, CN

Platial information can be reflected through public engagement. Cities worldwide temporarily reallocated street space to serve public space and active mobility during the Covid-19 Pandemic, known as pop-up bike lanes, shared streets, and outdoor dining, some of which are running today. Despite its popularity, few articles have discussed how the government consulted with citizens to convert short-term actions into long-term transformations. Through a phenomenological study, we investigated governments’ tactics to engage with the public through 24 initiatives. Using Mergel’s (2013) push-pull-mingling tactics framework, we analyzed the governments’ public engagement practices in these interventions. Data sources include social media activities, webpages, and official documents, supplemented with interviews. Despite lacking public consultation during the pandemic, government agencies engaged extensively with the public in subsequent development phases. Street closure interventions tend to incorporate more engagements than curbside or sidewalk reallocations. The platial information from public engagement contributed to design changes and experiment continuations.

Exploring Place: A Pedagogical Journey in Spatial Planning Using the Place Standard Tool
Víctor Cobs-Muñoz, TU Dortmund University, DE
Liudmila Slivinskaya, TU Dortmund University, DE

This paper presents the pedagogical outcomes of integrating the Place Standard Tool into the learning experience of first-year spatial planning students to approach the concept of place and its connection to their discipline. The study, conducted within a case study in Rozenburg-Rotterdam, the Netherlands, focuses on examining the relationship between spatial dynamics and residents’ interactions with their surroundings. Through field trips and a street survey, the students utilized collective mapping and the Place Standard Tool to assess people’s perceptions of Rozenburg as a place, examining its challenges, pressures, and opportunities. The paper critically reflects on the methodological and pedagogical aspects of this integration, emphasizing the significance of the platial perspective in spatial planning education. Drawing from a hands-on pedagogical experience, the paper outlines the advantages of adopting the platial approach in the learning process, while also highlighting the challenges of intro- ducing complex and theoretically loaded concepts such as place.

2.30pm – 3pm

Coffee break

3pm – 5pm

Workshop I

Unveiling Place Perspectives with the Place Standard Tool
Liudmila Slivinskaya, TU Dortmund University, DE
Víctor Cobs-Muñoz, TU Dortmund University, DE

5pm – 6pm

Free time

6pm – 10pm

Symposium dinner
(at restaurant “Schönes Leben”:

Thursday, 21 September 2023

10am – 12noon

Excursion II – “Urban transitions in Dortmund’s North End”

12noon – 1pm


1pm – 2.30pm


Co-creation of Place-Based Content for Field Trips and Public Trails by Geo-Content Management
Andreas Wagner, University of Bamberg, DE
Dominik Kremer, University of Erlangen–Nuremberg, DE

While learning about places in classrooms takes large profit of digital geomedia, digital assisted learning on site is still bound to fragmented solutions, as innovative Extended Reality immersions often demand too much resources to be run on average smartphones. In addition, efforts staging digital aided learning experiences on site are still too cumbersome for regular teaching. In an explorative answer to this challenge, we introduce the FAU Geoexplorer, aiming at focused presentation of geomedia on site supported by an easy to follow content creation process.

The Influence of Socio-Demographic Factors on Walkability Perception – Results from a Large-Scale Survey
Tessio Novack, Research Institute for Regional and Urban Development (ILS), DE; University of Münster, DE
James Tripp, University of Warwick, UK
Carlos Cámara-Menoyo, University of Warwick, UK

Urban sense of community and sense of place are dependent on streetscapes that foster the activity of walking. In this context, a key question is in which ways socio-demographic factors affect how individuals subjectively perceive the walkability of streets. This study addresses this question based on an online survey in which 1440 individuals of different gender, ages, sexual orientations, and immigration backgrounds provided more than 86,000 subjective assessments of streetview images from 495 streets in the city of London (England). Statistically significant differences in the average and variance of assessments for most socio-demographic groups comparisons were found. This evidence suggests that theories relating the streets’ visually perceived features to their subjective walkability perception need to account for the influence of the individuals’ socio-demographic factors.

Here is Not There: Measuring Entailment-Based Trajectory Similarity for Location-Privacy Protection and Beyond
Zilong Liu, University of Vienna, AT
Krzysztof Janowicz, University of Vienna, AT; University of California, Santa Barbara, US
Kitty Currier, University of California, Santa Barbara, US
Meilin Shi, University of Vienna, AT
Jinmeng Rao, University of Wisconsin–Madison, US
Song Gao, University of Wisconsin–Madison, US
Ling Cai, IBM Research, US
Anita Graser, Austrian Institute of Technology, AT

While the paths humans take play out in social as well as physical space, measures to describe and compare their trajectories are carried out in abstract, typically Euclidean, space. When these measures are applied to trajectories of actual individuals in an application area, alterations that are inconsequential in abstract space may suddenly become problematic once overlaid with geographic reality. In this work, we present a different view on trajectory similarity by introducing a measure that utilizes logical entailment. This is an inferential perspective that considers facts as triple statements deduced from the social and environmental context in which the travel takes place, and their practical implications. We suggest a formalization of entailment-based trajectory similarity, measured as the overlapping proportion of facts, which are spatial relation statements in our case study. With the proposed measure, we evaluate LSTM-TrajGAN, a privacy-preserving trajectory-generation model. The entailment-based model evaluation reveals potential consequences of disregarding the rich structure of geographic space (e.g., miscalculated insurance risk due to regional shifts in our toy example). Our work highlights the advantage of applying logical entailment to trajectory-similarity reasoning for location-privacy protection and beyond.

2.30pm – 3pm

Coffee break

3pm – 5pm

Workshop II

Automatization of Spatial Analyses of Urban Areas
Jose Mauricio Velazco-Londono, TU Dortmund University, DE

5pm – 5.15pm

Closing of the event