Today (August 23, 2021), we had the honor of presenting the final webinar in the Geospatial Fellows Webinar Series. The series was hosted by the American Association of Geographers (AAG) to highlight the COVID-19 geospatial research conducted by fellows of the Geospatial Software Institute at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign.

Our lecture, Working with Students to Reproduce COVID-19 Research to Establish the Credibility of Findings and Accelerate Policymaker Adoption, highlighted the work we conduced as part of a cohort of sixteen geospatial fellows.


  • An exemplar case of Reproducibility and Open Science in a CyberGIS Scholarly Community: Kang et al’s (2020) spatial accessibility of COVID-19 healthcare resources study
  • The goal of a reproduction study should be to establish the credibility of the study’s claims, not just the computability of the study’s results
  • We reproduced six geospatial COVID-19 studies, finding that studies tend to:
    • Lack essential components (data, code, etc.) for computational reproduction
    • Lack attention to metadata for secondary data and research products
    • Need deeper interdisciplinary expertise, especially in knowledge domains of geographic analysis and epidemiology
    • Need better justification and attention to uncertainty in spatial decisions, especially with classic problems of modifiable areal units and edge effects
    • Exhibit problems of selective inference, where a few hypotheses with significant results were highlighted from a large number of exploratory analyses
  • We developed a template for reproducible research in the human-environment and geographical sciences

You can find a summary of each webinar on GSI’s Geospatial Fellows Webinar Series page.