University of Twente Student Theses


Spatial and Temporal Analysis of Volunteered Phenological Observations

Shen, Fan (2012) Spatial and Temporal Analysis of Volunteered Phenological Observations.

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Abstract:Proper understanding of phenological phenomena, the interrelations among phenological phases of diverse species and how these phenological phenomena are influenced by environmental variables is essential. It is important for understanding critical issues such as climate change. Currently, phenological phenomena studies are extensively based on field experiments but few studies are conducted based on observation information collected by volunteers. Volunteered geographic information (VGI), as a total novel information collection fashion in phenology discipline, starts to play a role in phenological studies. The characteristics of VGI can massive effect to the research and yet potential benefits for phenological revelations cannot be underestimated. One typical characteristic of VGI is spatiotemporal. Due to the complexity of spatial and temporal components, there are a series of challenges in conducting comprehensive analysis of volunteered phenological information. The aim of this research is to properly analyze phenological phenomena by exploring a spatiotemporal phenological dataset collected by volunteers. The presentation, interaction, interpretation and discovery are combined together for the spatiotemporal phenomena pattern cognition. This research carries out an exploration to integrated methods in spatiotemporal analysis applied on VGI data. The integrated approach are able to: (1) perform identification and the mapping of spatiotemporal patterns present in the phenological dataset with geographic maps, time-series plots, space-time-cube and statistical analysis; (2) discover the space and time synchronous species from 13 common species kinds in the Netherlands with geovisual analytics self-organizing-map and space-time-cube visualization; (3) discover relationships between phenological patterns and common environmental variables (temperatures, evaporation and precipitation) with multivariate analysis in three dimensional presentations and parallel coordinates plots. Finally, this research shows that “mixed” methods can mitigate each other’s weakness, discover complex spatiotemporal observation pattern and explore the volunteered phenological datasets. For phenologist, this research expands a horizon for phenological phenomena pattern analyst by integrating visual, computational and cartographic methods together to detect and visualize spatiotemporal phenological observation pattern. For researchers in geographic information science, this exploration tells VGI potentials can be revealed. Key words: VGI, Phenology, Spatiotemporal synchronization, Geovisual analytics, Self-organizing-map (SOM), Multidimensional visualization
Item Type:Essay (Master)
Faculty:ITC: Faculty of Geo-information Science and Earth Observation
Programme:Geoinformation Science and Earth Observation MSc (75014)
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