Competence Center for Sustainability Transformation and Responsibility (STaR)

Human-centric Digital Transformation in GIS


A virtual Meetup organized by Cognitive Science Austria, MyData Hub Austria, and our colleagues at the WU Sustainable Computing Lab. . .

Full title: Perceiving Time/Space through Apps: Human-centric Digital Transformation in GIS

When: Wednesday, November 25, 2020

Where: Online event

The perception of geographic reality depends heavily on the tools, such as paper maps or geographic information systems (GIS) used to perceive it. Developing a map involves countless subjective decisions and provides a window into the worldview of its creator. Especially when a system is implemented on a large scale, subjective decisions are typically invisible to users and can result in systematic biases. In other words, a perfect map does not exist; rather, a map or navigation system can be more or less appropriate for certain tasks or contexts. Navigation systems can influence how users perceive environmental distance and influence spatial behavior. Importantly even without any tools human beings are not able to perfectly conceptualize geographic space, and there are numerous well documented distortions in how human beings perceive spatial relationships and distance. Therefore, tools such as GIS are so important, as they are tailored to improve users’ ability to make accurate predictions about their surroundings (i.e. to empower users). (Reference:

In this interdisciplinary meetup, jointly organised by the Sustainable Computing Lab (, Cognitive Science Austria, and MyData Hub Austria, participants discussed GISs and their impact on humans' perception and decision making.

Ben Wagner; TU Delft
Martin Semberger; Austrian Federal Ministry for Digital and Economic Affairs (BMDW)
Robert Braun; Institute for Advanced Studies (IHS)
Stefanie Peer; WU Wien
Soheil Human; Sustainable Computing Lab; WU Wien

More info + Online event links:


[The text of this announcement was contributed by STaR Intellectual Community member Soheil Human]

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