ICEOGI 2023 – International Conference on Earth Observation and Geo-spatial Information

Under the supervision of the Algerian Ministery of Higher Education and Scientific Research, the International Conference on Earth Observation and Geo-spatial Information (ICEOGI 2023) took place in May 22-24, 2023 at the conference room of the Startup’s Hall of the University of Sciences and Technology Houari Boumediene (USTHB), Algiers, Algeria. The scientific articles selected according to a reviewing process and presented in oral/poster sessions have been submitted for publication in the IEEE Xplore digital library.  The first edition of the IEEE ICEOGI was organized as a part of the Erasmus+ seed4na project activities and initiated by the two Algerian partners (USTHB, Algiers, University of Oran1, Oran) involved in this project.

The opening ceremony took place in the presence of Prof. Djamal Eddine Akretche, rector of the USTHB accompanied by the administrative staff, Prof. Mohamed Boudour, director of the National Erasmus Office (NEO), the Seed4na project members coming from: KU Leuven (Belgium), Faculty of Geodesy, University of Zagreb (Croatia), Faculty of Geo-Information Science and Earth Observation (ITC), University of Twente (The Netherlands), the Regional Center for Remote Sensing of North Africa States (CRTEAN), Tunis (Tunisia), and the international and national participants as authors. The audience were welcomed by Prof. Radja Kheddam, the conference chair followed by the local organizers.

The conference activities started by two introductory presentations; the first one given by Dr. Glenn Vancauwenberghe, the seed4na project coordinator was about “Cocreating SDI and EO Education for the Future: Experiences and results of the SEED4NA project”, the second one given by Dr. Habib Mahi, director of the space technology center related to the Algerian Space Agency (ASAL) was about “Earth Observation in the National Space Program“.

The ICEOGI 2023 conference offered during the first day an exhibition session where many stakeholders took apart as exhibitors and had the opportunity to showcase their products and activities in the field of space, remote sensing and GIS. The participating national stakeholders were the Algerian Space Agency (ASAL), the National Institute of Cartography and Remote Sensing (INCT), National Office for Rural Development Studies (BNEDER) and the ALOS/TOPCON representative in Algeria (TINMAC DZ) . The local organizers were honored by the participation of the Regional Center for Remote Sensing of North Africa States (CRTEAN), one of the fourteen SEED4NA project partners in the exhibition session. The CRTEAN stand attracted the interest of all the conference participants including the present medias. Indeed, the local press and many TV channels were invited to cover the conference activities. During the exhibition session, they asked Prof Djamal Eddine Akretch, rector of the USTHB, Prof Mohamed Boudour, director of the NEO, Dr. El Hadi Gashut, director of the CRTEAN, and Dr. Lucas De Oto, SEED4NA project member from ITC (The Netherlands), to provide their views on the first edition of this international conference.

Following the exhibition session two interesting plenary sessions attracted the attendees and aroused many questions; the first one titled “How to Do SDI When and Where There Is None?” was provided by Dr. Rolf de By UT/ ITC, Netherlands, and the second one titled “GeoAI at National Mapping Agencies in Europe” was provided by Prof. Joep Crompvoets KU Leuven (Belgium). The sessions were chaired respectively by Prof. Mejdi Kaddour, UOran1 (Algeria), and Prof. Željko Bačić, UNIZG (Croatia).

The activities of the first day ended by an oral session with four presentations about “Natural Hazard Risk Monitoring” and Chaired by Dr. El Hadi Gashut, CRTEAN (Tunisia). The second day of the ICEOGI 2023 conference continued with seven oral sessions, two poster sessions and an interesting plenary session provided by Zvonimir Nevistić ,UNIZG (Croatia) and chaired by Dr. Noureddine Aribi, UOran1 (Algeria). The talk concerned the “UAV – Flight Planning, Regulation, Processing and Applications”.

The oral sessions of the second day addressed important current issues. The first session concerned “SAR, PolSAR & TomoSAR” and was chaired by Pof. Mounira Ouarzeddine, USTHB (Algeria), the second session about “Internet of Things (IoT)” was chaired by Prof. Youcef Chibani, USTHB (Algeria), the third session related to “Geospatial Data for Smart Cities and Urban Planning” was chaired by Prof. Mejdi Kaddour, UOran1 (Algeria), the fourth session concerned “Geographic Information System (GIS)” was chaired by Prof. Vesna Poslončec-Petrić, UNIZG (Croatia), the fifth session related to “Land Change Detection” was chaired by Prof. Amina Serir, USTHB (Algeria), the sixth session about “Water & Irrigation” was chaired by Prof. Mohamed Hamoudi, USTHB (Algeria), and finally the seventh and special session related to “Training & Education“ was chaired by Dr. Glenn Vancauwenberghe, KU Leuven (Belgium) and presented by Prof. Željko Bačić, UNIZG (Croatia). In addition to Algerian participants (as authors) coming from different universities over the country, there were international participants coming from: Faculty of Geodesy, UNIZG (Croatia), Lake Chad Basin Commission (LCBC), N’Djamena (Tchad), Higher School of Engineers of Medjez El Bab ESIM (Tunisia), Computer Science department, Addis Ababa University, Addis Ababa (Ethiopia), Interdisciplinary Centre of Marine and Environmental Research, University of Porto, (Portugal), and Independent Research Group on Geospatial, Tehran (Iran).

During the third and last day of the ICEOGI 2023 conference, the participants attended to a final plenary session provided by Dr. Lucas De Oto, ITC/University of Twente (The Netherlands). The session chaired by Prof. Hrvoje Tomić, UNIZG (Croatia) was about “Teaching GI Today: An Update on Pedagogical Approaches and Instructional Design”. The session was followed by a wrap-up of the ICEOGI 2023 conference; the local organizers, the SEED4NA project members actively supporting this event and the attendees triggered a debate about the importance of such meeting, the involvement of the Phd students and its impact on the scholars community. Future plans about the next edition were also discussed.

The closing ceremony ended with the awarding of the best paper prize and the best poster prize. The selection was made by the oral sessions and the poster sessions chairs using an evaluation sheet prepared by the organizers. Dr. Glenn Vancauwenberghe, KU Leuven (Belgium), the SEED4NA project coordinator, announced the results and handed over the symbolic gifts. Afterwards, the attendees were invited to an USTHB tour, and after the lunch a visit to the Hamma Garden in Algiers was scheduled.