Pre-conference Workshop - Updated August 2013


Pre-Conference Workshop: Pedometrics 2013

August 26 – August 27, 2013

8:00 - 17:30 each day

Cost: 100 USD for both days

World Agroforestry Centre (ICRAF) campus

Nairobi, Kenya

(download the flyer by clicking on the file at the bottom of the page)

See below software requirements, to be installed on your computer prior to the workshop.

To register for the workshop: email to
Payment can be made onsite.

Workshop Descriptions:

1.      Basic Geostatistics with R (Gerard Heuvelink — ISRIC World Soil Information)

This workshop reviews basic geostatistical methods and shows how these methods are implemented in the R language for statistical computing. It requires no prior knowledge about geostatistics but assumes that participants are familiar with basic statistical concepts such as probability distribution, mean and variance, correlation and linear regression. The main topics addressed are: relationship between spatial variation and semivariogram, semivariogram estimation from point observations, ordinary kriging and regression kriging. The first part of the workshop is a lecture that explains the theory and illustrates it with real-world examples. The second part is a computer practical in which participants execute all steps of a basic geostatistical analysis in R using a soil pollution dataset from the Netherlands.


2.      Spatial prediction of soil variables using 3D regression-kriging - GSIF and plotKML packages for R (Tom Hengl — ISRIC World Soil Information)

This workshop continues with more advanced geostatistical methods that can be implemented in the R environment for statistical and geographical computing, namely 3D regression-kriging (soil properties) and multinomial logistic regression (soil classes). The focus of this workshop is on using R packages for daily work, i.e. operational soil mapping. The lecturer will use two packages for R (GSIF and plotKML for Google Earth) that have been developed for the purpose of automating soil mapping and that have been used for 3D mapping of key soil properties in Africa at 1 km resolution. The first part of the workshop is a lecture that explains the design and main functionality of the GSIF package. In the second part participants will use GSIF and plotKML for 3D regression-kriging of soil properties in the Ebergötzen area, Germany. This workshop will also include a demonstration of how the soil grids at 1 km were derived for the African continent using the WorldGrids repository of  covariates and the AfSP database that contains over 15,000 African legacy soil profiles.


3.      DSM Using SoLIM (A-Xing Zhu – University of Wisconsin)

SoLIM, Soil-Land Inference Model, is a new technology for digital soil mapping (DSM). It makes use of the state-of-the-art techniques in geographic information processing techniques and artificial intelligence techniques for predictively mapping under fuzzy logic. The focus of this workshop is the operation of SoLIM Solutions 2013 for DSM. SoLIM Solutions 2013 encompasses most of the recent developments in DSM techniques under the SoLIM framework. The workshop will also provide a brief introduction of the SoLIM framework and an operational perspective of the new system in deploying the SoLIM technology, the CyberSoLIM, an effort for bridging the digital divide in DSM. The workshop will be given by A-Xing Zhu and assisted by three other key members of the SoLIM group. The workshop will provide attendees with the full version of SoLIM Solutions 2013.


DAY 1 – August 26

8:00 - 8:30:        Registrations (ICRAF Conference Hall)

Workshop 1

  8:30 - 10:00:     Lecture: basic statistics and geostatistics, including variogram estimation and ordinary and regression kriging (Gerard Heuvelink)

10:00 - 10:30:    Coffee/tea break

10:30 - 12:30:    Computer practical: introduction to R, basic statistics and geostatistics with R (Gerard Heuvelink)

12:30 - 13:30:    Lunch

Workshop 2

13:30 - 15:00:    Lecture: spatial prediction of soil properties using 3D regression-kriging (Tom Hengl)

15:00 - 15:30:    Coffee/tea break

15:30 - 17:30:    Computer practical: 3D regression-kriging using the GSIF and plotKML packages for R (Tom Hengl)

 DAY 2 – August 27

  8:30 - 10:00:     Demo: spatial prediction of soil properties and classes for Africa (Tom Hengl)

10:00 - 10:30:    Coffee/tea break

Workshop 3

10:30 - 12:30:    DSM Using SoLIM: Framework and Operation I (A-Xing Zhu)

12:30 - 13:30:    Lunch

13:30 - 15:00:    DSM Using SoLIM: Operation II (A-Xing Zhu)

15:00 - 15:30:    Coffee/tea break

15:30 - 17:30:    DSM Using SoLIM: New Advances – the CyberSoLIM system (A-Xing Zhu)


Software requirements

Kindly Install the below software onto the laptops you will be using during the workshop, prior to the workshop:

R  version 3.0.0

Rstudio version 0.97‎

R packages: sp, rgdal, maptools, gstat, plotKML and GSIF

SAGA GIS 2.0.8

FWTools 2.4.7

Google Earth

ImageMagick 6.8.*


plotKML <-






Leigh Winowiecki,
Aug 22, 2013, 3:26 AM