Workshops & Trainings

(Workshop) EGEA MapperLab – Bring your experience on a map, design your solution as an app
Christian Sailer (Business Manager „Education, Environment, Aid and Development” Esri Schweiz AG)

The world we are living in is changing as well as the methods we have to document and analyse it. Nowadays, with the existing technologies (e.g. smartphones), it is possible to collect data while we are “on the move”. But which possibilities do exist and which opportunities do they really offer? How can we deal with it and make the best use out of these new opportunities? This workshop will enable you to discover some of these new opportunities and to apply them on a very concrete case.

The workshop will be divided in three main parts. On the first day, you will be introduced to GIS and some of its features with the help of an exemplary “DocuApp” (very similar to the one you will develop by yourselves). After this introduction you will have the task to develop an application (meant to be used on smartphones) designed for documenting the congress excursions which will take place on the next day. It will be up to you to choose which kind of information you want the application to focus on by defining a research question. Then, this application, YOUR application, will be installed by all participants owning a smartphone and will collect data (like the excursion route, the different elevations, several points of interest, etc. – this will be determined by you) during each of the four excursions. During the rest of the time dedicated to workshops, you will analyse the data collected during all excursions and try to find the best way to visually present them on the final workshop presentation session.

EGEA MapperLab


The GIS Projects of the MapperLab


(Workshop) The Big Bang Theory – deep impact in the Alps
Ekrem Canli and Barbara Schwendtner (EGEA Wien)

In a world, where natural hazards are more and more conceived by the society, measures for hazard and risk planning are of increased need. In this context, the term of Global Change, which implies not only climate change but also the adverse effects of population growth, expansion of human settlements, land use changes, construction of infrastructure etc., is frequently used. Particularly in mountainous regions, where the area of permanent settlement is limited to the narrow valleys, all these effects are even more likely to increase the vulnerability to hazards from different sources (landslides, rock falls, debris flows, floods). Therefore, our main goal of our workshop is to raise awareness of the concept of risk and all its components. Keeping in mind that risk is a function of hazard, vulnerability and the elements at risk/assets, we want to identify and designate all factors that contribute to an increasing vulnerability on the one hand, on the other hand we want to figure out how hazard is defined, identified and mitigated.

In that context our workshops is mainly split in two parts:

  • Part 1 will contain the theoretical basis of the risk concept. We are going to find solutions and ways on how to identify natural hazards, how to decrease vulnerability and how to mitigate the adverse effects of natural hazards.
  • Part 2 will deal with a practical task in the field of hazard identification. We are going to use the ubiquitous program ArcGIS and a rock fall modelling tool, called CONEFALL. The program CONEFALL is designed to estimate roughly the potential rock fall prone area and can be easily implemented in ArcGIS to make rock fall susceptibility maps that are used in practice. Such susceptibility maps are not only used by geotechnicians to build protection structures, but also for spatial planers to identify dangerous areas that are part of regional hazard zonation plans. Before carrying out the actual hazard modelling, we are identifying and mapping potential rock fall initiation points in a high resolution Digital Elevation Model (DEM) and with aerial images. In addition, we are going on a small field trip close to the congress location, where we are going to discuss and analyze the hazard probabilities in mountainous areas.

You are going to know the differences between risk and hazard, the concepts of vulnerability and how to measure vulnerability.

Moreover, you will learn how to generate basic derivative maps from DEMs (slope maps, hillshade maps, etc.), identify and map geomorphic structures based on a high resolution DEM & orthophoto, perform a basic rock fall modelling based on an easy to handle empirical freeware model (CONEFALL) and how to generate susceptibility and ready to use maps in ArcGIS.

May the power of GIS be with you!

The Big Bang Theory

(Workshop) Achtung! Natural Hazards?! – a case study of Thun and the Bernese Oberland
Rachel Abela (EGEA Malta) and Claudi Rock (EGEA Tübingen)

The theme of the congress “moving spaces, changing places” can be interpreted as signifying both societal change and natural change. Rather than separating societal and natural processes and changes, through this workshop we would like to present the bigger picture. This is the perfect opportunity to combine both human and physical geography. Taking a systems-thinking approach the integration of both elements is possible, thus bringing a whole new dimension to the role of a geographer.

Our aim is to present the elements of hazard and risk management such as research, monitoring and response to phenomena as an integrated system. We will combine our expertise in human and physical geography in this workshop, so the topic of hazard and risk will be approached from both a natural and a societal angle. This will be done by discussing current methods and theories which we are familiar with on a global scale, whilst also encouraging workshop participants to bring their own experiences. During this workshop we hope to tackle the basics of understanding natural hazardous phenomena, calculating risk and vulnerability, understanding societal and political perspectives regarding the subject, and finally discussing effective management techniques and systems which are or can be implemented to reduce risk and vulnerability.Moving further from the theoretical basis, the workshop will then encourage participants to analyse the local case study critically in order to understand the challenges that come from applying theory to practice.

Achtung! Natural Hazards?

(Workshop) Why do we move the way we do? – Mobility influenced by space – Mobility changing space
Lara Zemite (EGEA Kiel)

The different activities that people participate in their lives usually are not in one place. Living, working, shopping and recreation are spatially divided and people have to move to participate in them all making mobility very important in everyone’s life. It is the “glue” that keeps everything together. Mobility and transportation always have depended on accessibility; which in turn is influenced by many very different factors. To channel the opportunities for their population authorities design transportation development plans which are the guidelines for future progress.

Among others the questions posed in the workshop will be: What influences mobility? How do you provide accessibility? And how do you make a just strategy for transportation? From two topics with a different perspective – one is more the regulative part and official views on transport and its (desired) organisation, the other more the individual needs of every person – we will get to a discussion and wrap up of how these two can be brought together to work out a plan that meets the needs of everyone and acknowledges how we move and why.

Why do we move the way we do?

(Training) Place Matters! – Read, understand, use places
Andrea Porru (EGEA Roma)

Many people think that, in a world run through by Google cars and with a reassuring GPS signal beaming from above, exploring places is nowadays an out-to-date experience, a relic to place in museums with caravels and sextants. But as geographers we know that place still matters: spatial data is important, but our human skill in reading places is important as well. And if people around us keep losing this capability to understand what a place can offer, improving our “place-reading skills” becomes a huge asset.

True to our motto, we will experience geography exploring (a piece of) Europe. We’ll test together how to understand what lies in a place new to us, trying out some methods to get directions and to get useful pieces of information from what surrounds us. If you want to improve your orientation skills, or you wish to try how to employ your experience in reading what places offer, this training is for you.

Place matters!