Image Processing Reference
city, and the configuration of each neighbourhood indicating the urban quality of
life. For example, overlaying choropleth maps of socio-demographic features with
land-use maps give information on gender and age distribution connected with prox-
imity to urban green spaces, income and building density, or water consumption and
level of provision of infrastructure. In this context URS aids at providing spatial
information being linked to social indicators to explain the interrelations between
ecological conditions and socio-spatial development (Banzhaf et al. 2009 ).
In this volume we try to cover most of but not all of the afore-mentioned topics
and assembled widely known scholars of urban sciences specializing in the applica-
tion of geospatial technologies or, vice versa, geo-information specialists with a
distinct focus on urban and peri-urban developments to draw a widespread over-
view of the state-of-the-art knowledge in the growing field of urban remote sensing.
“Remote Sensing of Urban and Suburban Areas” has been primarily assembled to
introduce scientists and practitioners to this emerging field. Additionally it provides
instructors with a text reference that has a logical and easy-to-follow flow of topics
around which they can structure the syllabi of their urban remote sensing courses.
The following six chapters of this topic provide a comprehensive introduction in
urban theories adapted to geospatial problems and solutions. In the second part of
this topic we present techniques and applications of various data sources and meth-
odologies relevant for the analysis of urban status and dynamics.
Remote Sensing for Urban and Suburban Areas
Remote sensing in urban areas is by nature defined as the measurement of
surface radiance and properties connected to the land cover and land use in
cities. Today, data from earth observation systems are available, geocoded, and
present an opportunity to collect information relevant to urban and peri-urban
environments at various spatial, temporal, and spectral scales.
Introduction to the Chapters
Chapter 2 by Elena Besussi, Nancy Chin, Michael Batty and Paul Longley intro-
duce the different theoretical and methodological approaches to understand and
measure urban growth and urban patterns, their structure and form. The authors
emphasize the idea that the contemporary city in both developed and developing
worlds needs much more than just one theory or one method of analysis or one
typology of data to be fully understood. It clearly appears to be a challenge to
traditional analytical methods requiring interaction of social sciences and earth
sciences, and urban economics using GIS techniques to understand patterns and
trends of urbanization.
In Chapter 3 John R. Weeks reviews the vast literature on dimensions of urbaneness ,
but focuses especially on issues, such as classifying places as urban or rural by