Distinguished Speaker

Dr. Daniel Sui, May 4, 2018

Dr. Daniel Sui

Dr. Daniel Sui

Friday, 10 am & 3:15 pm, 170 Fillmore
University at Buffalo North Campus

Dr. Daniel Sui
https://geography.osu.edu/people/sui.10
Division Director, the Social and Economic Sciences Directorate, NSF
Department of Geography
The Ohio State University
Title: Interdisciplinary Funding Opportunities and Programs at NSF

Abstract: This talk introduces new interdisciplinary funding opportunities and programs in the context of NSF’s 10 big ideas for future investment in science. This new wave of interdisciplinary research is driven by the emerging data science and led by the grand challenges at the human-technology frontier. Issues on how to balance basic inquiry with high-impact applications and innovative research with improved reproducibility will also be discussed.

Title: Mapping the new terra incognita: On geographic research in the age of convergence

Abstract: This talk presents a synoptic overview on a recent mega trend in both scientific research and science funding – convergence. By contextualizing this trend in the shifting paradigms of recent geographic research, it is argued that geography is uniquely positioned to play a leading role in convergent research in the coming years. To lead and succeed in convergent research, geographers need to make a collective effort to take calculated risks and adventure into the new terra incognita.

Distinguished Speaker

Dr. Hui Lin, April 6, 2018

Dr. Hui Lin

Dr. Hui Lin

Friday, 3:15 pm, 170 Fillmore
University at Buffalo North Campus

Dr. Hui Lin
http://www2.grm.cuhk.edu.hk/eng/people/ppl/fac_LinHui.html
Department of Geography and Resource Management & Institute of Space and Earth Information Science
The Chinese University of Hong Kong
Title: From maps to GIS and VGE: the evolution of geographic language

Abstract: GIS, after continual development in last 60 years, has been widely used in various fields by researchers, governmental officials, businessman, and many professionals and non-professionals. With its root from maps, GIS has more functions including spatial analysis and static spatial modeling. However, many GIS users today are looking for a platform which is of geo-process modeling functions, such as wild fire modeling and air pollution spreading simulation. The framework of GIS with a geo-coded database shows its bottleneck for this kind of dynamic modeling. What should we do for integrating the geo-coded database and the geo- process models? Virtual geographic environments (VGE) could be an answer as a new framework beyond GISystems.

Distinguished Speaker

Dr. Souma Chowdhury, To be rescheduled

Dr. Souma Chowdhury

Dr. Souma Chowdhury

Dr. Souma Chowdhury
http://engineering.buffalo.edu/mechanical-aerospace/people/faculty/s-chowdhury.html
Department of Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering
University at Buffalo
Title: Morphological Adaptation and Collaborative Autonomy: Towards UAVs for Complex Operations

Abstract: Unmanned Aerial Vehicles or UAVs have risen through the ranks to become uniquely useful tools in various remote sensing and humanitarian applications. While fixed-wing and multi-rotor UAV configurations and their stand-alone operation have become commonplace, their operational envelope remains limited. These are often ineffective in dealing with complex mission requirements (e.g., in search and rescue, cargo transport, and surveillance) that involve some combination of the following: take-off/landing in constrained spaces in a high endurance mission, extreme environments, time sensitive wide area coverage, and map/track spatio-temporally evolving events. This talk will focus on two very distinct areas of research that are addressing these challenges, namely hybrid UAVs and UAV swarms. Both offline reconfigurable and online-transitioning UAV morphologies have been developed in the ADAMS Lab. The latter, named BITU, is capable of transitioning between VTOL, hover, and fixed- wing like efficient forward flight. A computational design framework, which integrates aerodynamic modeling, flight dynamics, uncertainty analysis, and non-linear optimization, has been constructed and tested to design variants of BITU that can meet challenging mission requirements – offering >100 km range with 2 kg payload and VTOL capabilities. On the other end, fully-autonomous decentralized control of multi-UAV flight is being developed to serve time-critical applications such as offshore oil spill mapping and detection of flood victims over a wide area. A novel swarm-intelligence inspired waypoint- planning algorithm, that also incorporates anomaly detection and probabilistic information extraction, has been developed to allow collaborative operation of small UAVs in a manner that is adaptive to their computing and wireless-communication constraints. This talk will also briefly touch upon some of the related work in the areas of modeling, optimizing, and testing wireless communication between moving nodes (e.g., UAVs) and participation (with 3-UAV flight) in a full-scale emergency drill with Buffalo Fire and Police departments.

Distinguished Speaker

Dr. Chris Justice, February 9, 2018

Dr. Chris Justice

Dr. Chris Justice

Friday, 3:15 pm, 170 Fillmore
University at Buffalo North Campus

Dr. Chris Justice
https://geog.umd.edu/facultyprofile/Justice/Christopher
Department of Geographical Sciences
University of Maryland
NASA Land Cover Land Use Change (LCLUC) Program
Title: Global Agricultural Monitoring using Earth Observations

Abstract: The occurrence of extreme climate events and growing global population have given increased attention to global food security. Providing timely and transparent information on shortfalls in global crop production is an important step to mitigating price volatility and responding to food shortages. Satellite observations when combined with meteorological information, provide a means to monitor aspects of global agriculture. The Group on Earth Observations (GEO) is an international organization developed to coordinate enhanced use of such global earth observations. GEOGLAM is GEO’s global agricultural monitoring initiative endorsed by the G20 Agricultural Ministers. As a contribution to GEOGLAM, NASA’s Food Security and Agriculture Consortium based at the University of Maryland’s Department of Geographical Sciences, has developed a satellite-based global agricultural monitoring system in support of global agricultural markets and food security. The Crop Monitor system provides monthly assessments of global crop condition in an easy to interpret format. The system is also being applied at the national scale in a number of countries. The availability of high temporal frequency observations combined with high performance computing is opening the door to new possibilities in agricultural monitoring. Research and development are also being undertaken to develop remote sensing methods for estimating crop production.

Distinguished Speaker

Dr. Paul Torrens, October 27, 2017

Dr. Paul Torrens

Dr. Paul Torrens

Friday, 3:15 pm, 170 Fillmore
University at Buffalo North Campus

Dr. Paul Torrens
http://cusp.nyu.edu/people/paul-m-torrens/
Department of CSE and the Center for Urban Science and Progress
New York University
Title: Geosimulation for small geographies

Abstract: New forms of machine-derived geographic information continue to draw the attention of geographers to unusual vistas on long-standing problems, and with those shifted vantages, new questions have presented for our models to address, at unusual scales and for novel geographies. In response, aspects of our discipline have “gone big”, seeking-out representative data and understanding over entire geographies and entire populations, with the goal of building comprehensive and holistic understanding of often complex systems. Meanwhile, a subset of inquiry is “going deep”, focusing on the minutia of geographic processes and phenomena in an effort to explore geographies in fine detail for fleeting moments of space and time. In this talk, I will discuss our work to apply geosimulation to “small geographies” in urban settings, with the goal of building new, explorative understanding of processes and phenomena that form from “atomic” units and relationships of (and within) human and built phenomena. In introducing this work, I will focus on three examples: modeling pedestrian mobility along streetscapes, simulating mass response to building collapse, and building gesture control for autonomous vehicles. In each case, challenges of understanding, representing, and modeling small geographies of urban settings come to the fore. Tackling challenges that manifest in these varied problem-sets has led us to the development of a new pipeline for geosimulation that we think holds significant promise for geographical inquiry at new scales of observation and understanding, and which offers new benefits for the development of geocomputation atop newly-forming data-sets, particularly those generated for and by spatially-aware machines.

Distinguished Speaker

Dr. Sarah Elwood, September 22, 2017

Dr. Sarah Elwood

Dr. Sarah Elwood

Friday, 3:15 pm, 170 Fillmore
University at Buffalo North Campus

Dr. Sarah Elwood
https://geography.washington.edu/people/sarah-elwood
Department of Geography
University of Washington
Title: OutsideIn: Visualizing Poverty Politics & Homelessness   

Abstract: Normative ‘common sense’ around poverty – who is understood as poor, why, and what should be done about it – is powerfully (re)produced through dominant visual regimes. Hegemonic ways of looking and seeing are conditioned through broadly circulating visual grammars individualize poverty, stigmatize and blame impoverished people, and bind ‘poverty’ to particular (racialized, gendered, dis/abled) bodies and spaces. Beginning from relational theorizations of poverty as a site of struggle, this paper asks what other politics are possible? We explore the sites, possibilities and limits for making counter-normative poverty politics through visual practices, focusing specifically on art, performance, and other creative forms not typically seen as influential in challenging poverty. In Seattle, Washington, progressive and punitive responses to a ‘homelessness state of emergency’ declared in 2015 have sparked a wave of creative visual politics enacted through social practice art, protest performance and portraiture. Drawing on illustrative examples, we analyze artists/activists’ intentions for their disruptive visual work, the symbolic content and aesthetic forms of the work, and the spaces and relations set up through making and engaging these projects. We use relational poverty theory to trace the ways these visual poverty politics rescript spaces, reframe privilege, re-write visions of homeless bodies, and disrupt usual relations of looking and seeing across lines of poverty and privilege. We read for the possibilities and limits of disruptive poverty politics within creative visual practices.

Distinguished Speaker

Dr. Krishna Rajan, April 21, 2017

Dr. Krishna Rajan

Dr. Krishna Rajan

Friday, 3:15 pm, 170 Fillmore
University at Buffalo North Campus

Dr. Krishna Rajan
http://engineering.buffalo.edu/materials-design-innovation/community.host.html/content/shared/engineering/materials-design-innovation/profiles/faculty/rajan-krishna.html

Department of Materials Design and Innovation
University at Buffalo
Title: Data, Maps and Projections: nexus of geography and materials science

Distinguished Speaker

Dr. Michael Gould, March 31, 2017

Dr. Michael Gould

Dr. Michael Gould

Friday, 3:15 pm, 170 Fillmore
University at Buffalo North Campus

Dr. Michael Gould
https://www.linkedin.com/in/michael-gould-253b932/?ppe=1
Environmental Systems Research Institute (ESRI)
Title: GI Science/Systems: views from industry and academia