Zhang Fan

  • Title:Assistant Professor
  • Research Domain:Geospatial Artificial Intelligence; Urban Data Science; Urban Visual Intelligence
  • Address:Institute of Remote Sensing and GIS, Peking University
  • Zip Code:100871
  • Email: fanzhanggis@pku.edu.cn





Working Experience

  • 2023.10 -   Now,    Assistant Professor, Peking University
  • 2022.09 - 2023.10, Assistant Professor, The Hong Kong University of Science and Technology
  • 2019.09 - 2022.09, Senior Research Fellow, Massachusetts Institute of Technology
  • 2017.12 - 2019.11, Postdoc, Peking University



  • 2013.10 - 2017.11, PhD, The Chinese University of Hong Kong
  • 2012.09 - 2013.11, MSc, The Chinese University of Hong Kong
  • 2008.09 - 2012.07, BS, Beijing Normal University, Zhuhai

Teaching Experience

  • CIVL4100S GIS and Urban Data Science, HKUST Instructor 2023 Spring
  • CORE1221 Data Science for Smart Cities, HKUST Instructor 2023 Fall
  • 11.S951 Senseable City: Data and Analytics, MIT Co-Instructor 2022 Spring


  • 《Transactions in Urban Data, Science, and Technology》Associate Editor
  • 《ISPRS Journal of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing》Editorial Board Member
  • BOD (Board of Directors) member of YSIN-ISDE (Young Scientist Innovation Network of the International Society for Digital Earth) 2023 - Now
  • BOD (Board of Directors) member of CPGIS (International Association of Chinese Professionals in GISciences) 2021 - 2022
  • BOD (Board of Directors) member of IEEE GRSS HK-Chapter (IEEE Geoscience and Remote Sensing Society Hong Kong Chapter) 2022 - Now


  • Geospatial Data Mining & Visual Intelligence, National Natural Science Foundation of China-Excellent Young Scientists Fund Program (Overseas) (No. 41901321), PI, 2022-2025

  • Representing Urban Physical Environment using Street View Imagery, National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 42371468), PI, 2024-2026

  • Mapping Residents’ Perception of Safety through Street View Images and Interpretable AI: A Hong Kong Case Study, Public Policy Research Funding Scheme (No. PPR23EG01), PI, 2023-2024

  • Understanding the relationship between urban physical environment and urban mobility patterns quantitatively using street view imagery, National Natural Science Foundation of China (No. 41901321), PI, 2020-2022

  • Identifying urban informal settlement using multi-source big geo-data, Tencent Academic Research Fund (No. RAGR20210101), PI, 2021-2022

  • Measuring the Evolution of Urban Renewal in the United States using Satellite Imagery and Deep Learning, Cornell-HKUST Global Strategic Collaboration Fund, PI, 2023- 2024

  • Perceptions of Urban physical environment quantification and evaluation with multi-source image data fusion, China Postdoctoral Science Foundation Grant (No. 2018M641068), PI, 2018-2019


  • Stanford's list World Top 2% scientists 2022
  • Geospatial World 50 Rising Stars 2022
  • Runner-up, MIT Water Hackathon 2022
  • Global Young Scientist Award in Frontier Science and Technology 2020
  • Second Class, Natural Science Award of Jiangxi Province 2019
  • International Scholar Exchange Fellowship, China 2018
  • Seed Award, Shanghai Open Data Apps 2016


  • Zhuangyuan Fan, Fan Zhang*, Becky PY Loo, and Carlo Ratti. Urban visual intelligence: Uncovering hidden city profiles with street view images. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, 120(27):e2220417120, 2023
  • Fan Zhang*, Arianna Salazar-Miranda, Fábio Duarte, Lawrence Vale, Gary Hack, Min Chen, Yu Liu, Michael Batty, and Carlo Ratti. Urban Visual Intelligence: Studying Cities with Artificial Intelligence and Street-Level Imagery. Annals of the American Association of Geographers, 2024.
  • Linlin You, Rui Zhu, Mei-Po Kwan, Min Chen, Fan Zhang, Bisheng Yang, Man Sing Wong, and Zheng Qin. "Unraveling adaptive changes in electric vehicle charging behavior toward the post-pandemic era by federated meta-learning." The Innovation 5(2), 2024.
  • Zhixin Zhang, Min Chen, Teng Zhong, Rui Zhu, Zhen Qian, Fan Zhang, Yue Yang, Kai Zhang, Paolo Santi, Kaicun Wang, Yingxia Pu, Lixin Tian, Guonian Lü, and Jin yuan Yan. Significant carbon mitigation potential of rooftop solar photovoltaics in China. Nature Communications, 14(2347), 2023
  • Min Chen, Zhen Qian, Niklas Boers, ... Fan Zhang, et al. Iterative integration of deep learning in hybrid earth surface system modelling. Nature Reviews Earth & Environment, 4(8):568–581, 2023
  • Fan Zhang, Jan Dirk Wegner, Bisheng Yang, and Yu Liu. Street-level imagery analytics and applications. ISPRS Journal of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing, 199:195–196, 2023
  • Fan Zhang, Zhuangyuan Fan, Yujie Hu, and Carlo Ratti. “Perception bias”: Deciphering a mismatch between urban crime rate and perception of safety. Landscape and Urban Planning, 207:104003, 2020
  • Fan Zhang, Jinyan Zu, Mingyuan Hu, Di Zhu, Yuhao Kang, Song Gao, Yi Zhang, and Zhou Huang. Uncovering inconspicuous places using social media check-ins and street view images. Computers, Environment and Urban Systems, 81:101478, 2020
  • Fan Zhang, Lun Wu, Di Zhu, and Yu Liu. Social sensing from street-level imagery: a case study in learning spatio-temporal urban mobility patterns. ISPRS Journal of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing, 153:48–58, 2019 
  • Fan Zhang, Ding Zhang, Yu Liu, and Hui Lin. Representing place locales using scene elements. Computers, Environment and Urban Systems, 71:153–164, 2018
  • Fan Zhang, Bolei Zhou, Liu Liu, Yu Liu, Helene H. Fung, Hui Lin, and Carlo Ratti. Measuring human perceptions of a large-scale urban region using machine learning. Landscape and Urban Planning, 180:148–160, 2018
  • Fan Zhang, Bolei Zhou, Carlo Ratti, and Yu Liu. Discovering place-informative scenes and objects using social media photos. Royal Society Open Science, 6(3):181375, 2019
  • Fan Zhang, Mingyuan Hu, Weitao Che, Hui Lin, and Chaoyang Fang. Framework for virtual cognitive experiment in virtual geographic environments. ISPRS International Journal of Geo-Information, 7(1):36, 2018
  • Fan Zhang, Mingyuan Hu, and Hui Lin. Virtual geographic cognition experiment in big data era. Acta Geodaetica et Cartographica Sinica, 47(8):1043–1050, 2018
  • Fan Zhang and Yu Liu. Street view imagery: methods and applications based on artificial intelligence techniques. National Remote Sensing Bulletin, 25:1057–1068, 2021
  • Yingjing Huang, Fan Zhang*, Yong Gao, Wei Tu, Fabio Duarte, Carlo Ratti, Diansheng Guo, and Yu Liu. Comprehensive urban space representation with varying numbers of street-level images. Computers, Environment and Urban Systems, 106:102043, 2023
  • Arianna Salazar Miranda, Fan Zhang*, Maoran Sun, Pietro Leoni, Fábio Duarte, and Carlo Ratti. Smart curbs: Measuring street activities in real-time using computer vision. Landscape and Urban Planning, 234:104715, 2023
  • Maoran Sun, Fan Zhang*, Fabio Durate, and Carlo Ratti. Understanding architecture ages and styles through deep learning. Cities, 128:103787, 2022
  • Chuanbo Hu, Fan Zhang*, Fangying Gong, Carlo Ratti, and Xin Li. Classification and mapping of urban canyon geometry using Google street view images and deep multitask learning. Building and Environment, 167:106424, 2020
  • Yuhao Kang, Fan Zhang*, Wenzhe Peng, Song Gao, Jinmeng Rao, Fabio Duarte, and Carlo Ratti. Understanding house price appreciation using multi-source big geo-data and machine learning. Land Use Policy, 111:104919, 2021
  • Yuhao Kang, Fan Zhang*, Song Gao, Wenzhe Peng, and Carlo Ratti. Human settlement value assessment from a place perspective: considering human mobility and perceptions in house price modeling. Cities, 117, 2021
  • Ruixian Ma, Wei Wang, Fan Zhang*, Kyuha Shim, and Carlo Ratti. Typeface reveals spatial economic patterns. Scientific Reports, 9(1):15946, 2019
  • Yuhao Kang, Fan Zhang*, Song Gao, Hui Lin, and Yu Liu. A review of urban physical environment sensing using street view imagery in public health studies. Annals of GIS, 26(3):261–275, 2020 
  • Maoran Sun, Changyu Han, Quan Nie, Fan Zhang*, and Qunshan Zhao*. Understanding building energy efficiency with administrative and emerging urban big data by deep learning in Glasgow. Energy and Buildings, 273:112331, 2022 
  • Di Zhu, Fan Zhang, Shengyin Wang, Ximeng Cheng, Zhou Huang, Yaoli Wang, and Yu Liu. Understanding place characteristics in geographic contexts through graph convolutional neural networks. Annals of the American Association of Geographers, 110(2):408–420, 2020
  • Zhuangyuan Fan, Fan Zhang, and Becky P.Y. Loo.  Rhythm of Transit Stations Uncovering  the Activity-travel Dynamics of Transit-Oriented Development in the U.S. IEEE Transactions on Intelligent Transportation Systems, 23:12503–12517, 2022
  • Chao Ye, Fan Zhang, Lan Mu, Yong Gao, and Yu Liu. Urban function recognition by integrating social media and street-level imagery. Environment and Planning B: Urban Analytics and City Science, 48(6):1430–1444, 2021
  • Chuanbo Hu, Shan Jia, Fan Zhang, Changjiang Xiao, Mindi Ruan, Jacob Thrasher, and Xin Li. Updexplainer: an interpretable transformer-based framework for urban physical disorder detection using street view imagery. ISPRS Journal of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing, 204:209–222, 2023
  • Chuan-bo Hu, Shan Jia, Fan Zhang, and Xin Li. A saliency-guided street view image inpainting framework for efficient last-meters wayfinding. ISPRS Journal of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing, 195:365–379, 2023
  • Sangwon Park, Jinyan Zu, Yang Xu, Fan Zhang, Yu Liu, and jingyan Li. Analyzing travel activity patterns in city destination: Implications for destination design. Tourism Management, 96:104718, 2023
  • Di Zhu, Ximeng Cheng, Fan Zhang, Xin Yao, Yong Gao, and Yu Liu. Spatial interpolation using conditional generative adversarial neural networks. International Journal of Geographical Information Science, 34(4):735–758, 2020
  • Shize Gong, Yong Gao, Fan Zhang, Lan Mu, Kang Chaogui, and Yu Liu. Evaluating healthcare resource inequality in Beijing China based on an improved measurement of spatial accessibility. Transactions in GIS, 25(3):1504–1521, 2021
  • Yu Liu, Yihong Yuan, and Fan Zhang. Mining urban perceptions from social media data. Journal of Spatial Information Science, 20:51–55, 2020
  • Fang-Ying Gong, Zhao-Cheng Zeng, Fan Zhang, Xiaojiang Li, Edward Ng, and Leslie K Norford. Mapping sky, tree, and building view factors of street canyons in a high-density urban environment. Building and Environment, 134:155–167, 2018
  • Andrea Chegut, Juncheng Yang, Yuhao Kang, Fan Zhang, and Helena Rong. The financial impact of street-level greenery on New York commercial buildings. Landscape and Urban Planning, 214:104162, 2021
  • Zhuangyuan Fan, Tianyu Su, Maoran Sun, Ariel Noyman, Fan Zhang, Alex Pentland, and Esteban Moro. Diversity beyond density: experienced social mixing of urban streets. PNAS Nexus, page pgad077, 2023
  • Jake Kruse, Yuhao Kang, YuNing Liu, Fan Zhang, and Song Gao. Places for play: Understanding human perception of playability in cities using street view images and deep learning. Computers, Environment and Urban Systems, 90:101693, 2021
  • Pengfei Qu, Miyang Luo, Yang Wu, Fan Zhang, Heleen Vos, Xinqian Gu, Yang Mi, Xiaoqin Luo, and Peng Jia. Association between neighborhood aesthetics and childhood obesity. Obesity Reviews, 22:e13079, 2020
  • Zhoutong Wang, Qianhui Liang, Fabio Duarte, Fan Zhang, Louis Charron, Lenna Johnsen, Bill Cai, and Carlo Ratti. Quantifying legibility of indoor spaces using deep convolutional neural networks: Case studies in train stations. Building and Environment, 160:106099, 2019 
  • Ruixian Ma, Honghui Mei, Huihua Guan, Wei Huang, Fan Zhang, Changye Xin, Wenzhuo Dai, Xiao Wen, and Wei Chen. Ladv: Deep learning assisted authoring of dashboard visualizations from images and sketches. IEEE Transactions on Visualization and Computer Graphics, 27:3717–3732, 2020
  • Kai Zhang, Min Chen, Yue Yang, Teng Zhong, Rui Zhu, Fan Zhang, Zhen Qian, Guonian Lü, and Jinyue Yan. Quantifying the photovoltaic potential of highways in China. Applied Energy, 324:119600, 2022
  • Zhen Qian, Min Chen, Yue Yang, Teng Zhong, Fan Zhang, Rui Zhu, Kai Zhang, Zhixin Zhang, Zhuo Sun, Peilong Ma, et al. Vectorized dataset of roadside noise barriers in China using street view imagery. Earth System Science Data, 14(9):4057–4076, 2022
  • Ziyu Liu, Anqi Yang, Mengyao Gao, Hong Jiang, Yuhao Kang, Fan Zhang, and Teng Fei. Towards feasibility of photovoltaic road for urban traffic-solar energy estimation using street view image. Journal of Cleaner Production, 228:303–318, 2019
  • Yuhao Kang, Jonatan Abraham, Vania Ceccato, Fabio Duarte, Song Gao, Lukas Ljungqvist, Fan Zhang, Per Nasman, and Carlo Ratti. Assessing differences in safety perceptions using GeoAI and survey across neighbourhoods in Stockholm, Sweden. Landscape and Urban Planning, 236:104768, 2023
  • Yuhao Kang, Kunlin Wu, Song Gao, Ignavier Ng, Jinmeng Rao, Shan Ye, Fan Zhang, and Teng Fei. STICC: A multivariate spatial clustering method for repeated geographic pattern discovery with consideration of spatial contiguity. International Journal of Geographical Information Science, 36, 2022
  • Tang Liu, Ling Yao, Jun Qin, Ning Lu, Hou Jiang, Fan Zhang, and Chenghu Zhou. Multi-scale attention integrated hierarchical networks for high-resolution building footprint extraction. International Journal of Applied Earth Observation and Geoinformation, 109:102768, 2022