Calls > Session 3

3 – Web data and territorial representations

Co-facilitators: Marta SEVERO (Dicen IDF), Pierre BECKOUCHE (LADYSS), Bernard ELISSALDE (IDEES), Marianne GUÉROIS (Géographie-cités), Françoise LUCCHINI (IDEES) & Malika MADELIN (PRODIG)

With the diffusion of digital technology in our societies, researchers and pratictioners in territorial and communication sciences have increasingly undertaken analyses on data from the Web, social networks and, more generally, soft data. They focus on answering two questions: Do these new data potentially provide us with new insights into our spatial practices and our territorial representations? Do they suggest the emergence of new constraints and/or services for the population? To answer these questions, researchers are developing tools and concepts enabling them to cross-reference geolocalized data, with time information and territorial attributes of a semantic nature.

From another viewpoint, large companies, whether they are the so-called giants of the net (e.g. GAFA, with their various applications) or those of the automobile sector (with instantaneous maps of a vehicle’s environment), are setting up territorial digital matrices to cover an ever-increasing number of daily uses. Their methodological and strategic choices could lead to hegemonic standards in the digital representation of territories and therefore underline the need to take into account the citizen debate about the ethical use of such data.

By combining current scientific work with that conducted by the general public around participatory mapping or alternative census projects, this session aims to illustrate the diversity of approaches (qualitative or quantitative, spatial analysis or digital ethnography) using examples based on different social networking data sets. The papers should emphasize the challenges of the topographic and topological representation of these data as well as their display format.


Beauguitte L., Severo M., Pecout H., 2016, « Une analyse géomédiatique de l’actualité internationale : hiérarchies et effets de voisinage », L’Espace géographique, 45(2), pp. 124-141.
Elissalde B., Lucchini F. et al., 2014, "Urban events and emerging phenomena", The 4th International Conference on Complex Systems and Applications (ICCSA 2014), Le Havre.
Giraud T., Grasland C., Guérois M., Madelin M., Severo M., 2017, « Données massives et information géographique », La lettre de l’InSHS, n° 45, pp. 25-28.
Guérois M., Pavard A., Bretagnolle A., Mathian H., 2016, « Les temps de transport pour délimiter des aires urbaines fonctionnelles ? Une investigation critique à partir de trois métropoles européennes », Belgeo - Revue Belge de Géographie, n° 2,
Lucchini F., Grassot L., Elissalde B., Baudry J., 2015, "Mobile phone use, events and emergent phenomena", Proceedings of European Colloquium on Theoretical and Quantitative Geography, Bari, Italy.
Lucchini F., Elissalde B., Grassot L., Baudry J., 2016, « Paris tweets, données numériques géolocalisées et évènements urbains », Netcom, n° 30, 3/4, pp. 207-230.
Severo M., Romele A. (dir.), 2015, Traces numériques et territoires, Paris, Presses des Mines.

Expected types of paper

Methodology, fieldwork, results.

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