Joint Maynooth Geography and NCG Seminar

Thursday, September 24, 2015 - 16:00

Joint Maynooth Geography and NCG Seminar:

24 September 2015, 4-5:30pm, Rocque Lab, Rhetoric House, South Campus

Professor Chris Brunsdon
National Centre for Geocomputational, Maynooth University
“Geocomputation: A Series of Consummations Devoutly to be Wished”
This talk will consider some underlying principles when working with geocomputational problems.  These relate to the general practice of geocomputation, and a set of objectives to guide these - although specific examples will be considered.  In particular I will focus on:
·      ‘Honesty' in map representation;
·      Exploration and modeling;
·      Caution and big data; and
·      Making geocomputation reproducible.
The talk begins by considering the idea that one should ‘draw crisp lines with caution’ –many mapping outputs are drawn with precise lines that imply a degree of certainty not necessarily reflecting the belief of the map-maker or the inherent uncertainty in the analysis technique.  In this talk some alternatives will be presented, or example giving maps of imprecise or fuzzy information a ‘hand drawn’ appearance.  Following on from this, a broader consideration of openness in geocomputation will be considered. This will cover ideas of how models may be interpreted and their relationship with exploratory analysis, and some consideration of arguments made relating to 'big data’.  Finally, openness in terms of data processing will be viewed from the standpoint of reproducibility – considering approaches to making code and data used in publications available to be run by third parties – and how this might avoid a few ‘interesting’ situations such as Climategate or the recent uncovering of errors in published work cited to justify austerity-based economic policies.

Chris Brunsdon is currently Director of the National Centre for Geocomputation and Professor of Geocomputation at Maynooth University, having moved from Liverpool University’s department of Geography and Planning. He has interests in geographical data analysis and visualisation, crime pattern analysis, health geography, and population geography.

All Geography Seminars are free and open to the general public. For more details about the Geography Department Seminar series please email: or