Contested Nature of Place: Knowledge Mapping for Resolving Ontological Distinctions Between Geographical Concepts

  • Pragya Agarwal
Part of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science book series (LNCS, volume 3234)


In the theoretical literature and geographical models, place is defined with reference to other spatial concepts, such as region, neighbourhood and space. The boundaries and distinctions between these concepts and place are not clear and the overlap in the semantic fields of these concepts is representative of the vagueness that exists in geographical concepts. This vagueness is a major issue in achieving interoperability in the geographical domain and for the development of a comprehensive geo-ontology. In this paper, the principles of conceptual structures are applied for mapping semantic correspondences between place and overlapping geographical concepts. Knowledge mapping is carried out for meaning negotiation from lexical analysis of syntactic proximities between concepts. Experiments with human subjects were performed to elicit the cognitive semantics inherent in conceptual schema of individuals. Distance and proximity measures resolve the cognitive semantics of the concepts. The results provide an indication of the overlap and distinctions between the semantic fields of nearby spatial concepts, and a foundation for defining the relationships and classifications to specify the ontological distinctions between geographic concepts.


Semantic Relatedness Conceptual Space Semantic Space Similarity Judgement Proximity Measure 
These keywords were added by machine and not by the authors. This process is experimental and the keywords may be updated as the learning algorithm improves.


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© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2004

Authors and Affiliations

  • Pragya Agarwal
    • 1
  1. 1.GIS Research Group, School of GeographyThe University of NottinghamNottinghamUK

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