Introduction to Geostatistics

This short course aims at introducing the basic and theoretical concepts of Geostatistics, its main applications in estimation processes, uncertainty modelling and stochastic simulations.
The course combines theory and practice, with the hands-on analysis of a case study. The attendees will be introduced to the open-source geostatistical package SGeMS (Stanford geostatistical modelling software) that will be used during the practical exercises.
The course is organized in two modules: the first one (10 hours, 2 days, 23-24 May, 2019) deals with the fundamental theories and concepts of geostatistics. The second module (20 hours, 4 days, 27-30 May, 2019) moves in deep into the geostatistical methods with an introduction to the most recent developments. Examples and discussions will be focused on potential applications to groundwater problems.


Who is it for?

Mainly for PhD students in engineering and earth sciences. The contents are also of interest to postdocs and researchers active in the field of engineering, environmental sciences and water resources.

5 Credits will be recognized to those attending the two modules and passing a final exam; the students that attend the first or the second part can gain 2 or 3 Credits, respectively, passing a final exam.


Geostatistics is a branch of statistics aimed at studying and describing stochastic processes, associated with spatial, temporal or spatiotemporal variability that show autocorrelation. The origin of geostatistics can be ascribed to the practical need of describing spatial patterns and interpolating values on those locations where sample where not available in the mining industry. The discipline has rapidly evolved beyond interpolation into stochastic simulation and uncertainty quantification. Nowadays, applications of geostatistics are common in many engineering, earth and environmental science and health areas such as: mining industry, topographic surveys, environmental science, mapping of soil and groundwater pollution, hydrology, ecology, agriculture, meteorology, public health, epidemiology, etc.

Course detailed Program

Final Program and Logistic Information

Day 1 – Thursday 23/05/2019 – Module 1

10:00 – 12:00 / 13:00 – 16:00 > Introduction. Recall of univariate and bivariate statistics. The need of spatial statistics. Characterization of spatial continuity. The variogram. Variogram models.

Day 2 – Friday 24/05/2019 – Module 1

10:00 – 12:00 / 13:00 – 16:00 > Introduction to SGeMS. Practical exercise on basic statistics calculation and variogram modeling.

Day 3 – Monday 27/05/2019 – Module 2

10:00 – 12:00 / 13:00 – 16:00 > Modeling spatial continuity. The random function model. Stationarity and ergodicity. The multiGaussian random function model.

Day 4 – Tuesday 28/05/2019 – Module 2

10:00 – 12:00 / 13:00 – 16:00 > Estimation. Ordinary kriging. Other flavors of kriging. Estimation exercise.

Day 5 – Wednesday 29/05/2019 – Module 2

10:00 – 12:00 / 13:00 – 16:00 > Modeling local uncertainty. MultiGaussian kriging. Indicator kriging. Modeling global uncertainty.

Day 6 – Thursday 30/05/2019 – Module 2

10:00 – 12:00 / 13:00 – 16:00 > Stochastic simulation. Sampling from a random function model. Sequential simulation. Simulation exercise.


The course will take place at the Department of Engineering and Architecture of the University of Parma:

Dipartimento di Ingegneria e Architettura
Parco Area delle Scienze, 181/A,
43124 Parma PR, Italy

The course is organized in the framework of the initiative TeachinParma co-funded by the Fondazione Cariparma and the University of Parma ( The TeachInParma project aims at increasing the international dimension of the PHD Schools of the University of Parma, inviting high-standing Visiting Professors from abroad to join our College of tutors.

Contact person

Prof. Maria Giovanna Tanda


The number of participants is limited to 25. There is no registration fee for the course, but participants must cover their own travel and subsistence costs. Please, register before April 30th, 2019 at the following link:

Attendee requirements

The course will be held in English. Course attendees are required to bring their own laptop for the practical exercises.

Course Lecturer

Prof. J. Jaime Gómez-Hernández


Professor J. Jaime Gómez-Hernández received his Civil Engineering Degree from Universitat Politècnica de València on 1983, then he continued his studies at Stanford University where he got an MS. Sc. in Applied Hydrogeology on 1988 and a Ph. D. in Geostatistics on 1991. Upon his return to Spain, he joined the faculty of the School of Civil Engineering of the Universitat Politècnica de València where he became full professor of Hydrogeology in 2000. Currently, he is the head of the Hydrogeology Group of the Institute for Water and Environmental Engineering.

His research has focused in the fields of geostatistics, upscaling, stochastic simulation, inverse modeling, nuclear waste disposal, uncertainty quantification and stochastic hydrogeology.
His list of publications can be consulted in Google Scholar (user=PBHrWdMAAAAJ), Orcid (0000-0002-0720-2196) or Scopus (7005555097).
h-index: 39 (according to Google Scholar)
Number of cites: 5800 (according to Google Scholar)
He has served as associate editor for the Journal of Hydrology, Hydrogeology Journal, Mathematical Geology and Spatial Statistics, currently belongs to the Editorial Board of Mathematical Geosciences, Advances in Water Resources, and Springer Nature Applied Sciences.
He has served as Secretary of the Hydrology Section of the European Geophysical Society; he has been Vicerrector of the Universitat Politècnica de València in two occasions and he has been Director General for Scientific and Technological Infrastructures for the Valencian Regional Government. Currently, he is President of the Geostatistics for Environmental Applications International Association (geoENVia).
He has organized the 1988 and 2012 Conference on Geostatistcs for Environmental Applications, the 2010 IAHR Groundwater Symposium, the 2016 10th International Congress on Geostatistics, the 2019 Interpore Annual Congress, the 2019 AIH Annual Congress, and the 2019 AGU Chapman Conference on Aquifer sustainability.
He received the Spanish Ministry of Education award to best civil engineer graduate of the class of 1983; he has been recognized as Excellent Reviewer, by the Editorial Boards of Water Resources Research and Advances in Water Resources, and as a Sentinel of Science in Environmental Science by Publons. He received the Centennial Prize to Teaching Assistants by Stanford University, and the Prize for Research in Waste Disposal by the Valencian Government.

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