0753 Spatial Business Analytics
Ass.Prof. Mag.Dr. Petra Staufer-Steinnocher
Weekly hours
Language of instruction
10/24/23 to 10/26/23
Registration via LPIS
Notes to the course
This class is only offered in winter semesters. The subject "Economic Geography" will be offered in the winter semester 2023 for the last time.
Subject(s) Master Programs
Day Date Time Room
Friday 11/10/23 09:00 AM - 12:30 PM TC.5.05
Friday 11/17/23 01:00 PM - 04:30 PM TC.5.27
Friday 11/24/23 09:00 AM - 12:30 PM TC.4.27
Friday 12/01/23 09:00 AM - 12:30 PM TC.5.13
Monday 12/04/23 02:00 PM - 06:00 PM Online-Einheit
Friday 12/15/23 09:00 AM - 01:00 PM TC.5.27
Friday 01/12/24 09:00 AM - 12:00 PM Online-Einheit
Monday 01/22/24 01:00 PM - 04:00 PM Online-Einheit
Wednesday 01/31/24 09:00 AM - 01:00 PM TC.5.27

This course explores the spatial aspects of business decisions. Hence, while much of economic geography is about processes of uneven regional development, this course, while acknowledging that decisions made by business will have an impact on regional development, will focus on the location decisions of businesses. Understanding how economically relevant spatial differences can be exploited and geographic distance, proximity and relations are key aspects to consider in strategic business decisions is essential for successful entrepreneurs and managers. The course will be taught through a combination of interactive lectures, practical computer sessions and student-led discussions and presentations of research projects developed in relation to an interesting spatial business problem.

Learning outcomes

Students will learn and understand the spatial aspects of strategic business decisions, learn how to use and employ Geographic Information Systems (GIS) to solve spatial allocation problems, and work with quantitative information to produce an empirically grounded research report. They will also get a better understanding how theories help them frame research projects and inform the methodological approach to successfully address particular research questions.

Featured methods include:

  • Evaluation of target regions using regional socioeconomic data.
  • Geomarketing: Defining and locating target groups by analyzing the spatial distribution of demand using concepts like HeatMaps, Hot Spot Analysis, and Kernel Density estimation.
  • Facility location: Determining (near) optimal locations for service and production facilities, shops, warehouses, etc.
  • Vehicle Routing: Determine optimal routes for servicing a predefined set of customers.
Attendance requirements

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  • Prüfungsimmanente Lehrveranstaltungen (PI-LV) haben Anwesenheitspflicht.

  • Sollte es durch einen wichtigen Grund zu einem Fehlen in einer Lehrveranstaltung kommen, so können maximal 20 % der gesamten Lehrveranstaltungsdauer durch eine Zusatzleistung kompensiert werden. Bei kumulierten Abwesenheiten von über 20% ist die Lehrveranstaltung zu wiederholen. Für die Fehlzeit ist ggf. eine Bestätigung (z.B. ärztliches Attest) vorzulegen.

    Wichtige Gründe sind lt. Prüfungsordnung der WU all jene, die außerhalb der Disposition des Studierenden liegen (Erkrankung, Unfall, Tod eines nahen Angehörigen). Berufliche Verpflichtungen werden nicht als wichtiger Grund im Sinne der Prüfungsordnung angesehen, da diese in der Disposition der Studierenden liegen.

Continuous assessment courses (PI) are high-interactive courses.

For a positive completion of the course an 80% presence is required.

Should there be an important reason for an absence in the course, then a maximum of 20% of the entire course duration can be missed. For cumulative absences of more than 20%, the course must be repeated. A confirmation (eg. a medical certificate) must be provided for the absence.

According to the examination regulations of the WU, important reasons are those which are outside the disposition of the student (illness, accident, death of a close relative). Professional obligations are not considered as an important reason within the meaning of the examination regulations, because they are in the disposition of the students.

Teaching/learning method(s)

Combination of interactive lectures, computer practicals, student presentations and group consultations


Tasks: max. achievable points = 100

class contribution (10)

practical assignments (30)

group project (60 in total):

  • presentation (10)
  • quality of analysis (solution strategy, usage of methods) (30)
  • final report (20)

Grading scale:

  • Excellent (1): 90% - 100%
  • Good (2): 80% - <90%
  • Satisfactory (3): 70% - <80%
  • Sufficient (4): 60% - <70%
  • Fail (5): <60%

The use of any kind of AI-based software (e.g. ChatGPT, Bard etc.) is prohibited for examinations and performance components of this course and is considered to be fraudulent or cheating, since there would be a pretense of scientific achievements.


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Availability of lecturer(s)

Petra Staufer-Steinnocher (

Office hours: by appointment


Please notice that the project reports of all groups are due at the end of the semester.

Unit details
Unit Date Contents
1 11/10/23
Theory: Business location decisions, ArcGIS Online: Basics (3.5h)

Prepare: Bring your brain to engage in discussion

2 11/17/23

ArcGIS Online: Geomarketing (3.5h)

Prepare: Readings & Do homework I (GIS tutorial)

3 11/24/23

ArcGIS Online: Location-allocation models (3.5h)

Prepare: Readings & Do homework II; think about potential group case study topics

4 12/01/23

Introduction to case study projects, coaching; AOB  (3.5h)

Prepare: Readings & Do homework III, think about potential group case study topics
5 12/04/23

Project-Coaching (4h) online: 20-30min time slots assigned per group

Bring what you have so far

6 12/15/23

Case study project proposal presentations (4h)

Prepare: Slides case study proposal

7 01/12/24

Progresss reports & Coaching (3h) online unit for all students

Prepare slides or ArcGIS Online demo for progress reports

8 01/22/24

Progresss reports & Coaching (3h) online unit for all students

Prepare slides or ArcGIS Online demo for progress reports

9 01/31/24

Case study projects final presentations (4h)

Prepare slides or ArcGIS Online StoryMaps for final presentations

Last edited: 2023-09-28