Research Highlights

The Department of Geography has a diverse and vigorous research tradition. We have four specialized concentrations within Geography

Geographical Information Science

  • Applications and developments of new technologies in Geographic Information Science
  • Remote Sensing
  • Ontology 


  • Geospatial cryptography, genetic geographic information science, and wearable environmental sensors.
  • Individual-based epidemiological modeling and inter-operable environmental modeling

Faculties in this concentration:

Ling Bian

Thomas Bittner

Geoffrey Jacquez

Le Wang

Spatial Statistics

  • Development of statistical and modeling techniques for space-time data 
  • Theoretical advancement and methodological development in geospatial data fusion and uncertainty modeling
  •  spatiotemporal analysis


  • Applications in the fields of public health, spatial demography, and hedonic modeling
  • Dynamic migration modeling, demographic forecasting
  • geohealth, with an emphasis on chronic diseases such as cancer

Economic Geography

  • Urban health and sustainability 
  • Examination of how natural, built, and social dimensions of urban environments affect opportunities for healthy living.
  • The intersection of critical development studies, economic geography and feminist theory. 


  • Uneven development of global production restructuring for workers, farmers, and communities, with a focus on Latin America and the Caribbean.
  • Firm- and institutional-level processes and the role of geography in creating divergent regional trajectories of development and decline.

Earth Systems Science

  • Erosion and sedimentation in fluvial and hillslope systems through experimentation, theory, field studies, and numerical modeling.  
  • Understand and predict the fundamental process of turbulent flow and sediment transport and determine the impact of these processes on river form and function, water quality and ecology, landscape evolution, and watershed infrastructure and integrity.  
  • Forests and how their structure and species composition changes in response to disturbances that are natural (e.g. fire) and human caused (e.g. agricultural land abandonment), and to past and future climate change. He has secondary interests in conservation, restoration, and animal ecology.
  • Ecohydrology, bio-sphere-atmosphere interactions


  • Develop and implement integrated, user-friendly analysis and modeling techniques using GIScience, Remote Sensing, Environmental Modeling, and readily available data sets to support rapid, practical and effective decision-making in managing natural resources and extreme events