FP7-IDEAS-ERC World Seastems


Analysis and visualization of the evolution of worldwide maritime flows

GeoSeastems is a project of webmapping platform dedicated to visualizing and analyzing the evolution of worldwide maritime flows. It innovates in three ways: a geo-historical approach, through the mining of untapped vessel movement data ranging from the late 19th century to nowadays; the application of spatial analysis and graph-theoretical tools; lastly, the integration and interoperability of maritime data with information on other networks through an open and collaborative platform.

An innovative webmapping platform

GeoSeastems is a webmapping platform, developed as part of the ERC World Seastems project, to analyze the evolution of worldwide maritime flows since the end of the 19th century. Such a historical amplitude is made possible by the digitization, extraction and analysis of periodical publications from Lloyd's, the world's leading maritime insurer.

Figure 1: Maritime flows and port hierarchy in the Mediterranean, sailing vessels and steamers, 1920

As well as providing a spatio-temporal dimension to the visualization and analysis of global maritime ports and flows at all scales, the GeoSeastems webmapping platform allows using advanced methods derived from geomatics, spatial analysis, and graph theory. GeoSeastems is designed to be an interface between researchers and decision-makers involved in logistics but also socio-economic decisions as well as a data interoperability platform with other databases.

Figure 2: Construction of a virtual maritime worldwide grid, snapshot of Atlantic Ocean

Although the GeoSeastems webmapping platform is primarily designed as a tool for researchers, the possibility of extensive analyses provided is of educational interest, allowing each user to discover the evolution of marine traffic determined by crises and transitions through time and space.

Figure 3: GeoSeastems webmapping platform ergonomics: port of Marseille maritime connectivity


Several institutional, associative and private partners take a hand in drawing up GeoSeastems webmapping platform: