Earth Observations in Monitoring Sustainable Development Goals

Course Level: 
Course Open to: 
Students on-site
Academic Year: 
US Credits: 
ECTS Credits: 
Course Description: 

The aim of this course is to provide both a theoretical understanding and a practical introduction to the use of remote sensing technologies for monitoring and analysis of environmental and societal processes, contributing to achieving Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs). Introduction to electromagnetic spectrum, energy sources, radiation principles, and image processing provides students with initial understanding of remote sensing process. The course provides an overview of alternative earth observation and geospatial data collection systems, such as unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), space-based satellites and on ground GPS systems, and their characteristics. The course exposes students to the basic techniques and practical skills of digital image acquisition and processing; extracting relevant information from digital imagery and combining it with on-ground observations. Special attention is paid to basic analysis techniques of land use and land cover evolution (disaster management, food security, urbanization, climate change, etc).

The course consists of theoretical overview of scientific principles, available datasets, methods and tools following by hands-on in-class exercises, individual consultations with instructors and work on the final individual project. The course includes both OSUN-network wide online and CEU-specific onsite sessions. The course is based on “learn-by-doing” approach: instructors-led theoretical sessions will be by followed by students’ individual work. During the practical sessions the students will learn how to search for different spatial data, including raw satellite imagery, thematic data (such as land cover, climate datasets, etc.); fulfil analysis using presented methods, visualize and interpret the results. Successful participation and completion of the course depends on student’s ability for individual work and self-education.

The number of students is limited to 15

Learning Outcomes: 
  • Knowledge of Basic Principles of Remote Sensing and its applications
  • Familiarity with online satellite imagery and earth observation products
  • Practical skills in remote sensing using desktop and cloud packages (SNAP and Google Earth Engine)
  • Understanding of earth observations use in various domains and possible career paths
  • Ability to develop and conduct a practical project using geospatial methods

The evaluation is based upon student’s performance using the following categories:
·     practical sessions and homeworks (20%);
·     course project on earth observations data collection, processing and interpretation (80%)
The final project consists of identifying a problem to be analysed using remote sensing, collecting available data, applying the studied methods and presenting the obtained results, including problem formulation, data search and manipulation, and results interpretation. The project can be a technical part of thesis research.