Speaker Bio & Abstract

Willemijn Simon van Leeuwen Founder & CEO
The Netherlands

BiographyWillemijn studied cartography and GIS at the University of Utrecht and obtained her master degree in 1996. Since 2006 she is founder and CEO of the science center GeoFort. Her passion is to make people having sense of fun while exploring the future of the planet earth with the help of geo-ICT. AbstractGeoFort has won two international prizes with projects using the digital lego-game Minecraft, called GeoCraftNL. A virtual version of the Netherlands has been made while using 1.000 billion Minecraft blocks. Children can fly all over the Netherlands and see the houses, hills, lakes and streets in this 3D gaming world. It is amazing to see what kind of buildings the children make and how this platform helps them to participate in designing the future. In GeoCraftNL they are developing smart cities, designing save cycling paths, exploring the possibilities of durable energy and protecting the Netherlands by managing the water from the rivers and the see. Itís really a serious game but also with a lot of fun!

GeoFort is a science center in the Netherlands where visitors can experiment in the area of cartography and navigation on a beautiful old fortress. GeoFort emphasizes the importance of spatial thinking to a broader audience and stimulates younger people to choose a technical study. Visitors are invited to experience the geo-ICT behind climate change, renewable energy, big data, tracking 'n tracing, satellite images and geodesign.