A survey on shape correspondence

Oliver Van Kaick, Hao Zhang, Ghassan Hamarneh, Daniel Cohen-Or

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


We review methods designed to compute correspondences between geometric shapes represented by triangle meshes, contours or point sets. This survey is motivated in part by recent developments in space-time registration, where one seeks a correspondence between non-rigid and time-varying surfaces, and semantic shape analysis, which underlines a recent trend to incorporate shape understanding into the analysis pipeline. Establishing a meaningful correspondence between shapes is often difficult because it generally requires an understanding of the structure of the shapes at both the local and global levels, and sometimes the functionality of the shape parts as well. Despite its inherent complexity, shape correspondence is a recurrent problem and an essential component of numerous geometry processing applications. In this survey, we discuss the different forms of the correspondence problem and review the main solution methods, aided by several classification criteria arising from the problem definition. Themain categories of classification are defined in terms of the input and output representation, objective function and solution approach. We conclude the survey by discussing open problems and future perspectives.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1681-1707
Number of pages27
JournalComputer Graphics Forum
Issue number6
StatePublished - 2011


  • Geometry processing
  • Registration
  • Semantic structure
  • Shape analysis

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Computer Graphics and Computer-Aided Design
  • Modelling and Simulation
  • Geometry and Topology


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