Webinars & Workshops

UCGIS hosts a series of webinars and online workshops as a service to our members and the larger GIScience community. Individuals from member institutions may always participate for free. Some of our events carry a fee for non-members, and that will be indicated on the registration form.  All sessions are recorded and are available for later viewing by members and paid registrants.

If you have questions about our series, would like to view a recording of an earlier session, or have a future topic or presenter to suggest, please contact Amy Rock.

Upcoming Webinars & Workshops

More webinars coming after our 2024 Symposium!


Previous Webinars & Workshops

Please login to access recordings.

Future Strategic Directions for UCGIS – Launching the Conversation
Presenters: Dr. Harvey Miller, UCGIS President and Dr. Jeff Hamerlinck, UCGIS President-Elect
In this webinar, we will share our ideas for developing a new strategic plan for UCGIS. The timing is right for this kind of forward-looking work, as our organization moves toward its 30th anniversary in summer 2025 and continues to evolve in a post-pandemic world. The initial groundwork for this effort was laid by the work of the UCGIS Climate Smart Task Force in fall 2023. In this session, we will share those results and use that activity as a springboard for a broader strategic planning effort. Initial organizing tasks will include an online issue identification survey and a series of membership-wide listening sessions, beginning with discussions at the CAGIS + UCGIS Symposium 2024, June 3-6, 2024 in Columbus, OH. Please tune in and engage with us as we shape the future of our community!
May 16, 2024
Humanistic GIS: Towards a Research Agenda
Presenter: Dr. Bo Zhao, University of Washington, Seattle
The accelerated proliferation of geographic information systems (GIS), especially in the last decade, has greatly expanded the connotation of GIS technology from primarily a diverse suite of digital objects, representations, and devices that create or make use of geographical information to a mediated means with which we humans experience, explore, or make sense of the world. The research perspective of humanistic GIS is proposed to better encompass the expanded category of GIS technology as well as the opportunities and challenges that go with it. Humanistic GIS offers a coherent and systematic framework that integrates existing fragmented humanism-related GIS studies and reorients the epistemological foundation by situating GIS in its mediation of human experience. This epistemological configuration not only categorizes GIS through its embodiment, hermeneutic, autonomous, and background relations with the involved human and place but it also provides an analytical structure for examining the intertwined implications of a particular instantiation of GIS. This newly proposed humanistic perspective demonstrates a sincere quest to develop and use GIS in ways that will be more empathetic and better for humanity. Moreover, drawing inspiration from this humanistic perspective, Dr. Zhao has undertaken several web cartographic and geovisual projects, such as the global refugee atlas, the shifting LGBTQ+ urban spaces, and the Archiving the CHOP. He will discuss these projects in the talk.
February 19, 2024
Using Geographic Analytics and Urban Greening Initiatives to Combat our Warming Planet
Presenter: Dr. John Wilson (University of Southern California)
This presentation will focus on a multi-year, multidisciplinary urban greening project in several Los Angeles neighborhoods and show how scientific, design, and engineering concepts and methods can be integrated with GIS and used to delineate the best locations to plant trees in order to improve lives and safeguard the planet.
Monday, January 22, 2024

Recruiting and Mentoring Graduate Students in GIScience and Cartography

Panelists: Dr. Kathleen Stewart (Univ. of Maryland), Dr. Angela Yao (Univ. of Georgia), Dr. Caglar Koylu (Univ. of Iowa), and Dr. Junghwan Kim (Virginia Tech)
Hosts: Dr. Hoeyun Kwon (Univ. of Colorado-Boulder) and Dr. Armita Kar (The Ohio State University)

Key questions:

  • What qualifications (e.g., research fit, academic achievements, GPA, etc.) do professors value the most for students? What will make students stand out in the application pool?
  • How do professors help students find their research interests and develop their own work?  What will help students stay motivated when they experience common struggles such as imposter syndrome, procrastination, and unsuccessful research experiments?
  • What different expectations or considerations do professors have when selecting and advising international students? Do professors find any struggles particularly for international students?

Sponsored in partnership with AAG, CaGIS, and GISphere

Monday, December 11, 2023

Measuring the Unmeasurable: Models of Geographical Context
Presenter: Stewart Fotheringham (Arizona State University)
Moderator: Ling Bian (University at Buffalo)

The issue of whether place significantly affects spatial behavior has long created both a philosophical and an operational schism within geography. Here we show how these schisms can be bridged by identifying how place and behavior can be linked through recognizing and incorporating what we term intrinsic contextual effects and behavioral contextual effects into models of spatial behavior. We argue that spatial modeling frameworks that attempt to relate spatial behavior to aspects of people and places might be seriously misspecified if they do not incorporate both types of contextual effects. We compare three popular statistical modeling frameworks that encompass placed-based contextual effects: spatial error models, multilevel models, and multiscale geographically weighted regression (MGWR). Using data from the 2020 US Presidential election, we demonstrate the reassuring similarity of the results from the three frameworks but also the superiority of MGWR. The inclusion of essentially unmeasurable effects within a nomothetic framework provides an important bridge between two previously distinct philosophies within geography and acts as a binding force within the discipline.

Wednesday, October 18, 2023

Air Pollution, Extreme Weather, and Urban Exposome: Evolution of Exposure Science in the Era of AI and Precision Health
Presenter: Dr. Kai Zhang (University at Albany - State University of New York)
Moderator: Dr. Zhe Zhang (Texas A&M University)

As urban populations continue to increase in the U.S. and globally, there is growing concern about the impact of urban environmental and social determinants on population health, ranging from traditional pollutants to emergent issues such as natural disasters. This talk will focus on modern exposure science approaches to characterize exposures to air pollution, natural disaster, social determinants and urban exposome as well as to incorporate them in health research to understand potential biological mechanisms. These approaches include advanced statistical models, GIS, and machine learning methods. The approaches highlighted throughout the talk are applicable to epidemiological studies, risk assessment and public health actions.

Thursday, May 18, 2023

My first 275 days at NSF
Presenter: Dr. May Yuan (University of Texas at Dallas)
Moderator: Dr. Xinyue Ye (Texas A&M University)

I joined NSF on July 18, 2022 as a rotator via an Intergovernmental Personnel Act (IPA) assignment. With fascinations and optimism, I venture into the country’s most respectful and at times mysterious funding agency that supports basic science research across all disciplines. Besides standard federal training, I get to know NSF’s culture and principles that guide operations within and outside the agency, including interactions with prospective principal investigators (PI) and managing merit reviews. In this talk, I would like to share what I, as a geographic information scientist, have learned at NSF, what common issues I see in proposals, and what funding opportunities are available for advancing research and education in GIScience, broadly defined. I welcome questions and comments on how GIScience communities can leverage NSF support to advance research and education throughout the webinar.

Wednesday, April 19, 2023

Modeling weather-related power outages: Applying analytics to inform electrical utilities
Presenter: Dr. Steven Quiring (The Ohio State University)
Moderator: Dr. Lei Zou (Texas A&M University)

Storms can cause significant damage to the electrical power system, leading to prolonged power interruptions to a large number of customers. The number of weather-related outages has increased significantly in recent years. This presentation summarizes the data-driven power outage models that we have developed for investor-owned electrical utilities in the United States.

Friday, March 31, 2023


AAG Workshop (in-person only)

Professional Development for Current and Future Geospatial Data Scientists
(part of I-GUIDE, https://i-guide.io)

Applying geospatial data science to complex and real-world problems is challenging. Solutions require multiple disciplinary perspectives, methodologies, and techniques. We cannot be experts in all, but building foundational literacy in each can be a professional asset. How can scholars build these literacies, especially outside of formal academic structures?  The Convergence Curriculum for Geospatial Data Science is an integrative framework with foundational components (analytics, computing, ethics, geospatial, and visualization) and their connections (data mining, geospatial analytics, GeoAI, and beyond). Each component can be explored independently, as needed by individuals. Join us at this workshop to experience the curriculum and learn more. 

Saturday March 25, 2023


AAG Workshop (in-person only)

Reinforcing and Enhancing Skills Sets of GIS Librarians and other GIS Support Personnel
(part the GLOW program, https://www.lib.uchicago.edu/conferences/glow/)

The workflows of and expectations for GIS librarians and other library-based GIS specialists are steadily more diverse and demanding. In this workshop, we will explore strategies for structuring research consultations and lay the groundwork for identifying and addressing individuals’ most challenging professional duties and tasks. We will consider the usage and adoption of open educational resources and review an evaluative framework designed especially for geospatial OERs. This workshop is supported with funding from the Institute for Museum & Library Services.

Thursday March 23, 2023


The Convergence Curriculum for Geospatial Data Science
Presenter: Shaowen Wang (Univ. of Illinois - Urbana-Champaign), Eric Shook (Univ. of Minnesota)
Moderator: Forrest Bowlick (Univ. of Massachusetts - Amherst)

The Convergence Curriculum for Geospatial Data Science is a major initiative supported by the National Science Foundation Institute for Geospatial Understanding through an Integrative Discovery Environment (I-GUIDE); and represents an integrative framework for preparing scholars, students, and professionals to solve complex convergence problems through critical computational and spatial thinking.

 Monday, March 6, 2023

Urban Informatics for Transport: Measuring Networks and Access around the World
Presenter: Dr. Geoff Boeing (University of Sothern California)
Moderator: Dr. Yingjie Hu (University at Buffalo)

Cities worldwide exhibit a variety of transport and land use patterns and configurations that shape human mobility, equity, health, and livelihoods. This talk discusses recent developments using open data and open source tools, in conjunction with local collaborators, to model and measure these patterns around the world.

 February 17, 2023

Using movement as a marker to study behavior responses to environmental disruptions
Presenter: Dr. Somayeh Dodge, UC Santa Barbara | Moderator: Dr. Qiusheng Wu, UT Knoxville

Intentional movement through space is one of the traits shared by humans and animals to perform activities. These spatial movements are fundamental to the dynamics of ecosystems, cities and environments, and can be utilized as a key to understand and model environmental and behavioral variability in social and ecological systems. From the lens of geographic information science, this webinar presents a number of cases studies using computational approaches to analyze the effects of environmental disruptions on peoples and animal’s behavior across different geographic and temporal scales.

February 2, 2023
Smart Mobility Data: Uses and Benefits for the GIS Industry
Exploring the value of connected vehicle data and demonstrate how incorporating it into your research can result in compelling location and geospatial insights.  Learn about the Wejo/UCGIS partnership benefits for member institutions.
November 16, 2022

Tobler’s First Law in GeoAI
Presenter: Dr. Wenwen Li (Arizona State University) | Moderator: Dr. Yongmei Lu (Texas State University)

GeoAI, or geospatial artificial intelligence, is powerful to solve complex geospatial problems. Leveraging recent breakthroughs in deep learning and advanced computing, GeoAI enables scalable processing and intelligent analysis of geospatial big data. A core issue is how to make AI integral to the geospatial science framework. This presentation will introduce a new GeoAI model that enables automated spatial object detection, especially of natural features, in a weakly supervised manner. It will also cover discussions about the enablement of spatially explicit machine learning by integrating Tobler’s First Law of Geography; as well as the generalizability of the GeoAI model, in detecting both manmade and natural features on the surface of the Earth and other planets.

 September 29, 2022
Games in Socioenvironmental Research  March 14, 2022
A GIScience framework beyond absolute space and physical place  October 20, 2021
Do Names Matter? Branding, Marketing, and Communicating about Geography, Spatial Science, and GIS. October 4, 2021
Building a Cultural Atlas with Undergraduate Students  September 16, 2021
Funding and Support Models of GIS May 5, 2021
Machines Reading Maps May 4, 2021
Teaching Coding Skills April 14, 2021
Teaching with Drones
March 17, 2021
Mobility & Place: Using human mobility patterns for identifying place similarity
March 17, 2021
Data Visualization with QGIS December 11, 2020
ArcGIS Story Maps in Education December 3, 2020
Shared Knowledge in a Democratic Society & Connected World November 18, 2020
Spatial Analysis with R, with a focus on the Social Sciences
November 16, 2020
ArcGIS Notebooks in Higher Education
November 12, 2020
Leading in a Crisis with Spatial Data: Mapping & the Pandemic October 2, 2020
Transitioning to the United States 2022 National Coordinate System without Getting Left Behind July 28, 2020
Map the Count: a University and State Agency Collaborative Project July 22, 2020
Locating Libraries in the Geospatial Education Community April 29, 2020
Data Management for GIS Projects February 26, 2020
Teaching Practical Spatial Data Science and Deep Learning (co-sponsored with Esri) February 26, 2020
Serious 3D Games for Disaster Resilience Spatial Thinking December 10, 2019
Map Projection as Mirror, Nostrum, Villian September 26, 2019
Exploring Geo-Text Data: Place Names, Place Relations, and Place Sentiments January 29, 2019
Using Professional Credentialing Exams within Academic GIS Contexts December 11, 2018
FICUS: a Spatiotemporal Risk Analysis System & Black Swan Theory September 26, 2018
Reimagining the History of GIS February 27, 2018
Measuring Spatio-Temporal Accessibility with ArcGIS September 28, 2017
Collaborative Problem Solving with CyberGIS and Geospatial Data Science – UCGIS 2017 Summer School February 17, 2017
Understanding and Engaging with the Work of the National Geospatial Advisory Committee (NGAC)  January 11, 2017
2017 CUAHSI Summer Institute: Collaborative problem solving at the National Water Center  November 30, 2016
GeoMentors: the Nationwide Effort to Improve K-12 GIS and Geography Education November 2, 2016
All You Need to Know about the New GIS&T Body of Knowledge October 26, 2016
Tangible Landscape: open source environment for geospatial learning, science, and community  August 31, 2016
Open Mapping for Resilience by Youth in Higher Education  April 21, 2016
Geographic Information: Organization, Access, and Use  April 6, 2016
National Flood Forecasting & Inundation Models March 9, 2016
Lessons Learned from an Intro GIS Course using ArcGIS Pro  February 10, 2016
Teaching CyberGIS in Universities  January 27, 2016
Spatial Analysis of Movement Patterns in Operating Rooms  December 3, 2015
Mapping Successful Youth and Community Projects November 20, 2015
Integrating FOSS into GIscience Research & Curricula  November 11, 2015
Chi-square is dead? Teaching Quantitative Methods in the Age of Big Data  October 28, 2015
Implementing ArcGIS Online in Higher Education April 29, 2015
Geographic Information | Citizen Science: reciprocal opportunities  April 1, 2015
Designing and Supporting Cross-Campus Geospatial Initiatives  March 3, 2015
De-Mystifying the World of Geospatial Certifications and Credentials January 14, 2015
The How and Why of Spatial Universities  December 2, 2014
Syracuse Community Geography: A Model for University Civic Engagement  November 5, 2014
Trends in GIScience Research and Teaching  October 15, 2014
Blended Learning in a GIScience Course: Lynda and Sketch-based Geospatial Learning Objects September 28, 2014