Topic outline

  • General

    Spatial data science for sustainable development course introduces geographical and computational analysis approaches to study sustainability related questions. The course is inspired by the United Nation’s 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development and the Global Sustainable Development Report, as well as numerous scientific articles that have investigated sustainability related problems through the lense of geospatial analytics. Spatial data science provides various methodologies that are useful to understand, model and quantify different sustainability related phenomena. 

    After completing this course, you should:

    • understand and deepen your knowledge of a range of modern spatial data science (SDS) techniques and methodologies

    • be able to apply SDS methodologies in practice to a range of sustainability/global change related topics with Python programming language

    • have skills and understanding how to retrieve, handle and analyze modern big geospatial data in different formats.

    Course materials

    All the course materials (incl. lectures, tutorials, exercises) will be hosted on a dedicated website at

    NOTE: This means, that we won't be using MyCourses platform.

    Lessons and practicals

    Teaching of the course will happen on campus. You can find the room information for the lectures (Mondays 14:15-16), tutorial sessions (Tuesdays 14:15-16) and practical sessions (Thursdays 13:15-16) from Sisu and from the course website


    We will be using GitHub throughout the course for doing and returning the exercises. If you do not yet have a GitHub account, please create one before the course starts at:


    - GIS-E1030 Introduction to Spatial Methods, or similar knowledge (required)

    - GIS-E1060 - Spatial analytics (it is useful if you have taken this course, although not specifically required)

    - Basic programming skills with Python 

    If you are new to Python, or would like to refresh your Python skills, we recommend to start with an online and open access course called Geo-Python which is available at If you need to refresh your Python GIS skills, we recommend starting with a course Automating GIS-processes available at Both of these courses include tutorials, videos and exercises.