17. Big data, open sources, generative tools

Advances in information technology are rapidly accelerating and the spectrum of digital data resources for spatial planning and design is constantly growing due to the flourishing of real-time open Big Data sources. In the present context of uncertainty and rapid change, the methods and general approaches to information communication and analysis need constant innovation for taking advantage of the potential for putting knowledge into action. Global and local environmental and societal challenges require the ability to generate real-time deeper insights on territorial conditions and dynamics, to generate alternative solutions to guide evolution, to understand the implication and make decisions based on consensus.

To what extent can we take advantage of this Big Data avalanche to address these challenges? To what extent do we need to revise traditional methods and tools to elicit useful knowledge by new data sources? To what extent the use of digital method and tools can help to keep track of planning and design processes for more democratic and responsible decision-making? To what extent those data can contribute to get better insight on the planning and design process itself?

Academic and practitioners are invited to share their findings and discuss the challenges on the use of Big data, open sources, generative tools in territorial representation, dynamics analysis, evaluation, design, impact assessment, and decision-making. Such themes as spatial data infrastructures (SDI), volunteered and social geographic information (VGI and SMGI), big data representation and visualization, spatial analysis and environmental modelling, generative design methods and tools, Planning Support Systems (PSS), and Geodesign.

The emphasis will be therefore broad, covering methodologies, methods, and approaches but fully engaging in the present day challenges and future ways forward.

A selection of papers presented in this track may be invited for publication in a special issue of an international journal.