Manuel Claeys Bouuaert studied engineering physics at the University of Ghent and worked as a PhD student at the Department of Geography of the same institution. His research focussed on mathematical modelling of pedestrian flows as well as analysing distortion in historical maps. As such he familiarised with geographic information systems (GIS), statistical programming languages (R) and databases (SQL). He also acquired teaching experience as a teaching assistant and as a youth-work instructor and volunteer.
In July 2016, he joined IPIS as a researcher and a member of the IPIS data/GIS team. He uses his technical experience to streamline the information flow at IPIS, perform on-demand data analysis for researchers and create printed and interactive maps. He also sometimes organises workshops to promote the use of IPIS Open Data, and liaises with the Open Data and OpenStreetMap community – for example by organising Mapathons.