Development of an LBS research agenda

Location Based Services (LBS) have become a research field since the early 2000s. Since that time, there have been many changes in the field, especially concerning, e.g., the increasing demands in expanding LBS from outdoor to indoor, from location-aware to context-aware, and from navigation systems and mobile guides to more diverse applications (e.g., healthcare, transportation, gaming), as well as the appearance of new interface technologies (e.g., digital glasses, smartwatch, augmented reality devices), and the increasing smartness of our environments and cities (e.g., with different kinds of sensors). At the same time, we have seen more and more LBS are entering general public’s daily life, which greatly influences how people interact with each other and their behaviors at different environments. It also brings many opportunities (e.g., for city administration and urban planning, big data) and challenges (e.g., privacy, legal and ethical issues, the “side effects” of technology) to our planet and human society. These changes open up a lot of basic and applied research questions to the LBS research community.

To motivate further LBS research and stimulate collective efforts, the ICA Commission on Location-Based Services believes that it is time to develop a cross-cutting research agenda, identifying key research questions and challenges that are essential for the LBS development in the next 5 or 10 years. Inspired by the ICA workshop “Envisioning the Future of Cartographic Research” organized by several sister commissions (cogvis, viz, use, and design), the process of producing this research agenda will be designed as a joint activity of the LBS research community:

1)  As a first step, everyone is invited to write a one or two paragraph proposal to describe what she/he believes are the “big problems” that should be addressed to bring LBS into a higher level, and why (optional). Deadline: 15 July 2016 5 August 2016Please submit your one or two paragraph proposal here.
Updates: In total, we have received 31 one-paragraph proposals. Please have a look at all the proposals here (PDF).

2) After that, the Commission chairs together with several invited experts will examine, classify and group these proposals, and provide a first list of “key problems”, which will be then published at the Commission website to seek comments and feedback at the end of August 2016.
Updates: Based on the 31 proposals, we have compiled a first list of “key problems” (PDF). Do you have any comments or suggestions for this list? Anything missing from your perspective? Please provide your feedback by 4 November.

3) A workshop will be organized on 13 November 2016 at 13:30-18:00 to refine and improve the list of “key problems”, immediately before LBS 2016. The workshop will be held in Kontaktraum, 6th floor, Gusshausstrasse 27-29 (near the LBS 2016 venue). The registration is free. Please feel invited to attend the workshop. Please register for the workshop by 30 October.
Updates: A revised list of “key problems” (PDF), based on the comments/suggestions of the workshop.

4) We aim to publish the research agenda as an open access white paper in the Journal of Location Based Services in 2017.