Speaker Bio & Abstract

Helen McKenzie Geospatial Advocate
United Kingdom

BiographyHelen is a Geospatial Advocate at Carto, specialising in getting people excited about all things spatial! Helen has been working in the geospatial industry for 8 years in fields such as transport, infrastructure, ecology and landscape. She is passionate about empowering people with the best data and visualisations. AbstractRetail Centres: Changed Forever or Back To Normal?The global Covid-19 pandemic of the last two years has changed how we think about geography. The spatial patterns, behaviours and perceptions that once shaped our understanding of the world around us became rewritten as we entered various lockdowns and quarantines. Our worlds became smaller as we were confined to our homes, but in a sense they also became larger. Restricted from using local retail centres and restricted to delivery-based consumerism, geographic convenience became even less of a factor in purchasing decisions. Conversely, some shops which were permitted to remain open such as grocery stores had customer queues around their buildings as visiting these became one of the only permitted outdoor activities.

In this talk, Helen McKenzie (Geospatial Advocate at CARTO) takes a look at how behaviours in retail centres have changed over the last two years - drawing from the company's experience working with leading retailers such as Asda, Gap, Decathlon and Ikea. Deriving insights from data from their Spatial Data Catalog, including footfall, dwell times and consumer spending, we discuss what the impacts of the pandemic have been on physical retail centres and what their future might look like in the new normal.