The focus of the Geomatics Lab is on developing and applying remote sensing based methods to better understand coupled natural and human systems. Within the framework of Geography and Earth System Sciences, we focus on the land sub-system with a particular interest in land use change: Firstly, by monitoring rates and spatial patterns at which land use change is occurring, with a particular interest in areas where little is known about recent developments. Remote sensing image analysis is the cornerstone of such assessments. Secondly, we assess the consequences of land system change for ecosystem services and human well-being.
Interdisciplinary approaches are required to study and understand coupled human-environmental systems. Only few disciplines study processes in a spatially explicit way, while these give deep insights in the causes and consequences of environmental change. Geomatics – understood as the combination of remote sensing and spatial data analysis – provides a methodological framework to analyse complex systems and processes in a spatially explicit way. The focus of the Geomatics Lab is on developing and applying remote sensing based methods to better understand coupled natural and human systems.
Our research strategy is based on spatially explicit observations and models. These serve as a background for understanding and analysing functional relationships of those processes that change the Earth’s ecosystems and their services. Such insights are important prerequisites for decision makers that strive for balancing immediate needs of a growing human population versus the long-term capacity of the Earth system to provide services.
Methodologically, our focus is on spatially explicit data analyses to understand rapidly changing systems from landscape to sub-continental scales, with a strong background in remote sensing. Advanced image processing techniques such as classification strategies, mass data processing and multitemporal data analysis are major foci of our remote-sensing based research. A particular methodological focus is on hyperspectral imaging and the analysis of imaging spectroscopy data to facilitate a deeper process understanding from a geo-biophysiological perspective.
We currently include Eastern Europe, South-East Asia, the Brazilian Amazon and Cerrado, and the Berlin-Brandenburg region.