The Bartlett Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis

Dr Huanfa Chen

Dr Huanfa Chen

Lecturer (Teaching) in Spatial Data Science and Quantitative Methods

Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis

Faculty of the Built Environment

Joined UCL
7th Feb 2019

Research summary

My research draws on GIS, machine learning, and spatio-temporal optimisation to address contemporary challenges in the planning and operations of urban services, incl. police, healthcare, and transport.

  • Theme 1: Spatial optimisation – I develop new models, algorithms, and software for spatial optimisation problems, incl. routing, districting, and location selection.

  • Theme 2: Agent-based simulation for public security – I develop ABMs to simulate police patrol in urban areas, aiming to develop an efficient strategy for patrol. I am developing ABMs that simulate unmanned aerial vehicles for maritime patrol.

  • Theme 3: Multi-modal human mobility – I seek to understand how (mode) and why (purpose) people travel in urban areas, leveraging travel surveys and GPS data and using statistical/machine learning methods.

  • Theme 4: Accessibility to health services – I evaluate the accessibility to health services and link it to the usage of health services, using the case of Covid-19 vaccination network. Then, I seek to optimise the location and provision of health services in order to achieve more equal accessibility and better coverage.

Teaching summary

I currently teach several graduate modules at CASA, including CASA0007 (Quantitative Methods), CASA0006 (Data Science for Spatial Systems), and CASA0009 (Spatial Data Capture, Storage and Analysis). 


I am currently a Lecturer of Spatial Data Science, at the Bartlett Centre for Advanced Spatial Analysis (CASA), University College London.

I joined CASA in 2019 as a Teaching Fellow and became a Lecturer and Deputy Departmental Tutor in 2020. Before that, I obtained my PhD degree in Geographical Information Science in 2019 from SpaceTimeLab, Department of Civil, Environmental, and Geomatic Engineering, UCL. I got my MSc degree in Cartography and Geographic Information Systems in 2014 and my BSc degree in Chemistry in 2011, both from Peking University, China.