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To benefit society by promoting the development and realization of Digital Earth


The 2nd ISDE International Lectures Successfully Held

On February 9th, 2023, the 2nd ISDE International Lectures was held online with fruitful insights into the theme of “The Digital Earth(s) of Citizens”. As a sequel inspired by the 1st Lectures, the 2nd Lectures further expanded the research scope into the citizens’ participation in Digital Earth through monitoring the environment, forming complex social ecosystem, and supporting the law enforcement. Three renowned experts in this field were invited to deliver lectures.


Prof. Maria Antonia Brovelli from the Politecnico di Milano (PoliMI), Italy, gave a lecture on “Tools for Monitoring the Environment: the SIMILE Project”. She made a lead-in by introducing the practical problem of lake monitoring. To solve this, she shared several strategies such as the coordination of existing monitoring systems with methods like HF Sensors and satellite images, which was further exemplified by the case study of The Simile Project, an ecosystem incorporating sorts of OGC Services and open source software and part of the Interreg Programme. Its mobile APP version in different languages is available for ordinary citizens to upload lake monitoring data as well, which aroused participants’ great interest. She expected that with the help of machine learning or AI, for example the adoption of Chat BOT, the evaluation and correction of citizen-collected information must be more efficient with lots of benefits to come.


Dr. Patricia Solís, Executive Director of the Knowledge Exchange for Resilience at Arizona State University, US and the co-founder and director of YouthMappers, made a video lecture on “Perspectives on the Complex Social Ecosystem of Public Participation in Digital Earth”. She first introduced the notion of Citizen Science by sharing the chapter of “Citizen Science in Support of Digital Earth” that she coauthored with other authors in the Manual of Digital Earth. Then, she clued the audience in about the status quo of the public participation in scientific research and Digital Earth at large through the case study of OpenStreetMap and YouthMappers as a community of communities. She consequently empathized the role of students and community members in the mapping and spatial data production and believed that Citizen Science generates a public good in many ways enabling an invested community as integral part of Digital Earth.


Dr. Anna Berti Suman, a Marie Skłodowska-Curie fellow at the European Commission’s Joint Research Centre (JRC), Italy, delivered a lecture on “Citizen Science and Civic Monitoring Supporting Law Enforcement: A New Frontier?”. She briefed the legal meaning of Citizen Science and Citizen Sensing and then introduced the project Sensing for Justice (SensJus) hosted by European Commission, Joint Research Centre (JRC). It is an important source of evidence in environmental litigation and helps to mediate the environment conflict. Her lecture elaborated how and why citizen-gathered data are utilized to law enforcement and conflict mediation, as well as the evolution of the civic monitoring right. Through her narration, the history that ordinary people fought against informational monopolies and for legal sensing right unfolds. In the end, she advocated the emotional story-telling to elicit research findings from citizens, especially the less educated people.


The 2nd ISDE International Lectures was moderated by Dr. Marisa Ponti, Associate Professor in the Division of Learning, Communication and IT at University of Gothenburg, Sweden. Over 2,300 participants around the world attended the 2nd Lectures through Zoom, ISDE Bilibili platform and other academic streaming platforms.


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The ISDE International Lectures are organized by the International Society for Digital Earth (ISDE) and supported by the International Research Center of Big Data for Sustainable Development Goals (CBAS). It is a series of online events which feature invited lectures by well-known international experts in the field of Digital Earth. The event will invite speakers to give lectures every two months. The purpose of the events is to bring international scholars in the relevant research fields of Digital Earth together to exchange academic perspectives, share research results, and disseminate the most cutting-edge and authoritative concept of Digital Earth.