GeoComunidad read stories about citizen engagement Wed, 23 Nov 2016 14:28:34 +0000 en-US hourly 1 GeoComunidad 32 32 Citizen Engagement Panel Discussion on Habitat III Wed, 09 Nov 2016 21:15:53 +0000 In October 2016, more than 40,000 people have met in Quito, Ecuador for the largest cities summit in United Nations history – Habitat III. Alongside the main event and development of the new Urban Agenda, participants from science, NGOs, industry and civic organizations exchanged knowledge on sustainable urban futures in the exhibition area of Habitat III.

The Habitat X Change space hosted a series of workshops, expert talks and panel discussions. On Tuesday 27th of October, the GeoCitizen team participated on a panel discussion Open Data and Citizen Engagement, leaded by Sebastian Meier from Interaction Design Lab, University of Applied Sciences Potsdam, Germany.

Event track: Data & Visualization

During the panel discussion, Maja Brisvall from Quantified Planet, a non-profit organisation and global community that collects realtime sensor data, talked about the importance of open and new opportunities for urban planners, scientists, businesses and citizens. Richard Resl & Anton Eitzinger presented the Geocitizen framework and geospatial application system that has been designed to provide easy-to-use online tools for citizens to make their voice heard through the public space of online maps and a collaborative solution-finding process for neighborhood issues. The GeoCitizen team showed examples from application of the GeoCitizen framework for GeoBarrio Quito including Auto-Evaluation by community members following the OECD Quality of life indicators, a usability study in Cali, Colombia and experiences from African farmer communities giving feedback to ongoing implementation of Climate Change Adaptation Actions.












A new version of the GeoCitizen platform was announced during the event.

The new version will be available online by beginning of 2017.

Atlas Ambiental – Habitat III Tue, 08 Nov 2016 18:25:41 +0000 This year the city of Quito was selected for hosting the HABITAT III,  United Nations Conference on Housing and Sustainable Urban Development, taking place from the 15th to the 20th of Octobre, 2016. More than 100.000 people participated in the event as well as its 500 workshops, panel sessions, plenaries, dialogs, and special sessions.

Within the conference HABITAT III the “Atlas Ambiental” was launched by representatives of the Geoinformatic Department of the University of Salzburg (Z_GIS), Austria, joined by the Secretary of Environment for the Metropolitan District of Quito (DMQ), and their local partner university Universidad San Francisco de Quito (USFQ). The presentation of the atlas was carried out by presentations in three blocks of panels and sessions to expose the respective policies of collaboration, contents and findings, missions and information for a new environmental practice, methods of visualization and dissemination with WEB GIS, Augmented and Virtual Reality for a better understanding within a collaborative decision making process about the environmental management of our urban and rural space in the DMQ.

Discussions about the use, as well as the next version of the atlas in a participatory way (including other departments of the city administration, organizations, universities and schools, enterprises and residents), were enriched by presentations of the development and research outcomes of Anton Eitzinger, in representation of the head of Z_GIS Dr. Josef Strobl, and Richard Resl, director of UNIGIS Latin America (

Download the “Atlas Ambiental” and have a look at the interactive map based on the ESRI Storymap technology.     
AmazonGISnet Mon, 26 Sep 2016 19:29:27 +0000 Using Geographic Information Systems in the Ecuadorian Amazon!

As members of the AmazonGISnet initiative, we support the indigenous nationalities of the Ecuadorian Amazon in using GIS for managing their ancestral territories. The work focusses on creating structures, mechanisms, and capacities for facilitating the access of knowledge, information, technical tools and experience in work practices and dialogs between participants of community-GIS-workshops, current and future leaders of the communities as well as experts, governmental organizations, non-governmental organizations and other related initiatives at regional or international level.

The GeoCitizen-platform serves as tool for collecting, integrating, and publishing data and (geo-referenced) information raised by the participants of the AmazonGISnet initiative. Above all, it is a tool for participatory planning, management, and use of the living space of the indigenous nationalities located in the Ecuadorian Amazon.

For more information visit:


Quito CableCar ‘Metroférico’ Tue, 28 Jun 2016 13:53:40 +0000 This initiative of the GeoCommunity aims at designing a high quality public transport system between the Central Valley of Tumbaco and the Center of Quito.

Preliminary collaborative research included studies regarding urban traffic, demand, origin and destination of journeys, demographic and socio-economic analyses, topographic and geomorphological studies, analyses of geological hazards and environmental and social impacts, and the comparison of the cost-efficiency between different means of public transportation with the evaluation of alternative routes. Finally, the optimal location of public transport nodes was evaluated by a multi-criteria analysis based on multi-disciplinary methodologies using Geoinformation Systems (GIS).

The proposed ‘Metroferico Quito’, is a cable car applying lateest 3S-technology, with 6 stations and a length of 9km with over 90% as public space (avenues and ways) and over 10% of commercial space. The system facilitates the connection of bus systems of parishes northeast of the public transport node “Tumbaco Central”, connecting the “Vía Intervalles” and “Ruta Viva” at the node “El Nacional”. A big Park and Ride station is located next to this public transport node, catalyzing the development of a pedestrian zone and invigorating the commercial center of Cumbaya with its proximity to cultural and social attractions as well as to the USFQ and other educational institutions. It continues its way to the “Rio Machangara” and overcomes a 400m difference of altitude and reaches the park “La Carolina” in the center of Quito where the connection to the Metro system of Quito can be established. The connecting station is located at the “Avenida Simón Bolívar” which provides a big Park and Ride station and an intermodal connection for all travelers from the North and South of the city. The system leads to a reduction of vehicles in the city. The total amount of time for the journey is 24 minutes, compared to the current standard of 1 hour and 25 minutes by bus.

Within the planning process, the GeoCitizen should servee as a platform for relating space to ideas, points of views, options, suggestions and discussions leading to proposals and finally to solutions generated by a collective of local experts, international experts of different disciplines, universities, schools, and civil organizations. Nowadays, the initiative ‘Metroferico Quito’ embraces members of twelve neighborhoods of Quito and its surrounding valleys.

For more information please visit our blog with posts from the year of 2011 up until now (, conferences on Youtube, as well as publications in different journals:  (spanish), Conference Contributions 2015: EAFIT, Cali, Colombia Sep.2015 / EXPOANDES, Santiago de Chile, Oct.2015

BarrioBonito – South of Quito Mon, 23 May 2016 19:33:28 +0000 Creating the Best Barrio of Quito

The citizen initiative BarrioBonito in Southern Quito aims at improving the living environment at a neighborhood scale under the principles of self-management and self-responsibility of and within the participating neighborhoods using the GeoCitizen platform. His iniciative is a response to the urgent need of identifying alternative approaches to organize the government of marginalized neighborhoods of Latin American cities. Within the BarrioBonito (spatial) information is organized and discussed in the public space of the internet providing the participants proper management intstruments to bringing into life their own ideas how to collaborate in the improvement of the living conditions in their neighborhoods. Applying the GeoCitizen framework within this iniciative shows the potential of combining powerful and interactive neighborhoods maps and new social media communication strategies in oder to support participatory decision making processes, discussion and social cohesio within the participating communities.

For more information please visit: y


]]> 0
GeoCommunity Galapagos Mon, 23 May 2016 16:07:00 +0000 Using the Resources of the Galápagos Islands in a better way!

Over the past decades, the Galápagos Islands have been facing a considerable increase of human activities (tourism, population growth, migration, and exploitation of natural resources such as seafood and agriculture, etc.). These have resulted into an increased pressure on the living space of the islands. Therefore, it is necessary to develop new concepts of collaboration between public institutions, the private sector and most importantly, the population in order to address the challenges of the development and conservation of the Galápagos. The information management and geo-referenced data used in a modern cadastral system, recent maps of land usage, technologies for monitoring of species, the management of natural resources of the energy sector, and the provision of public services have been identified as crucial elements for the authorities and local communities.

In February 2014 an international expert group of Geo-information technology together with representatives of authorities, local and regional initiatives, professors of the San Francisco University of Quito (USFQ) and citizens worked on the design of a system for organizing geo-referenced information and for sharing it with institutions, initiatives and the population of the Galápagos. The group promotes the proper use of the information for further processes like planning, monitoring, resource and tourism management, cultural purposes and education. The Geocitizen platform will be an important tool in this system permitting the community to incorporate own data and observations into the system and discuss and monitor implemented projects via public entities, NGOs and the communities.

For more information please visit:

Zoning the Volcano Ilaló Mon, 23 May 2016 15:31:28 +0000 Participating in the Development of a Sustainable Zoning of the Volcano Ilaló, Ecuador

The GeoComunity supports the initiative “Consejo de Habitantes del Ilaló” (Inhabitants Council of Ilaló) in the design and implementation of a participatory zoning process of the Ilaló volcano in the Metropolitan District of Quito, Ecuador. The Ilaló area is one of the few green areas still posessing high ecological value within close proximity to the capital of the Republic of Ecuador, Quito. By following a participatory and collaborative approach, an alternative way of land zoning was developed in 2013. This was established together with the municipality of Quito and other community initiatives in different neighborhoods (“barrios”) participating in the project. The Geocitizen is used as a key tool for specifying, discussing and monitoring the implementation of the land zoning in the area.

For more information please visit:

Climate Change Mon, 23 May 2016 15:07:50 +0000 Developing Stategies for Climate Change Adaption in Smallholder Agriculture!

The GeoCommunity supports communites of small-scale farmers in the mountainous region of Usambara Mountains in Northern Tranzania, Africa in adapting to new challenges caused by changes in climate conditions. The Geocitizen platform and its tools are used for the monitoring of the implementation of user-friendly agricultural practices with the goal of improving food security, the adaption of farmers’ practices to increase the resilience regarding effects of climate variability and the migration caused by climate change in the long run. As an extensio to the standard Geocitizen-framework, mobile applications for the implementation of agricultural practices, workshops, monitoring of implementation strategies and feedback loops between farmers, implementers, scientists and donors, have been developed in cooperation with the International Center for Tropical Agriculture (CIAT), in Cali, Colombia.

For more information please visit: