Speaking of Location 2019: Communicating about Space


A workshop to be held as part of the Conference on Spatial Information Theory (COSIT), 10th September 2019, Regensburg, Germany

Workshop Proceedings (link to CEUR-WS)

Workshop Programme

Call for Papers

Research into the description of location using human (natural) language has been approached from linguistics, geospatial, and computer science perspectives. This interdisciplinary combined workshop and tutorial will explore current developments in the area with a particular emphasis on the need for communicating about location across different contexts and for diverse purposes, and the particular challenges these differences cause for automatic generation, extraction and interpretation of natural language descriptions of geographic space.

The Scope


The Format

The event will include:



Our keynote speech will be delivered by Dr Clare Davies of Winchester University, UK.

Name That Place: exploring the brain’s gazetteer

We often speak of locations at all scales by name. Toponyms are important aspects of verbal data, not only for single locations but also their collation into larger named areas or regions – from campuses to continents. The names evoke the images, functions and experiences of each place, just like the names of ordinary objects and concepts. This talk will explore how to reconcile recent research into place semantics with current cognitive science theories on how we name and know things in general. How might it all work? Where does location (the spatial aspect) fit in? Can this help us to build usable predictions or models of what location names can tell us? By raising some exciting research potential in this area, I hope to provoke further discussion and collaboration.

Dr Davies is a Senior Lecturer in Psychology. Her research focus to date has been in spatial cognition, addressing people’s sense and understanding of space and place and also in people’s interaction with digital (spatial and other) information. She is an applied psychologist with an interdisciplinary outlook, and has collaborated widely, from geography and cartography to ergonomics, computing and information science, and from theology and clinical psychology to education and linguistics. This has mostly been within academia in the UK and US, apart from a few years in industry most recently as a Senior Research Scientist at Ordnance Survey (Great Britain’s national mapping agency).


Cognitive Discourse Analysis Tutorial: How to deal with language in spatial information and cognition research

This short tutorial session offers practical support for the systematic analysis of language data collected in relation to studies within the scope outlined above. Typically, language data (such as location descriptions or verbal representations of spatial problems) are analysed intuitively with respect to content, addressing those aspects (e.g., particular thought processes or strategies) that the speakers are themselves aware of and that are easy to understand from what they say. However, it is often possible to gain further insights based on a closer, more systematic analysis of linguistic details.

Some aspects of language use reflect cognitive aspects that go beyond conscious reflection by individual speakers, and that are not necessarily directly observable in linguistic content – such as the perspective underlying an utterance such as ‘the chair on the right’.

The tutorial session will take the participants' current or intended projects as a starting point to address the following issues, supplemented wherever suitable by practical exercises.

Scope: What kinds of studies would benefit from a closer analysis of linguistic and conceptual features represented in the language data?

Data collection:What kinds of issues need to be considered in the light of current research purposes?

Systematic linguistic analysis:Practical aspects of systematic data annotation, substantiated by linguistic insights.

Choosing an analysis focus: Language can reveal crucial insights about cognitive aspects such as perspective, granularity, inference, certainty, and more. We will discuss aspects of interest to the audience, and explore the ways in which they relate to the participants’ projects.


Research Papers

We invite submission of papers that describe current research/work in progress, between 5 and 8 pages in length including references. Submitted papers will be peer reviewed by members of the program committee, and accepted papers will be given a 15-20 minute presentation time slot during the workshop. Accepted papers will be published online in some form (e.g. CEUS-WS.org, workshop web site, University repository), and avenues for more formal publication will be discussed during the workshop.

The following research papers have been accepted for inclusion in the workshop:


Position Pitches

We invite submission of one-page position pitches, describing research ideas, proposals, opinions about the state of the research field or other material relevant to the workshop, and including one or more discussion questions. Accepted position pitches will be given a 5 minute presentation time slot, followed by time for discussion of the questions posed. Submitted position pitches will be reviewed for relevance by the workshop organisers.


Instructions for Authors

Research papers should be between 5 and 8 pages in length, and position pitches should be one page in length (including tables, figures, and references).  No specific formatting style is required, but authors are encouraged to use the standard COSIT format. Papers must be clearly presented in correct, grammatical English. References can be in any style or format as long as the style is consistent. Submissions will be accepted through Easychair.

Files for submission of final paper version (for accepted authors):

Instructions for Authors

Copyright Form (authors should sign and submit with other files)

Template for creating Latex file from scratch


Key Dates

Research Paper submission: 10 June 2019 Extended to 17th June 2019.
Notification of Acceptance: 30 June 2019 Now 7 July 2019.
Final version submission: 31st July 2019
Position Pitch Submission: Submissions can be made at any time up to 15th August 2019 and notification will be made within 2 weeks of submission.
All dates are Anywhere on Earth (AOE), which is UTC-12 hours.

Conference Organisers

Dr Kristin Stock, Massey University

Professor Chris Jones, Cardiff University

Dr Thora Tenbrink, Bangor University


Programme Committee

Ludovic Moncla, INSA Lyon
Stacy Doore, Bowdoin College
Benjamin Adams, University of Canterbury
Daniel R. Montello, University of California, Santa Barbara
Katja Egorova, Massey University
Bill Palmer, University of Newcastle
Parisa Kordjamshidi, Tulane University
Christophe Claramunt, Naval Academy Research Institute
Simon Scheider, University Utrecht
Jan Oliver Wallgrün, The Pennsylvania State University
Diedrich Wolter, University of Bamberg
Clare Davies, University of Winchester
Lesley Stirling, The University of Melbourne
Ruth Conroy Dalton, The University of Northumbria at Newcastle
Mauro Gaio, LIUPPA laboratory


This workshop follows Speaking of Location 2017, a workshop at COSIT 2017.