July 9 – 14 , 2017, Dagstuhl Seminar 17282

From Observations to Prediction of Movement


Mark Birkin (University of Leeds, GB)
Somayeh Dodge (University of Minnesota – Minneapolis, US)
Brittany Terese Fasy (Montana State University – Bozeman, US)
Richard Philip Mann (University of Leeds, GB)

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List of Participants
Shared Documents
Dagstuhl Seminar Schedule [pdf]


Whether studying humans, animals, or machines, movement analysis is key to understanding the underlying mechanisms of dynamic processes. Analysis of movement trajectories is a core element of Movement Ecology in Biology, as well as being important across disciplines as diverse as Geographic Information Sciences (GIS), Transportation, Criminology, Epidemiology, Computer Gaming, and Phylogenetics. Development of efficient algorithms for analyzing and predicting will be vital to realizing the hopes for new generation smart transport systems and smart cities. Furthermore, naturally generated trajectories provide a fascinating context for mathematical and computational study of Geometry and Stochastic Processes. This seminar continues a series of previous seminars on the description, analysis, and visualization of movement trajectories, and brings the focus onto the modeling and prediction of movement in various domains.

In particular, we aim to address the following questions:

  • What does it mean to predict a trajectory? Should we focus on predicting the spatial locations or the geometric properties?
  • What are the potential uses of accurate trajectory prediction and what degree of accuracy is required?
  • What is the relationship between accurate prediction and an understanding of the generating process? Can you have one without the other?
  • To what extent movement observations convey information on the underlying behavior of moving phenomena?
  • What is the relationship between movement and its environmental context? To what extent changes in movement patterns convey information on changes in the environment and vice versa?
  • Can we build a classification of trajectory generating mechanisms and associated trajectory properties, such as navigation by waypoints, explorative foraging?

This seminar will bring together researchers from Animal Behaviour, GIS, Computational Geometry, Data Science and other fields to exchange insights from these diverse fields. Presentations will focus both on outstanding practical questions and study systems as well as on fundamental mathematical and computational tools. Participants will be invited to introduce their own study systems, current research problems and newly developed methodologies as the basis for discussion and work groups. We hope that these groups will form the basis of many exciting new collaborations and research projects in the years ahead.

  Creative Commons BY 3.0 DE
  Mark Birkin, Somayeh Dodge, Brittany Terese Fasy, and Richard Philipp Mann

Dagstuhl Seminar Series


  • Data Structures / Algorithms / Complexity
  • Modelling / Simulation
  • Networks


  • Trajectories
  • Movement
  • Geometric algorithms
  • Graph algorithms
  • Geographic information system
  • Agent-based simulation
  • Statistical models
  • Collective motion
  • Interaction
  • Smart cities
  • Mobility
  • Human health

Book exhibition

Books from the participants of the current Seminar 

Book exhibition in the library, ground floor, during the seminar week.


In the series Dagstuhl Reports each Dagstuhl Seminar and Dagstuhl Perspectives Workshop is documented. The seminar organizers, in cooperation with the collector, prepare a report that includes contributions from the participants' talks together with a summary of the seminar.


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Furthermore, a comprehensive peer-reviewed collection of research papers can be published in the series Dagstuhl Follow-Ups.

Dagstuhl's Impact

Please inform us when a publication was published as a result from your seminar. These publications are listed in the category Dagstuhl's Impact and are presented on a special shelf on the ground floor of the library.

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