We are now just finalising the programme for GISRUK 2019. Our preliminary schedule is now available at the link below.

Our key headlines
  • Early Career workshops (see details): We will have a series of workshops starting from Tuesday lunchtime and concluding at Wednesday lunchtime. We have refreshed these a little from those held at previous conferences so keep an eye out for more details.
  • Three keynote speakers (see details): See below for our confirmed speakers.
  • Panel session (see details): This will discuss the topic 'How will the opening up of geospatial data help the GIS community'.
  • Early career parallel session: There will be a dedicated parallel session for early career researchers to present ideas for current or future research.
The programme starts at 12:30 on Tuesday lunchtime for the workshops, and then Wednesday/Thursday start at 9am. On Friday the plan is to start at 9:30. The academic programme will finish at 17:30 at the latest each day, apart from Friday when we plan to finish by 13:00 to allow you all to travel home. We will hopefully confirm the programme soon so check back here or keep an eye out on social media (@GISRUK) for announcements.

The final programme will be made available online with all accepted abstracts, and there is no plan to print a full programme for attendees. Within the venue a small number of printed schedules will be made available on a day-by-day basis for those who require one. This year we will also be offering 3 prizes to (a) the best poster, (b) the best full presentation by a early career researcher and (c) the best full presentation (non early career researcher). Voting for these will be done online, details of which will be released soon.

Information for accepted authors

Please register by March 15th to confirm your intention to present your accepted work.

Oral presentations:
  • All screens are widescreen format (16:9)
  • Bring your slides/presentations to the session room on a USB 10mins before your session starts. If wanting to use your own laptop, please make sure it can connect via HDMI and let us know prior to the event.
  • Full presentations: These should be 15minutes in length, with 5minutes for questions following
  • Short presentations: These should be 5minutes in length, with 10minutes for discussion following
Poster presentations:
  • Please bring your poster already printed (we can advise on places to get posters printed in Newcastle if required).
  • Posters should be A1 in size, either landscape or portrait. We wil provide velcro to attach posters to the boards.
  • Poster boards will be setup for you to put your poster up from Thursday(25th) morning.

Keynote speakers

Wednesday 24th April - Professor Renee Sieber

Renée Sieber is a professor of geography and environment (jointly appointed) at McGill University, in Montréal, Canada. She is also affiliated with McGill’s School of Computer Science, McGill’s Digital Humanities Working Group and the Global Environmental and Climate Change Centre of Quebec. Sieber works at the intersection of social theory and computer code. She is best known for her research on Public Participation GIS/ Participatory GIS. She authored the definitive review of PPGIS, which has been cited over 1000 times. She was awarded the CAG’s GIS Study Group’s Lifetime Achievement Award for her PPGIS research and her role in supporting GIS research in Canada. She sits on the executive committee of Spatial Knowledge and Information Canada, which will be holding its 7th conference in February in Banff. Sieber just concluded a SSHRC Partnership, called Geothink, which investigated how citizens and cities interact via the geospatial web 2.0, crowdsourcing and open data. She is currently researching the role of artificial intelligence in civic governance.

Thursday 25th April - Dr Gobe Hobona

Dr. Gobe Hobona is the Director of Knowledge Management for the Open Geospatial Consortium (OGC). The OGC is an international industry consortium of over 521 companies, government agencies and universities participating in a consensus process to develop publicly available interface standards for geospatial technologies. Dr Hobona is responsible for the OGC’s knowledge management strategy to create an environment that enables the OGC membership to identify, create, represent, share, distribute, and adopt insights and experiences across programmes. His other roles within the OGC include being Chair of the OGC Naming Authority and the OGC Architecture Domain Working Group. Prior to joining OGC staff, he was the Consultancy Team Leader and Head of Applied Research at Envitia. During his time at Envitia, he was the technical lead of a multi-year geospatial research project sponsored by a major UK government ministry. He has also previously held postdoctoral research posts at Newcastle University and the University of Nottingham. He is a professional member of the Royal Institution of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) and the Association of Computing Machinery (ACM).

Friday 26th April - Thierry Gregorius

Thierry Gregorius is a GIS and Geomatics professional with over 20 years' experience in Energy, Natural Resources and Environment, having worked for companies like Royal Dutch Shell and Landmark Information Group, where he occupied global and senior leadership positions. For the past 6 years he has worked as a management consultant with Exprodat Consulting (a Getech group company), where he is currently pursuing his passion for helping people transform how they work - with GIS or otherwise. Thierry holds a PhD in Satellite Geodesy from Newcastle University and is a Fellow of the Royal Geographical Society.

Panel session

Theme: How will the opening-up of geospatial data help the GIS community?

Chair: Professor Mark Birkin, University of Leeds and Alan Turing Institute - more info...

Confirmed panelists:
  • Professor Alex Singleton, University of Liverpool - more info...
  • Anne Robertson, EDINA - more info...
  • Damien McCloud, ARUP - more info...
  • Simon Navin, Ordnance Survey - Head of Innovation programmes
  • Hugh Phillips, Geospatial Commission - Data and Standards Lead
  • Alexis Hannah Smith, IMGeospatial - Founder and CEO (, Geospatial World Startup of the year 2019 and Member of the Executive Board World Geospatial Industry Council.

Early Career Workshops

We have 4 workshops which are aimed at early career researchers all of which are free to attend. Registration for these has now closed.
Workshop A
  • Title: Seeing our cities: visualising urban digital twins
  • Being run by: Professor Nick Holliman, Newcastle University
  • Date/time: Tuesday 23rd, 1pm
  • Outline: This workshop will be in two halves. In the first we will demonstrate the capabilities of the a standarad visualisation tool, Microsoft's PowerBI, for presenting and interacting with urban data. In the second half we will look to the future and discuss research using cloud supercomputing to investigate where visualisation tools might go in the next twenty years.
Workshop B
  • Title: Accessing open data and using API's
  • Being run by: Newcastle Urban Observatory (web site)
  • Date/time: Tuesday 23rd, 3pm
  • Requirements: Please bring a laptop along.
  • Outline: This session will introduce open data, and the increasing availability of a vast array of open data from a wide range of themes. Led the Newcastle Urban Observatory, you will also get the chance to explore what API's are, and how to use them.
Workshop C
  • Title: Spatial data with R
  • Being run by: Nick Bearman and Robin Lovelace
  • Date/time: Wednesday 24th, 9am
  • Requirements: Please bring a laptop along with R (3.5 or newer installed) and RStudio (click for help). You may also need to install some spatial libraries - click for guidance
  • Outline: This workshop will show you how to use R to manage and process spatial data. We will show you how to make choropleth maps and perform basic spatial analysis in R, as well as how to leverage the power of programming to create multiple maps quickly, one of the major benefits of using a scripting language such as R.

    We will also introduce the newly released book Geocomputation with R, an open source resource for anyone wanting to learn R for geographic research, and provide pointers towards more advanced methods and visualisation techniques.
  • Links:
Workshop D
  • Title: GIS in industry
  • Being run by: Laura Hanson
  • Date/time: Wednesday 24th
  • Outline: This session will give attendees a chance to explore how GIS is employed and used within industry. You will have the chance to speak to GIS professionals about their careers thus far and there day-to-day work and how GIS plays a role in this.

Thanks to our sponsors: