Christchurch Wins GIScience 2025 Conference

27th May, 2024

GI Science in action © University of Canterbury

Christchurch, New Zealand is set to host more than 300 leading international scientists for the 13th International Conference on Geographic Information Science (GIScience) in 2025.

The four-day event, from 26 to 29 August 2025, will bring together international participants from academia, industry, and experts on urban analytics, geographic computing, movement analysis, digital mapping, and GeoAI from around the world.

Technological innovations, such as the use of AI to analyse massive geographic data sets, are developing fast. This conference creates a unique opportunity for New Zealand to contribute to cutting edge research and incorporate new methodologies into our governmental and industrial processes and decision-making.

Held biennially since 2000, GIScience is the flagship conference in its field. This is only the second time the event has been held in the Southern Hemisphere.

The conference is being organised by the Te Whare Wānanga o Waitaha | University of Canterbury (UC), along with partners at University of Auckland, Massey University, University of Otago, and supported by ChristchurchNZ and Tourism New Zealand. UC recently placed in the top 100 globally for Geography, and first equal nationally in the latest QS World Rankings.

ChristchurchNZ Head of Business Events, Megan Crum says prestigious conferences like GIScience 2025 not only boost the local economy, but importantly they contribute to scientific advancement, industry innovation, attraction of global talent, and improved social policy.

“For international GI scientists, our city will be a living classroom. We are an ideal example of a bicultural and multicultural community experiencing fast demographic and economic change, urban growth and rebuilding, alongside a diverse biosphere and sometimes turbulent physical geography. Christchurch is also a gateway to Antarctica, and it has an economy tied to the land through a large agricultural sector plus a fast-growing technology sector,” she says.

“UC's impactful research solves local and global challenges, and we pride ourselves on our inclusive community and delivering a high standard of research-led education that is accessible, flexible and future focused,” says UC Amo Matua Pūhanga | Executive Dean Engineering, Professor Saurabh Sinha.

“We are excited to be welcoming delegates from across the world to share our knowledge and collaborate to make a difference.”

UC Associate Professor of Computer Science and Software Engineering Benjamin Adams is the lead local chair for the conference.

He says Aotearoa New Zealand offers a particularly compelling backdrop for the GIScience conference. Geographic information plays a role in decision-making not only in the public and private sector to inform responses to disasters and critical issues for example, but also in the wider population, such as navigational support.

“As our organisation team demonstrates, we have a strong and growing local research community in GI Science working across all of New Zealand's universities. New Zealand is a place where interesting and varied GI Science research is being conducted and crucially where the application of geographic information science is felt across all sectors of society,” he says.

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