South African cities in general and Cape Town in particular, are undergoing fundamental and exciting change. Cape Town is a place characterised by sharp social, cultural and spatial contrasts and offers a rich research environment in a place of great natural beauty.
The School is committed to contributing to international knowledge through addressing the development, planning and design problems raised by the Southern African context. Areas of current research expertise amongst staff can be found here
The African Centre for Cities (ACC) was established in 2007 to serve as a platform for interdisciplinary research on urban issues both theoretical and applied across the University of Cape Town. The primary focus is on applied research to address complex, intractable urban problems and challenges. This is undertaken in a manner that advances novel ways of thinking about and understanding urbanism across the global South, yet is rooted in the realities of African urban spaces.
- Geographical Information Systems (GIS) research which is multidisciplinary, but is mostly performed under the banner of the Spatial Information Sytems Research Unit.
- Geodesy research led by Prof. Charles L. Merry, and is concentrated on the following fields: African Geoid Project; Space Geodesy, Earth Gravity Field and Datum Transformations
- Research in land tenure and cadastral reform which is of critical importance to South Africa's land reform process. Research in this area in the Geomatics division is headed by Jenny Whittal.
- Active research areas in Photogrammetry include: Texture mapping; Orthophoto production; Photogrammetric documentation for heritage management ; Integrating photogrammetry with other forms of spatial documentation; Point cloud mapping
- Visualisation - The Geomatics division has been involved in a number of 3D visualization projects. Most of these have been concerned with 3D reconstruction of cultural heritage buildings and other cultural resources using photogrammetric techniques and laser scanning. Current visualization research continues to concentrate on visualisation for this aspect of cultural heritage documentation.