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This event was cancelled due to the Covid-19 outbreak.


New Methods in Regional Science:

Data Science, Artificial Intelligence and Big Data Analytics

  • Coordinators of the project:
    • Abdellatif Khattabi (AMSR) et
    • Karim El Aynaoui (UM6P)
  • Scientific Committee:
    • Andrea Caragliu
    • Eduardo Haddad
    • Jean-Claude Thill
    • Karima Kourtit
    • Lakshmi Sivaramakrishnan
    • Peter Nijkamp
    • Saad Badaoui
    • Said Lahssini
    • Sumona Banerjee
    • Tomaz Dentinho
  • Organizing Committee:
    • Erdogan H. Ekiz
    • Hicham Mharzi Alaoui
    • Said Lahssini
  • Duration:  2 days: May 31 – June 1, 2020
  • Venue/Location: UM6P, Benguerir, Morocco (close to Marrakech)
  • Expected participants: 20-25 young scientists

The workshop is free of charge and the organizers will provide local logistics in Benguerir (accommodation and meals from the diner of May 30th to the lunch of June 2nd, local transportation on arrival and departure from Marrakech to Benguerir and from Benguerir to Marrakech)

The volume of available data for research and policy has more than doubled in the past decade and shows an exponential growth. This new situation is also creating unexpected opportunities for regional science research. In order to seize such opportunities and examine the changing complexity of data structures and volumes, traditional methods in regional science need to be re-thought and re-designed. Data science brings innovative methods, information processes, complex algorithms and new digital systems, with the aim to harvest and extract knowledge from huge and big data using inter alia machine-learning and artificial intelligence techniques. Such techniques will be more than ever needed in modern regional science research. A presentation of such usual approaches will be given in a dedicated workshop in relation to the RSAI World Conference in Marrakech (Morocco).

This workshop will give an overview of methods, models and computational architectures related to the above topics. The workshop will involve lectures and practical sessions related to theory, tools and practices, case studies and student’s presentations. It will familiarize participants with new machine learning techniques, supervised and unsupervised learning, segmentation methods and deep learning. Participants will also gain experience in organizing data using traditional methods as well as more modern statistical and econometric approaches.

This two days’ workshop on “New Methods in Regional Science: Data science, Artificial Intelligence and Big Data Analytics”, meant for young scientists in Morocco and elsewhere in Africa and the whole world.  It will be organized by the Moroccan Regional Science Association (AMSR) and the University Mohamed 6 Polytechnic (UM6P), in close association with the RSAI World Congress that will take place in Marrakech, Morocco, from June 2 – 5, 2020.

The workshop is offered to Master Students, PhD Candidates and early career researchers, with a view to enhancing their knowledge, their networking abilities, cooperation and start-up of their professional career. The meeting venue creates appropriate conditions, place and space to provide young scientists with a substantive training for their efficient and successful scientific career development, for the presentation of their new work, and for receiving feedback from inspiring senior scholars and from their peers.

The workshop’s organization cooperates with higher education institutions from Morocco and other countries. The workshop will create a multidisciplinary and multinational scientific environment and promises valuable scientific results in the form of new common research project proposals, publication outputs, support of young researchers, and development of scientific cooperation. Candidates have to apply for participation in this workshop.

The selection of participants for the workshop will be based on the quality of their applications.  Applications for the workshop should include an outline of the research interest and motivation of Master or PhD students; brief description of the presentation that will be delivered; institutional affiliation and current position; reference from the home institution. The plan is to nurture new talent of about 5 Master Students, 10 PhD candidates and 5 early career researchers.


  • Theory and practice
    • Jean-Claude Thill
    • Michael Goodchild (tbc)
    • Carlo de Weijer (tbc)
    • John Osth (tbc)
    • Laurie Schintler
    • Parvathy Krishnan
  • Case studies:
    • Eduardo Haddad
    • Peter Nijkamp
    • Karima Kourtit
    • Thomaz Dentinho
    • Said Lahssini and Hicham Mharzi Alaoui
    • Saad Badaoui


1st day of the workshop (Sunday)

09:00 - 09:30       Participants’ registration

09:30 - 10:45       Panel 1. Big Data and Spatial Big Data: critical issues from a regional science perspective

10:45 - 11:15       Networking coffee break

11:15 - 12:45       Presentation of research issues by junior participants (5 to 10 minutes presentation by each participant; feedback from senior scholars/mentors, discussion)

12:45 -13:45        Networking lunch

13:45 - 15:00       Panel 2. Applications on Methods in Regional Science

15:00 - 15:30       Networking coffee and tea break

15:30 - 17:00       Presentation of research issues by junior participants (5 to 10 minutes presentation by each participant, feedback from senior scholars/mentors, discussion)

20:00 - 22:00       Networking dinner

2nd day of workshop (Monday)

09:00 -13:30       Parallel Labs session: Data science, Machine Learning and Spatial Big Data Analytics

Overview global presentation and then 2-3 parallel training labs to deal with participants’ needs (oriented participants’ problem solving approach) including coffee break

13:30 - 14:30       Networking lunch

15:00                Participation in the follow-up TRSA workshop on:

 ‘Concepts and Data on:  What is the City?’

(Program TBD)

3rd day (Tuesday morning)

9:00-12:00          Workshop

12:00-13:00        Lunch

13:30                  Transfer of participants to the RSAI congress in Marrakech


For young scientists, master students and PhD students in the field of regional science we will organize an interactive workshop oriented towards practical issues of their research. Participants of the workshops will have tutorials from experienced researchers who will mentor them, and help them in creating their own plan for a successful start-up of this scientific career, in addition to a thorough help to their spatial and big data needs. The output of the workshop will be a proficiency in the use of modern methods for regional science research. In addition to a unique individual plan for a successful start-up of their scientific career, we will also offer guidance for a successful PhD completion for each workshop participant.

The individual plan for a successful start-up of the scientific career, or a successful PhD completion, will contain:

  1. Current research orientation
    1. Critical assessment
    2. Perspectives for future research orientation
  2. Research project(s)
    1. Research projects involved in
    2. Big Data and spatial data analysis issues related to each research proposal
    3. Perspectives for future research projects in which the candidates are able to participate
    4. Future research projects relevant to prepare/coordinate/join the science task
  3. Plan for study/work research abroad
    1. Choice of institution
    2. Concrete plan including possibilities of funding
  4. International cooperation
    1. With whom to cooperate?
    2. Possibilities for increasing international cooperation
  5. High quality publications
    1. Design of good publication
    2. Individual plan for high quality publications including journals/conferences/books
  6. Scientific event participation
    1. Scientific events planned to attend
    2. Scientific event likely to attend and how to achieve this (including funding)

The proposed workshop on “New Methods in Regional Science: Data Science, Machine Learning and Big Data Analytics” creates a fantastic space for nurturing new talent, fruitful discussion on individual approaches with each participant, and facilitating of valuable feedback and outputs for participants that might boost the scientific careers of talented young scholars and researchers in regional science.

Applicants should fill in the application form online and send their CV and a copy of their paper (optional, but priority will be given to applicants who submit a paper) to


  • Open for calls: March 1rst, 2020
  • Selection of participants: March 31th, 2020

30 days before the workshop:      Confirmation to participants + needs related for data science (Spatial Data, Big Data, Modelling, Architecture, and Programming Language).

Download the Workshop flyer

A propos de nous

L’AMSR a son siège à L’Institut National d’Aménagement et d’Urbanisme (INAU),
Avenue Allal El Fassi B.P 6215 - Rabat-Instituts, MAROC.
Elle est administrée par un Bureau composé de 9 personnes élues parmi ses membres lors d’une assemblée générale.

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