People “live” and constitute places every day through recurrent practices and experience. Our everyday lives, however, are complex, and so are places. In contrast to abstract space, the way people experience places includes a range of aspects like physical setting, meaning, and emotional attachment. This inherent complexity requires researchers to investigate the concept of place from a variety of viewpoints. The formal representation of place is no exception and can only be successfully addressed if we consider geographical, psychological, anthropological, sociological, cognitive, and other perspectives.

True interdisciplinary cooperation on the topic of place transcending disciplinary boundaries is still rare. Geographers have developed a rich conceptual understanding of holistic places, psychologists and cognitive scientists deal with the more individual aspects of perception and conceptualisation, and GIScience scholars are focussing on formalising and conceptualising place-based GIS. Research on place does often not cross the boundaries of those different domains. In view of the complexity outlined above, interdisciplinary accounts of place are desirable and will presumably lead to a better understanding of the concept than monodisciplinary approaches.


We welcome submissions of papers from any fields of enquiry cognate to GIScience on the following topics:

• Which approaches of place representation exist in various disciplines?
• How can existing theoretical approaches of platial representation from different disciplines be integrated towards a unified notion of place?
• How can we move forward the integration of platial information with GIS?
• What might be a suitable strategy for addressing the subjectivity inherent to platial information?
• What roles do uncertainty and fuzziness play in place-based theories?
• In which ways can places be visualised, in particular at multiple scales?
• Which novel perspectives (e.g., with respect to academic progress, practical applications, methodological frameworks) does place-based analysis provide?
• How can we demonstrate the practical usefulness of place-based information by means of examples and in comparison to spatial information?
• (Further topics are welcome if they fit the overall theme of this symposium.)

Connection to the PLATIAL Symposium Series

This Special Feature is related content wise to the PLATIAL Symposium Series on Platial Information Science. Authors who are interested in attending the next PLATIAL’20 event in Enschede ( or have contributed to PLATIAL’19 in Coventry are invited and encouraged to extend their contributions to full papers for this Special Feature following the symposium. Examples of previous PLATIAL short papers can be found online:

Submission Deadline: 30 November 2020

Review Policy

To ensure JOSIS standards are consistently applied, it is JOSIS policy that special feature submissions undergo exactly the same peer review process as regular JOSIS submissions, with the JOSIS Editors-in-Chief overseeing and making final decisions on acceptance of papers. As a consequence, it should be noted that the number of papers in a special feature is never a consideration in acceptance or rejection of submissions to a special feature issue (i.e., there is no minimum number of accepted papers in a special feature).

Author Guidelines

For information on how to prepare and format your manuscripts, please refer to the JOSIS author guidelines:

Special Feature Guest Editors

Franz-Benjamin Mocnik
ITC, University of Twente, the Netherlands, franz

René Westerholt
School of Spatial Planning, TU Dortmund University, Germany,
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