Dr. Falko Schmid

Research Assistant

Universität Bremen
Enrique-Schmidt-Str. 5
28359 Bremen

+49 (0)421 218-64284


About me

I am a postdoctoral researcher at the IRTG Semantic Integration of Geospatial Information and the Transregional Collaborative Research Center Spatial Cognition. My goal of my multidisciplinary research is to improve the understanding of maps and the interaction with geographic data on small mobile devices. I aim to develop specialized maps and interaction techniques that are efficient for a specific task. During the last years I mainly gained expertise in the fields of small display cartography, schematization, mobile wayfinding assistance, volunteered geographic information, HCI, ICT4D, and cognitive representation and reasoning about space. My further research is concerned with the improvement of social interaction and communication in intelligent environments.


I Offer Internships!
Are you interested in OpenGL programming, mobile human-computer interaction, labeling or generalization? Get in contact with me!

OpenScienceMap: Fast Vector Tile Maps for Android


Learn about my new project and try it out: OpenScienceMap, super-fast vector tile maps generated from OpenStreetMap data. Navigate to and download our Android app!
Do you want to get involved? Do you want to contribute your generalization function, labeling algorithm, map interaction? Do you want to use OpenScienceMap as your evaluation platform? Just get in touch with me!

Radio feature about my older work:

Like to hear me? Listen to the radio feature about the SFB (in German)!


The main goal of my multidisciplinary research is to enhance mobile spatial assistance and data acquisition. I am interested in geographic information visualization and acquisition beyond the traditional map. In one branch of my research I develop schematic maps, highly specialized maps that are adapted to the task, the environment, and the user. schematic maps contain less information but are at the same time more efficient. The selected information is really relevant for a specific task in a specific environment for a given user. My work is based on research in the areas of spatial cognition, wayfinding behavior, place theory, geo-semantic analysis, human-computer-interaction, trajectory analysis, qualitative spatial reasoning and representation.
A further branch of my research deals with barrier-free mapping and data acquisition in the area of volunteered geographic information. Within my work in the Capacity Lab (see for more details) I develop tools for micro-mapping. The focus of this work is to enable volunteers with no training or education in geographic data acquisition and classification to contribute meaningful and processable geo-data. The development of such tools is based on the combination of insights and techniques from fields like ICT4D, HCI, and spatial cognition.
My papers contribute to small display cartography, mobile mapping, spatial cognition, location based services, ubiquitous computing, human-computer interaction, ICT4D, VGI, and moving object databases.

Research Projects


IRTG Semantic Integration of Geospatial Information

The Capacity Lab

Initial Training Network GeoCrowd

Research Center on Spatial Cognition


Location Sensitive Office Communication
WS 2006/7, SS 2007, WS 2007/8, SS 2008Spatial Interaction Lab
WS 2010/11, SS 2011, WS 2011/12 (until SS 2012)

Events Organized

MapInteract 2013: The 1st ACM SIGSPATIAL Workshop on MapInteraction, held in conjunction with ACM SIGSPATIAL 2013

SKALID 2012: Workshop on Spatial Knowledge Acquisition with Limited Information Displays

Workshop at Spatial Cognition 2012

SISSI 2010: Social Interaction in Spatially Separated Environments
Workshop at UbiComp 2010 Copenhagen

YAH2/You Are Here 2: Spatial Knowledge Awareness and Geographic Knowledge Acquisition with Small Mobile Devices
Workshop at Spatial Cognition 2010

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