Call for papers

DGFK     Joint Commission on Virtual & Augmented Reality     DGPF

Special Issue: Virtual and Augmented Reality in Spatial Visualization

Editors: Dennis Edler, Thomas P. Kersten
Deadline for submissions: 01 August 2021

Due to rapid technological development and recent advances in hardware and software technology, Virtual Reality (VR) is becoming an increasingly accessible and important tool for multiple applications in science, industry and education. VR is understood as the visualization and simultaneous perception of reality and its physical characteristics within an interactive virtual environment, which is generated by a computer in real time. In recent years, VR has found applications in a broad range of fields, including urban planning, medicine (primarily in training and therapy), architecture and cultural heritage, training simulations (e.g. fire brigade, rescue services, military), construction planning and product development, the growing gaming industry, computer vision and many others. The sense of immersion achieved through virtual 3D environments offers numerous advantages, especially for the visualisation and communication in real-time of geographical data, which has traditionally been depicted in 2D maps or pseudo-3D models on the monitor screen.

Progress in sensor technologies has also spurred the growth of a market for Augmented Reality (AR). AR is the computer-aided extension of observable reality through the combination of reality and virtuality. More commonly however, AR is understood as the visual representation of additional information as a layer over the top of an image of reality. This could be, for example, the use of computer-generated content or virtual objects, including images, sound or videos, superimposed over the world by AR glasses or a smartphone. The decisive criterion is the superimposition of virtual content over reality in real time, with a continuous adaptation to the point of view of the user.

The technical capabilities in the fields of VR and AR have become increasingly obvious in our everyday lives. It is therefore no surprise that the development of VR/AR applications with compatible spatial data and data formats is a new challenge for the community of Geographic Information Science, incl. Cartography, Photogrammetry, Remote Sensing / Earth Observation, Spatial Cognition, Citizen Science, Geography and Education. To bring together research teams addressing current research topics on AR and VR in Geographic Information Science, a new commission was founded in 2019. This commission is a cooperation of The German Cartographic Society (DGfK) and The German Society for Photogrammetry, Remote Sensing and Geoinformation (DGPF).

This special issue aims to promote current developments in the field of spatial visualization based on AR and VR methods and techniques. Interested scientists and users are cordially invited to contribute to this issue by submitting an article on the latest developments, practical applications, investigations and research results. Contributions on the following topics are welcome:

  • Innovative VR/AR applications, case studies
  • User-oriented visualizations of VR/AR models
  • Human - Computer interface design
  • Innovative VR/AR devices, approaches and algorithms
  • Navigation in VR/AR
  • Audio-visual design of VR/AR applications
  • Geospatial Data Integration into Game Engines
  • Serious games (gamification) and collaborative interactions
  • Assessment of VR applications, performance comparisons
  • VR-/AR-applications in education

If you are interested in contributing to this special issue, please submit a manuscript (about 30,000 characters) by 01 August 2021 (see submission guidelines: All manuscripts will be subjected to a peer-review process. Accepted papers are published online first and are printed in KNJC issue No. 4 / 2021. If authors are eligible for DEAL, accepted papers are published open access.

If there are additional questions, please do not hesitate to contact the editors of this special issue, Dennis Edler ( and Thomas P. Kersten (