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



Deep Learning in ArcGIS Pro using your GPU

ArcGIS Pro includes built in tools that allow end-to-end deep learning, all within the Arc interface – from training sample labelling, through model training and final image classification / object detection. This removes the need for coding and installing the correct versions of the required libraries for machine / deep learning in Python. However, training …



Some Useful Biodiversity Platforms for Spatial Research

The following are a few useful sites for those undertaking spatial research involving species observational data in Australia primarily. These sites may contain both the observational data as well as tools for analysing this data, with direct access to curated environmental and other data layers. 1. ALA – Atlas of Living Australia ( Provides open …



Meet the Team – Alan Stenhouse

My background is in software development and I came to Adelaide to try and apply my skills towards aiding our natural world and helping to conserve our amazing biodiversity. My wife has also been pursuing her PhD in Ecology, studying Malleefowl on the Eyre Peninsula. Both of us studying concurrently has been both highly rewarding …



The Fluidity of Monitoring Blue Carbon Ecosystems

What are blue carbon ecosystems and why are they important? Mangroves, saltmarsh and seagrasses are referred to as blue carbon ecosystems. They are ‘mega’ carbon storers, at 6 to 8 Mg per hectare. This increased carbon storage is where blue carbon ecosystems get their name! When these ecosystems are degraded, much of this carbon is …



Boolcoomatta – October 2020 and March 2021

Flowering Acacia victoriaeDJI Phantom 4 ProDJI M600 + LiDARSinging HoneyeaterSturt’s Desert Pea (Swainsona formosa)