IAOA Summer Institute on Places and Things

July 22-25, 2019 Utrecht, Netherlands


The need to support spatial reasoning arises in domains as diverse as geographic information systems and manufacturing, yet there has been little interaction between the industrial and academic communities in these domains. The IAOA Summer Institute will bring together researchers from these domains and explore topics in spatial representation and reasoning such as notions of dimensionality, boundaries, shape, and location. It will in particular explore the variety of spatial questions that are asked in these domains, and how such questions help design and test spatial ontologies.

For example, location services are increasingly important for many companies. Knowledge-based design of electromechanical devices with moving parts remains a challenge in manufacturing.

Facilitators and Organization

Participants from all sectors of geographical information systems, manufacturing, and ontology engineering are invited to interact from July 22-25, 2019 at Utrecht University. As always, the Summer Institute will challenge the state of the art through lively discussions and hands-on problem solving rather than lengthy presentations. The International Association for Ontology and its Applications (IAOA) is a non-profit organization the purpose of which is to promote interdisciplinary research and international collaboration at the intersection of philosophical ontology, linguistics, logic, cognitive science, and computer science, as well as in the applications of ontological analysis to conceptual modeling, knowledge engineering, knowledge management, information-systems development, library and information science, scientific research, and semantic technologies in general.

Registration Information

You can register by sending an email to Michael Gruninger (gruninger@mie.utoronto.ca). The registration fee is €340.
Note: The deadline for registration is the 30th of June 2019!

Local Information



Time Sunday (21/07/19) Monday (22/07/19) Tuesday (23/07/19) Wednesday (24/07/19) Thursday (25/07/19)
8:30-9:00 - Welcome Recap Recap Recap
9:00-10:00 - Introductory round Spatial ontology (Simon Scheider) Ontology evaluation principles (Michael Gruninger) continue group work
- Spatial (core) concepts (Werner Kuhn) Spatial information ontology (CCDT) (Han Kruiger) Spatial information as a combination of structures and constraints (Brandon Bennett)
10:00-10:30 - Coffee Coffee Coffee Coffee
10:30-11:00 - Competency questions and scenarios for geospatial analysis (Haiqi Xu) In group: Start design spatial pattern In group: Answering questions with ontology pattern In group: Future work
11:00-12:00 - In group: Discuss scenarios or propose new ones (e.g. about physical objects) in groups In group: Start design spatial pattern In group: Answering questions with ontology pattern In group: Future work
12:00-13:00 - Present selected scenario with questions Present formal approach Present answers Discuss future work
13:00-14:00 - Lunch Lunch Lunch Lunch
14:00-16:00 - In group: Structure questions according to spatial concepts In group: Design Spatial pattern In group: Mathematical structures and ontology mappings -
16:00-16:30 - Coffee Coffee Coffee -
16:30-17:30 - Plenary review: Present concepts and scenario questions Plenary review: Present ontology patterns Plenary review: common patterns for spatial information? -
- - - - - -
18:00-18:30 Ice breaker event (Fundatie van Renswoude) - - - -
18:30-19:30 - - Brewery visit (Oudaen brewery) - -
19:30-21:30 - - - Dinner (Oudaen Building) -


Hotel Single Double
Malie Hotel Utrecht **** €193,51 €208,01
Ibis Utrecht *** €124,76 €135,61
Star Lodge Hotel Utrecht *** €97,64 €97,64
Bastion Hotel Utrecht *** €117,07 €131,07
Hotel Mitland Utrecht **** €115,14 €128,16
Van der Valk Utrecht **** €194,01 €209,01
Holiday Inn Express Utrecht Papendorp *** €101,98 €112,83
All prices mentioned above include breakfast. We cannot guarantee that these rooms are offered for the lowest price at this site so feel free to check room availability at other booking sites. More information about hotels and B&Bs in Utrecht can be found here.

How to get to Utrecht

About Utrecht The city of Utrecht lies in the center of the Netherlands and is about 45 km south of Amsterdam. Utrecht, with its inextricable combination of rich past and dynamic present, is a truly unique place. This 2000-year-old city teems with a wide range of interesting museums and cultural events with programs full of theater, dance, art and more. Walk the quaint streets and along the canals in the Utrecht Museum Quarter and sample the pleasant, intimate atmosphere for which Utrecht is famous. 70,000 students represent the character of this lively city of creative young people. Welcome to Utrecht!

Will you arrive at Schiphol Airport? The Dutch Railways (NS: Nederlandse Spoorwegen) makes it possible to order and download an e-ticket from Schiphol Airport to Utrecht Central Station (return and/or single fare). You can order and pay this e-ticket here. This will make you avoid the long lines in front of the ticket distribution machines.

A taxi from Amsterdam Schiphol airport to Utrecht would normally cost around €90 on the meter. Some companies can offer lower fixed fares. For example, local Utrecht taxi company UTC has a fixed €55 Utrecht-Schiphol fare either way.

Getting to Utrecht from Amsterdam Central railway station – Train services run every 15 minutes via Amsterdam Amstel. The journey takes 27 minutes. One-way tickets costs €7.50 (2nd class) or €12.80 (1st class).

Getting to Utrecht from Rotterdam – Train services run every 15 minutes from Rotterdam to Utrecht, via Rotterdam Alexander and Gouda. This 37-minute trip costs €10.30 (2nd class) or €17.50 (1st class).

If you are heading to Utrecht by rail from France/Belgium/UK, you should change at Rotterdam and not Amsterdam. This can include Eurostar passengers from London who changed in Brussels, Thalys passengers from Paris/Brussels/Antwerp and Intercity passengers from Brussels/Antwerp.

Getting to Utrecht from Eindhoven – An intercity train service runs from Eindhoven to Utrecht via Den Bosch every 15 minutes. The 49-minute trip costs €14.30 (2nd class) or €24.30 (1st class). More information for those arriving at Eindhoven airport can be found here.

International train services to/from Utrecht – The regular ICE train between Frankfurt/Cologne/Dusseldorf and Amsterdam makes a stop at Utrecht Central railway station. There is also a daily service to/from Basel in Switzerland. In addition, all the night train ''sleeper'' services to/from Amsterdam (Basel/ Zurich/ Munich/ Berlin/ Copenhagen/ Prague/ Warsaw) make a stop in Utrecht.

Public transport in Utrecht We recommend you register and reserve your Utrecht Region Pass. This is a public transport card that provides access to the entire public transport system in the Netherlands, including OV-fiets bicycle rental. It is a ''pay-as-you-go'' public transport card with national coverage linked to your credit card. You collect it at one of our pick-up locations and can immediately start to travel. For easy, hassle-free public transport travel go to www.utrechtregionpass.com. From the Utrecht Central station, the conference venue can be reached via the following busses:

Cycling in Utrecht There are several places where you can rent a bike, for example Laag Catharijne Rental & Repair. More information on cycling in Utrecht and cycling routes (fietsroutes) in the Province of Utrecht can be found here.

Useful links Utrecht municipality homepage where you can find information about the city such as transportation, attraction, etc. You can use 9292.nl to plan your journey in the Netherlands with public transportation such as buses, trams, metro, and trains. You can use the Dutch railway website to book tickets for domestic travels.For international travels within the EU, you can use the NS Internation website to book tickets.