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U of M is home to many students, staff, and faculty that teach and do research on different aspects of geospatial science. See the list below for faculty and pages on curriculum and research. Also see the facilities and connections pages for more ways to meet people doing geospatial research.
Here you will find:
|Applied Economics (CFANS)|
|Frances R. Homansfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Steven J. Taffemail@example.com|
|Biosystems and Agricultural Engineering (CFANS)|
|Center for Transportation Studies (CTS)|
|Civil Engineering (CSE)|
|David M. Levinsonfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Otto D. L. Strackemail@example.com|
|Child Development (CEHD)|
|Computer Science (CSE)|
|Center for Urban and Regional Affairs|
|Curriculum and Instruction (CEHD)|
|Design/Architecture/Landscape Architecture (Design)|
|Ecology, Evolution and Behavior (CBS)|
|Edward J. Cushingfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Electrical and Computer Engineering (CSE)|
|Epidemiology and Community Health (SPH)|
|Extension - Community Economics|
|Fisheries, Wildlife, and Conservation Biology (CFANS)|
|Ira R. Adelman||adelm001@umn|
|Forest Resources (CFANS)
|Thomas E. Burkemail@example.com|
|Geography -- Twin Cities (CLA)|
|Geography -- Duluth|
|Geology and Geophysics (NHWSES)|
|Horticulture Science (CFANS)|
|Humphrey Institute (HHH)|
|Zhirong (Jerry) Zhaofirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Information and Decision Sciences (CSOM)|
|Gordon Everest (emeritus)||email@example.com|
|Robert Kauffman (emeritus)||firstname.lastname@example.org|
|Minnesota Geological Survey|
|Minnesota Population Center|
|David Van Riperemail@example.com|
|MGIS Graduate Faculty (CLA)|
|Robert J. Makifirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Natural Resources Research Institute (Duluth)|
|Postsecondary Teaching and Learning (CEHD)|
|Daniel J. Kerstenemail@example.com|
|Chad J. Marsolekfirstname.lastname@example.org|
|Soil, Water, and Climate (CFANS)|
|E. A. Nateremail@example.com|
Contact firstname.lastname@example.org to note people that may have been overlooked or to provide updated information on people already listed.
Here we present some snapshots of individual research on campus. See the research page for larger research projects and centers. Also see the facilities page. Finally, follow the links for individuals above to see their own web pages.
College of Biological Sciences (CBS)
The Department of Ecology, Evolution, and Behavior hosts several professors studying issues in visualization and spatial analysis. The Muller-Landau lab is focused on understanding the forces governing the dynamics and structure of plant populations and communities. Spatial modeling is used to uncover patterns and processes. Claudia Neuhauser’s work includes studying the role of space in community dynamics, using mathematical models to produce computer simulations. Jennifer Powers uses GIS to investigate biogeochemical and ecosystem processes across local, regional, and global scales.
College of Design (CDES)
The College of Design encompasses landscape architecture and urban design, and several faculty in the College and involved in spatial analysis research. David Pitt uses GIS to evaluate landscape from the perspectives of protecting and enhancing terrestrial and aquatic biological diversity, as well as surface and ground water quality; protecting significant commodity and amenity resources; mitigating danger from environmental hazards; and evaluating the suitability of landscape for development based on its physical features and the existing infrastructure. Laura Musacchio applies spatial analysis to her work in conservation design and planning. Jeff Crump in the Department of Design, Housing & Apparel uses GIS to study housing policy, particularly foreclosures, and economic geography.
College of Education and Human Development (CEHD)
Herbert Pick of the Institute of Child Development studies spatially coordinated behavior. For example, he researches how children use photographs and models of spatial layout to help guide subsequent searches in the actual layout.
College of Food, Agriculture, and Natural Resource Sciences (CFANS)
In Bioproducts & Biosystem Engineering, Bruce Wilson studies hydraulics of flows in erodible channels, hydrologic/water quality modeling of disturbed and agricultural watersheds, and transport of surface water contaminants. Spatial analysis and visualization is key to undertaking this research.
Several researchers in the Department of Applied Economics work in spatially applicable areas: Frances Homans studies issues pertaining to common property resources, environmental policy, fisheries, and invasive species. Steven Taff focuses on agricultural policy, especially analysis of conservation easements and farmland protection.
The Department of Forest Resources has long been involved in spatial analysis and visualization research. It is home to the Remote Sensing and Geospatial Analysis Laboratory, founded in 1972, and built upon aerial photography research that started twenty years earlier. The RSGL focuses primarily on computer-aided analysis of digital multispectral satellite data and GIS. The Lab is populated by over 30 faculty, staff, and students. The Department of Forest Resources at the University of Minnesota recently competed successfully for projects in three NASA earth sciences remote-sensing programs. The projects, totaling over $2.5 million, focus on natural resources applications of new products to be made available as part of the Earth Observing System and related NASA endeavors. All three projects involve partnering with a significant number and breadth of public and private land management organizations in Minnesota.
Remote sensing and GIS research is done by Marvin Bauer, Alan Ek, Thomas Burk, and Paul Bolstad. Joseph Knight and Andrew Jenks work on Global Positioning Systems and GIS research. Ingrid Schneider employs geospatial technology to analyze nature-based tourism and recreation.
In the Department of Soil, Water, and Climate, Ed Nater has developed a virtual museum of 3D models of minerals and molecules. Jay Bell conducts geospatial research related to soils, wetlands, and geomorphology. The Department is home to the Soil and Landscape Analysis Laboratory, which focuses on the application of digital technologies to the mapping and dissemination of soil mapping information.
Several faculty in Fisheries, Wildlife & Conservation Biology are active in visualization and spatial analysis. Yosef Cohen utilizes GIS and GPS in his study of evolutionary ecology. Ira Adelman’s research centers on environmental physiology of fishes, aquatic toxicology, and fisheries management. David Smith incorporates spatial databases into the study of conservation and animal and human behavior.
Finally, Susan Galatowitsch runs a lab in Horticulture Science focusing on ecosystem restoration and invasive species.
College of Liberal Arts
The College of Liberal Arts has a long history of geospatial research and analysis, including one of the most respected Geography departments in the country. There are over 25 faculty members across four departments in CLA working on issues concerning spatial analysis and visualization, and many others collaborating on interdisciplinary projects based in CLA locations.
Art History. Frederick Cooper in the Department of Art History coordinates the Minnesota Archaeological Researches in the Western Peloponnese Project (MARWP), in which researchers discover, document, and study buildings and towns from the 13th century onward. Much of this work is visualized in an online interactive map.
Geography. The Department of Geography at the University of Minnesota is one of the oldest departments in the United States with a strong tradition in cartography and geographic information science (GIS). In particular, GIS-related research activities by faculty and graduate students are focused on four basic areas including: Spatial Analysis and Modeling, Public Participation GIS, Organizations and GIS, and Cartography. Geography faculty are also involved in research collaborations with other units on campus. Additionally, researchers in the department are actively involved with local, national and international organizations such as MetroGIS Technical Advisory Team and Board, Minnesota GIS/LIS Consortium, University Consortium for Geographic Information Science, and the International Cartographic Association. The department is also strongly committed to outreach activities particularly in the area of community-based GIS working with local area neighborhood organizations.
Geography is also home to the Human-Environment GIS Lab (HEGIS). Members of several departments collaborate on research, education, and outreach centered on advancing Geographic Information Science (GISc) approaches to understanding human, natural, and human-environment systems. Example projects include the Minnesota Interactive Internet Mapping project, Minnesota wolf habitat, archeological prediction in Colorado and England, land use in the Southern Yucatan Peninsular region of Mexico, and many others.
The Masters of Geographic Information Science program is housed in Geography, with 20 faculty members and teaching specialists teaching and researching concepts and techniques in GIS.
The Department owns a GeoWall system (see Geology and Geophysics below) and employs a graduate research assistant for development of the system.
Finally, Geography houses the University of Minnesota Cartography Laboratory. Under the direction of Dr. Mark Lindberg, the Lab is an integral part of the Department of Geography, and has been operating for approximately forty years. The Lab produces maps and does GIS processing for a variety of clients, both on and off campus. Additionally, the Lab provides a setting where students receive hands-on experience with GIS and contemporary map production. A good portion of what is done might be described as devising ways of coaxing publication-quality maps out of the current batch of GIS software.
Geology and Geophysics. The Minnesota Geological Survey is a unit of the Newton Horace Winchell School of Earth Sciences within the Department of Geology and Geophysics. The Survey is the University’s outreach center for the science and technology of earth resources in Minnesota. It conducts basic and applied earth science research, conveys that information to the public through publications and service activities, and promotes earth science education. Minnesota is its exclusive focus.
The University of Minnesota is the lead institution on the Geowall Consortium, headed by Geology’s Paul Morin. The GeoWall project makes use of new projection technology, fast graphics cards and inexpensive computers to visualize structure and dynamics of the Earth in stereo to aid the understanding of spatial relationships. The mission of the GeoWall project is to broaden the use of scientific visualization tools for Earth Science research and education by the use of low cost virtual reality visualization devices. Individual GeoWall systems are used in Geology and Geophysics, Astronomy, New Media Studies, Geography, Curriculum and Instruction, Theater Arts and Dance, and at UMD.
Psychology. Several researchers in Psychology study issues in spatial analysis and visualization. The Department is home to eight Visual Research Laboratories. These labs include Gordon Legge’s Minnesota Laboratory for Low-Vision Research, Dan Kersten’s Computational Vision Laboratory, Chad Marsolek’s Cognitive Neuroscience Laboratory, Sheng He’s Vision and Attention Laboratory, Paul Schrater’s Computational Perception and Action Laboratory, Geoff Ghose’s Visual Nerophysiology Lab, and Cheryl Olman’s V1 fMRI & Modeling Lab. These labs use brain imaging, custom software, Virtual Reality environments, and many other techniques to investigate issues in vision and cognition.
Carlson School of Management (CSOM)
Carlson’s Department of Information and Decision Sciences is home to two researchers concerned with geospatial analysis in a business setting: Robert Kauffman focuses on e-commerce and IT infrastructure, and Gordon Everest’s work concerns database management and design and data warehousing.
Hubert H. Humphrey Institute (HHH)
The Humphrey Institute’s focus on planning includes several researchers using techniques in spatial analysis. Richard Bolan has incorporated GIS in planning and policy analysis, and in his work on many projects for local and national governments. Zhirong (Jerry) Zhao uses GIS applications in public affairs. Jason Cao incorporates geospatial technology in his studies of transportation planning and policy.
College of Science and Engineering (CSE)
Research in the Department of Civil Engineering incorporates spatial analysis and visualization through the work of several researchers. Patrick Brezonik uses remote sensing and other visualization techniques to understand humans’ impact on water quality. Efi Foufoula-Georgiou also uses remote sensing data to study rain patterns and river networks. Randal Barnes’s research looks at optimal sample design and engineering decision-making in the face of spatial variability and parameter uncertainty. David Levinson, Director of NEXUS (see below) links social, economic and physical aspects of transportation networks. Julian Marshall uses GIS to model air pollution, particularly from transportation. Finally, Otto Strack uses models to analyze groundwater mechanics.
The Department of Computer Science and Engineering is heavily involved in developing new methods and techniques in spatial analysis and visualization. It is the home of the Spatial Database and Spatial Data Mining Research Group, which has created tools like MapServer, the leading open source solution for providing maps over the internet, and Mapcube, a spatial visualization system of traffic data, among many other projects. Department faculty conducting relevant research includes John Carlis, Victoria Interrante, Ravi Janardan, Joseph Konstan, Mohamed Mokbel, Shashi Shekhar, and Loren Terveen. Topics of focus include spatial database design and administration, visualization and computer graphics, geometric computing, human-computer interaction, location-based services, and spatial data mining.
School of Public Health (SPH)
Two professors within the Division of Biostatistics contribute to geospatial research: Sudipto Banerjee focuses on statistical modeling and analysis of geographically referenced datasets, and Bradley Carlin works on the development of Bayes and empirical Bayes methods for spatial and spatio-temporal health data. Michael Oakes in Epidemiology uses spatial data to research issues in quantitative methods and social epidemiology.