Ideas and Aims
Rationale, Objectives, Target groups
- 1.1 Rationale and background
plication of geoinformation science (which includes data bases and GIS) in study and management of present landscape is under intensive development. The information explosion brings large amounts of geodata to digital processing. The traditional forms of data collection are being carried out separately as a thematic mapping while the data application is based on data integration. GIS technologies allow user to provide various kinds of mechanical data integration based on the technical and geometrical geodata parameters. The logical data integration, presenting information that is mutually related in the reality, absents. The result of the logical data integration is limited set of multi-parameter information layers in the database where the thematic information about the nature, human activities, development limits and terrain are linked in logical ("normal") combinations. Further geodata processing based on such database is much more correct and efficient than the processing of large sets of overlaid analytical (mono-parameter) data layers. Present high education institutions are not able to follow this development; understanding of necessity of logical data integration is only very slowly introduced into regular studies curricula. Currently there is no study programme at any high education institution in the Czech Republic and elsewhere in Europe that would focus on this practical aspect of geodata application in GIS. This explains the current lack of specialists in this field not only in Europe. The unfavourable situation in undergraduate and graduate education in the field of geoinformatics can be gradually changed by updating the current curricula and accreditation of new study programmes. The problem of logical geodata integration is broadly discussed but not reflected by any national or international GIS study programme. The purpose of the proposed IP is to tackle the described situation. The Summer school - Full integration of geodata in GIS - will introduce the latest trends of geodata processing to students who do not have an opportunity to obtain this knowledge through regular curricula. It will enable the participants to find positions in any type of organization dealing with application of spatial data in landscape management (government administration, management of protected areas and forests, administration of water courses and communication networks, land cadastre etc.).
- 1.2 Aims and objectives
The objective of the proposed IP is to provide interested students of undergraduate, graduate and doctoral study programmes with information, knowledge, methodology and skills necessary for application of geoinformation technologies in logical geodata integration, for quality of data improvement and for further use in GIS supported decision-making processes in the landscape management. The technologies and methods that will be presented do not receive sufficient attention and time in the traditional study programmes. The Summer school participants with be able to use the obtained information and skills in their future work in the database management and geodata processing.
- 1.3 Contribution to European Policy Statement
The overall development of the Mendel and other participating universities is oriented mainly to achieving high level of university education and research, corresponding to European dimension, and to broadening of high quality professional consultation services. University contributes to general social development, especially by enhancing the stability and sustainability of rural areas influenced by agricultural and forestry management practices. Growing co-operation with foreign universities, based on existing international relations, is essential for fulfilling this mission.
- 1.4 Innovative aspects
The content of the Summer school will bring innovative views and techniques into the geodata integration, namely logical data integration, until now not regarded in the geodata pre-processing and GIS applications. Newly developed approach can reduce errors in all kinds of geodata processing, both in the GIS based modelling using commercially or publicly developed modelling procedures (SW packages) and in the area documentation.
- 1.5 Pedagogical and didactical approaches
The course will be based on two main forms of tuition: lectures and practical exercises in lecture rooms (first module) and field work/institution visits (second module). From the total of 88 hours (11 working days), 64 hours will be dedicated to theoretical and practical work in classes, 16 hours to field work/institution visits, 8 hours to final evaluation of participating students. 8 hours of lectures will provide theoretical background in the field of geodata parameters – digitizing, formats, rectification. Apart from that, principles of standard geodata conversion methods based on format, scale, resolution, map projection, etc. will be presented. 10 hours will be dedicated to the understanding of principles of logical geodata integration methods based on natural data content, resolution of original analytic data layers, technical map quality etc. and to application of logical geodata integration process in working with GIS (overlay, geoprocessing, analysis, digital landscape cartography). 11 hours will be dedicated to application of fully integrated geodata for various purposes in landscape management. Related methods of application using GIT will be presented, e.g. modelling, multidimensional and multimedia presentations. The field work module (16 hours) will be carried out in the form of visits to institutions using progressive geodata gathering/processing methods in GIS for solution and modelling of various territorial problems. The knowledge obtained during the theoretical module will be this way confronted with reality. 35 hours of practical exercises in computer laboratories will concentrate on work with geodata using GIS software in order to enable the participants to apply theoretical knowledge on standard and logical geodata integration obtained in lectures. During the practical exercises the students will also work on the case studies in groups of 2-3 persons.
- 1.6 Direct beneficiaries
The participants of the IP will have the opportunity to learn about the progressive forms of geodata preprocessing and application in GIS for various purposes in territory management. Furthermore, students will experience team work in an international group of students and get to know new environment, landscape and people. The establishment and strengthening of these contacts may be reflected in further cooperation in future. The participating students will be selected by the partner schools as the best qualified persons that would be able successfully pass the planned Summer school, not regarding their level of study.
- 2.1 Outputs
For information, communication and promotion purposes, an official web page of the Summer school in national language of the coordinating institution (Czech) and in English will be launched. Summer school participants will achieve qualitatively new knowledge about the "forgotten" aspect of geodata management - about the logical data integration. Students will acquire ability to put together geodata layers not only from the formal viewpoints (format, scale, projection, resolution), but also from the viewpoint of information content. This way, the Summer school participant will be able to integrate geodata layers concerning individual natural features, land use/land cover factors, human requirements into small set of mutually balanced multi-parameter layers excluding "wrong" geodata combinations and polygon overlaps. Logically integrated multi-parameter data layers can use various GIS processing and modelling procedures effectively and reduce the ratio of wrong processing outputs. This kind of knowledge can represent a new contribution to geodata understanding, processing and application in territory management. Contents of lectures and practical exercises will be published in English in the electronic format. Multimedia tuition material will be used during the lectures and will be accessible through internet. Each participant will receive a CD with the Summer school material. Besides, for the field work and excursions, a printed guide will be prepared and handed out to participants. The evaluation of participants will be based on their work on case studies from GIS in groups of 2-3 persons. At the end of the Summer school, case studies will be presented in the form of PowerPoint presentation and defended in front of all participants. Each student will receive a certificate of successful participation in the IP.
- 2.2 Academic recognition
The ECTS will be applied. The total number of 5 credits will be awarded to the participants after presentation and defence of the case studies.
- 2.3 Additional benefits
All tuition and study materials prepared for the Summer school will be further used at the Faculty of Forestry and Wood Technology of the coordinating institution in the newly accredited master-level study programme „Integrated Use of Landscape“ and in courses taught in English “Introduction to GIS” and “Digital Cartography”. Participating institutions will use the tuition and study materials for innovation and update of the curricula of relevant subjects.
Planning of activities
- 3.1 Overall working methods
The IP will be organised as an active workshop (Summer school), divided into two modules. The first one will consist of a combination of lectures and practical exercises in the campus of the coordinating university. The second module will extend and supplement the theoretical background from the first module in the form of visits to institutions dealing with problems studied during the Summer school. All teaching materials (lectures, exercise guidebooks, guide for field work) will be prepared in an electronic format (multimedia) and presented on the web site of the IP. The Summer school is closely linked with activities within the European Master in GI Science.
- 3.2 Work plan (all partners will participate)
- Winter 2005/2006 - Preparation of teaching materials, launch of web site
- March 2006 - Preparatory meeting in Brno (2 days)
- April 2006 - Recruitment and selection of participants at each partner university
- May/June 2006 - IP-Summer school in Brno
- August 2006 - Evaluation of IP, dissemination of results
- 3.3 Subjects to be taught
Subjects to be taught are listed below (X/Y – X-lecture, Y-exercise):
- GIS data formats - (2 hours, Salzburg)
- Georectification - (2/3 hours, Zvolen, 1/1 hours, Szekesfehervar)
- Data conversion - (2/3 hours, Szekesfehervar, 1/1 Thessaloniki)
- Data overlay and geoprocessing in GIS - (1/1 hours, Brno, 0/1 Thessaloniki)
- Logical data integration into digital landscape model - (3/4 hours, Brno)
- Geospatial analysis in GIS - (2/2 hours, Tartu, 1/2 Thessaloniki)
- Modelling in GIS - (2/3 hours, Tartu, 2/2 hours Salzburg)
- Cartographic outputs and digital cartography - (2/3 hours, Krakow, 1/1 Girona)
- Multidimensional presentations - (3/3 hours, Girona, 1/1 Thessaloniki)
- Multimedia presentations of GIS outputs - (2/1 hours, Krakow, 2/1 hours, Zvolen)
- 3.4 Outline of the programme
May 21 – June 3, 2006
Preliminary IP time schedule:
Arrival to Brno, accommodation, free time
Module1 22 (Mon)
Welcome session, organisational issues, lectures
Lectures, laboratory exercises
Module2 26 (Fri)
Visit to institutions
Cultural activities, free time
Module2(cont.) 29 (Mon)
Visit to institutions
Lectures, laboratory exercises
Lectures, laboratory exercises
Workshop – presentation of results of case studies, closing session
Departure of participants
Evaluation and dissemination
- 4.1 Monitoring and evaluation
During the Summer school, the quality of tuition will be evaluated continuously. The coordinator of the project will monitor lectures and practical exercises, assessing their level in all aspects (content, form, methods etc.). The feedback from participants will play the key role in the evaluation process. Apart from continuous attention to their responses and comments, at the end of the first week the participants will be asked to evaluate anonymously in the form of a questionnaire the content and form of the tuition and at the end of the second week also the level of lecturers and overall level and benefit of the Summer school. The information obtained in this way will be used for the assessment of quality and success of the Summer school.
- 4.2 Continuation of activitiesFollow up activities will be based on the introduction of prepared teaching materials into the curricula running in the universities participating in the Summer school. Another Summer school, linked to results of the proposed one, should be realised after three-year period, what is the time necessary for the introduction and evaluation of full geodata integration into standard home teaching materials.
- 4.3 Assessment of quality and dissemination of outputs
The quality and level of tuition materials will be evaluated during the preparatory phase of the project on the basis of comments from all participating institutions. At this stage, the materials will be forwarded to participating institutions through internet and discussed in correspondence and at the preparatory meeting. An independent audit will be carried out by a specialist from the field of database and GIS outside the coordinating institution. Another way of outputs evaluation is represented by the assessment of work of individual participants (results of their practical work) in the end of the Summer school. The official web page of the Summer school will serve as the main information source for dissemination of results of the IP. It will be launched already in the preparatory phase of the project and will be updated as necessary. It will contain information about the programme of the Summer school and links to participating institutions including addresses of the contact persons. The electronic versions of the tuition materials will be available on request by e-mail. Information about the Summer school will be sent to all partner schools of MUAF Brno in the Socrates programme. Local and subject related media will be informed, as well as web based media.
Partnership composition and contribution
- 5.1 Expertise and experience
Mendel University of Agriculture and Forestry Brno (MUAF) as the coordinating institution has long-year experience with organization of the IPs and similar international educational events. Teachers of the coordinating university have long experience with courses in English related to the topic of the IP. The university takes part in various forms of international cooperation under Socrates as well as other EU programmes (TEMPUS, CEEPUS, Leonardo da Vinci). International Relations Office of MUAF Brno is fully experienced in organizing international cooperation. University of Salzburg (Austria) is an important partner of the coordinating institution on the international level. The long-year tradition of international projects includes coordination of the Curriculum Development programme European Masters in GI Science, a project prepared for the CEEPUS programme, bilateral cooperation in the framework of Action, etc. Didactic and theoretic contributions are expected from this partner. University of Girona (Spain) is a leading institution in GIS related studies in Spain for many years. This partner has very good experience in GIS map updating as well as with Summer schools organising with participation of teachers from many countries in the past. The technical related experience will extremely contribute the Summer school programme. The university has educated in GIS also many student of Latin America. University of West Hungary (Hungary) is experienced organiser of remote sensing Summer schools and important institution in a domain of the GIT research and its application in various kinds of forestry, landscape management and planning. It has a special expertise in Multi-Country PHARE Projects and FISH (Land / Geographical Data Services on Internet). In ongoing the Socrates programme, the University of West Hungary will play the role of deliverer of the applied GIS knowledge. Jagiellonian University Krakow (Poland) is a leading university in its country. It has long-year experience in GIS based geographic knowledge application and modelling. The Krakow partners dispose unique experience in hydrological modelling in GIS, urban development and environmental protection. University of Tartu (Estonia) is a highly experienced institution in cartographic GIS applications and in digital landscape processes and development modelling. Various kinds of GIT applications in theoretical and practical activities of landscape ecology will be contributing to the Summer school. Technical University Zvolen (Slovak Republic) has a long-time tradition in GIT forestry applications in general, as well as in technical aspects of geodata integration, especially for mountain forest management. The Summer school related experience is based on the computer cartography, geodata pre-processing and forestry planning. Aristotle University of Thessaloniki (Greece) is a leading national university involved in geosciences and GIS applications in research and territorial management, namely in agriculture and environmental assessment. Strong ties with commercial enterprises and governmental institutions make background for understanding of requirements of labour market.
- 5.2 Tasks of partner institutions
All partner institutions have been involved in the planning phase of the IP and the preparation of the IP will continue in close cooperation of all partners. We expect participation of one teacher and approximately 5 students from each partner university. Every partner will contribute to the preparation of the tuition materials by submitting the contents of the lecture/lectures presented by its teacher/teachers related to the experience mentioned above. The coordinators from individual partner universities will also be involved in the process of evaluation of the lectures in order to assure their coherence and quality. Partners have already their know-how and experience in necessary areas of knowledge to be applied in the Summer school.
- 5.3 Non-university partners
The programme of the second module of the IP will include excursions to various institutions of the Czech Republic. They will be prepared in cooperation with the organizations dealing with GIS applications in forest and landscape management, namely: Lesy České republiky, s.p. (Forests of the Czech Republic, state enterprise), GEODIS BRNO Ltd. (leading European level GIS company, Brno), Lesprojekt (Forestry Planning Institute, Brandýs nad Labem), and others.
Contribution to transversal policies and to annual horizontal Socrates priorities
- 6.1 Impact of the project on target groups and participation in the project itself
There will be no differences in the approach to women and men during all parts of the programme; all participants will be equal. The IP will be open to all interested students of all levels of study from participating initiations; the only requirement is that the participants should have some basic knowledge of GIS and remote sensing and to speak English on at least intermediate level. There will be no disability discrimination involved. The IP will fight against racism and xenophobia through its international nature; it will contribute to cross-cultural contacts among young people from different parts of Europe. Participants will work in teams of 2-3 people, each team consisting of participants from different countries. They will learn about different situation in individual countries in the field of geodata and GIS. The language used for communication in the preparatory phase and during the IP will be English; all the tuition materials will be in English. The IP will enable the participating students to improve their level of English not only through the work, but also through social contacts with other participants.
- 6.2 Contribution to Socrates priorities
The project will contribute to the strengthening of European Research Area and Bologna Process; it will also reflect European approach to study and research concerning geodata and territorial problems typical for the most European countries - e.g. separated databases and traditional analytical approach to data application. As a geoinformation project, it will serve the improvement of the informatics abilities of the population and computer intelligence. The Summer school will be a very good opportunity to develop and promote links between the EU member states (Austria, Spain, Hungary, Poland, Slovakia, Czech Republic, Estonia, Greece). Participation in the programme will enable students and teachers of all countries to understand each other and to develop further contacts. The topic of the IP - application of logical geodata integration and GIS methods in specific tasks of territory management and modelling - responds to the current need of specialists in this field at European level. At present, there is no study programme at any higher education institution in the Czech Republic and elsewhere in Europe, specialized on full technical and logical geodata integration using geoinformation technologies. The participants will be able to use the obtained knowledge and skills in solving practical problems of geodata integration in territory management and will contribute to sustainable development and efficient, economic and environmentally-sound management of landscape under European conditions. The programme of the Summer school will include not only theoretical tuition, but also practical work and visits. Like that, the participants will have the possibility to consider the relations between the theory and practice and will obtain skills applicable in real life. The participants will come from 8 countries, each with a different language. The IP will be a challenge for them and an opportunity to improve their technical skills and gain better confidence in English. The GIT will be used throughout the whole programme. The tuition materials will be worked out using multimedia technologies. The students will be required to prepare presentations in PowerPoint, which will contribute to improvement of their practical skills in the GIT area. Proposed Summer school is intended to provide participants with fully innovative approach to digital geodata processing, until now not incorporated in higher education curricula around Europe. Experience gained during the Summer school will enhance computer skills of participants and colleagues and fellows at the home universities. Web published tuition materials will be used much more widely than for the Summer school and its participating institutions.