Spatial sciences

Research leaders in spatial intelligence

The Spatial Sciences Group conducts research to improve our understanding, management and monitoring of the environment at landscape scales.

We use remote sensing, geographic information systems, ecological modelling and multi-objective decision support systems to understand spatial variability, temporal dynamics, change and interrelationships in the environment.

We work in a diversity of natural and managed ecosystems, terrestrial, aquatic and marine environments. 

Our capability is nationally and internationally unique because of a co-location of expertise in all scales of spatial imaging from unmanned aircraft to satellites, spatial big-data analysis, and environmental management. 

Major themes of our research are:

  • Spatial variation in landscape – what occurs where and why?
  • Biodiversity and landscape composition
  • Improving environmental and resource mapping
  • Assessing land, habitat, vegetation, soil and water condition
  • Monitoring environmental change over time
  • Natural resource and wildlife management planning and decision support


Research strengths


Our people



Spatial Points blog



Visualising Burnt Area Impacts on Kangaroo Island with Satellite Imagery

For the past six weeks, I have been somewhat distracted from my normal PhD research routine. My passion for rock and mineral mapping has been replaced by a strong interest in satellite bushfire scar mapping. My interest is personal, stemming from the fact that my family and I live on Kangaroo Island, and we have …



Meet The Team – Boone Law

I’m a final year PhD Candidate in Environmental Remote Sensing and Spatial Science at the University of Adelaide. Although I started my professional career as a GIS technician, for the better part of the past 20 years I have worked as an archaeological consultant, specializing in heritage surveys and rockshelter excavations in the Pilbara region …



Fantastic Fails and Where to Mind Them

We mentioned before that you may want to get comfortable in failing and feeling like a novice. The truth is, you will fail at least a few times in your life, especially if you plan to do a PhD. It’s all part of the learning experience. It’s not about the act of failing, though; it’s …



Spatial Sciences Group at IGARSS 2019 – Yokohama, Japan

This year in late July/early August, some of our lab members – Ken, Andrew, Alicia and Hannah – took a trip to Yokohama, Japan to attend the International Geoscience and Remote Sensing Symposium (IGARSS). Here we share some of the highlights. The team arrived in Yokohoma very early on a Sunday morning and after a …



“The Naming of Cats is a Difficult Matter…”

Feral cats can have a range of devastating impacts on natural ecosystems. But what exactly constitutes as a feral cat and why should it matter? Brooke Deak’s work on feral cats identifies some interesting questions, explained in her review in Animals, “The Significance of Social Perceptions in Implementing Successful Feral Cat Management Strategies: A Global …