The Vespucci Institutes 2014 - Programme

 

Week 1: Fiesole (Firenze), Italy, July 7 to 11, 2014

"VGI and Citizen Science: engaging, creating and understanding" 

Week 2: Lisbon, Portugal, September 1 to 5, 2014

"Brain and Space"

 

 

Fiesole (Firenze), Italy, July 7 to 11, 2014

"VGI and Citizen Science: engaging, creating and understanding" 

Deadline extended to May 15

Facilitators: 

The Summer Institute is devoted to the commonality and differences between Citizen Science and Volunteered Geographic Information (VGI). Many Citizen Science activities are geographical (e.g. ecological observations at a specific location) while many VGI activities focus on collecting facts, identifying patterns or asking questions about a locale and therefore have similarities with science activities. Therefore issues of participation and public engagement, data quality, data integration and the analysis of information that emerge from these activities have a lot in common. The week activities will be articulated in practical scientific activities where participants will actively contribute with their knowledge, intellectual effort or with their tools and resources. Topics will cover collective intelligence, quality assurance, methodologies for data analysis, interoperability with official data sources, sustainability, governance, funding, and evaluation and impact measurements. Facilitators will provide experimental data and facilities for researchers, raise new questions and co-create a new scientific culture. Under the support of the facilitators, participants will be encouraged to explore new directions in their research, test methods from other disciplines, and experience data collection activities themselves. The summer institute is open to a wide range of citizen science and VGI activities including biodiversity/conservation observations and recording; volunteer computing that involves geographic information; volunteer thinking where the tasks are geographical location-specific; Do It Yourself (DIY) science; and community/civic science.

 

 

Lisbon, Portugal, September 1 to 5, 2014

"Brain and Space"

Facilitators:

    

How does the mammalian brain support spatial cognition and navigation? Even though research in this area has yielded many groundbreaking discoveries over the last decades, truly interdisciplinary meetings that bridge the gap between different species, computational models and artificial agents are rare, which makes it difficult to develop overarching frameworks on spatial navigation. To address this pressing issue, this Vespucci Institute will bring together a diverse group of scientists to discuss current and emerging views on the following topics:

  • Goal representations, navigational planning, and predictive coding
  • Parietal contributions to spatial memory and navigation
  • Interplay between neural computations for time and space
  • Fragmentation of space, hierarchical representations of space, different scales of space
  • Development and decay of navigation circuits across the lifespan
  • From animals to humans and back – possibilities, problems (and new solutions?) for making inferences across species
  • Simultaneous localisation and mapping (SLAM): What can robotics teach us about how navigational mechanisms might be implemented in neuronal circuits?

Finally, discussions and presentations on the latest developments in virtual environment technology will highlight new possibilities for overcoming the limitations of commonly used experimental setups.

Accommodation: List of Hotels