Fundamental laws and principles in geoinformation science

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Mikko Vastaranta, Ninni Saarinen, Tuomas Yrttimaa, Timo Tokola


Scientific laws are empirical statements, based on repeated experiments or observations, that describe or predict a range of natural phenomena. There are scientific laws and law-like statements also in the field of geoinformation sciences. Based on the Tobler’s first law of geography, “everything is related to everything else, but near things are more related than distant things”. This first law is the foundation of the fundamental concepts of spatial dependence and spatial autocorrelation. Anselin’s second principle of spatial heterogeneity argues that expectations vary across the Earth’s surface, with the important consequence that the results of any analysis depend explicitly on the bounds of the analysis. There are also some other law-like statements that are covered here. Geoinformation science is built upon theoretical foundations that have been developed in other fields such as geography, ecology, statistics, demography, operations research, sociology, mathematics, and computer science.



Forest Sciences, Geographic Information Sciences, Geography, Life Sciences, Social and Behavioral Sciences


forest sciences, geoinformatics


Published: 2020-04-11 16:53


CC BY Attribution 4.0 International

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