#AAG2018 THEME

Hazards, Geography, and GIScience

Schedule and ProgramThe combination of ever-growing vulnerable populations and the consequences of climate change presents a complex challenge for all of humanity. 2017 alone has seen several large scale natural disaster events, including catastrophic hurricanes Maria, Harvey, and Irma; deadly earthquakes in Mexico, China, and Italy; devastating wildfires in Chile, Portugal, the American West; and many others. Our 2018 Annual Meeting has us returning to New Orleans, Louisiana for the first time since Hurricane Katrina, the costliest natural disaster in history, which had devastating effects on the entire region and whose impacts can still be seen today.

Geographers are uniquely situated to address the myriad challenges presented by hazards due to the interdisciplinary nature of our discipline. Through climate change science, GIS, remote sensing, and, perhaps most importantly, the united interest in human dimensions of global change, geographers are well-equipped to research and apply their work in response to and in preparation for natural hazards. 

The 2018 AAG Annual Meeting Theme Hazards, Geography, and GIScience will approach these issues from multiple perspectives, with the goal of using the research and tools of Geography and GIScience to learn from past events and plan for future hazards.

Theme Committee

Tom Cova, Director of the Center for Natural and Technological Hazards and Professor, Department of Geography, University of Utah
Susan Cutter, Carolina Distinguished Professor and Director of the Hazards and Vulnerability Research Institute, University of South Carolina
Bandana Kar, Research Scientist, Urban Dynamics Institute, Oak Ridge National Laboratory
Brian Pompeii, Lecturer, Social Sciences Department, California Polytechnic State University
Eric Tate, Associate Professor, Department of Geographical and Sustainability Sciences, The University of Iowa
Deb Thomas, Professor, Department of Geography & Environmental Sciences, University of Colorado Denver


HIGHLIGHTED SESSIONS

The following sessions have been identified by the Theme Committee for special consideration.

Plenary

The Hurricane Harvey Response: Coast Guard and Geographic Perspectives
WED-053-11:50am
4/11/2018
11:50 AM - 1:10 PM
Napoleon B3, Sheraton 3rd Floor 

Hurricane Harvey was the costliest tropical cyclone on record, and flooded much of the Houston metropolitan area and surrounding regions in late August 2017. The storm displaced tens of thousands of people, shuttered and destroyed businesses, and caused over 100 fatalities in the United States. In the Hurricane’s immediate aftermath, first responders worked hand in hand with average citizens to help those in need.

This session will feature keynote remarks from Captain Andrew Sugimoto, Chief of Staff at the New Orleans-based 8th Coast Guard District, about the service’s response to Hurricane Harvey. Over 2,000 Coast Guard members were involved in 11,022 human rescues, and altogether it was one of the largest response efforts in Coast Guard history.

Former AAG President Susan Cutter of the University of South Carolina and Ron Hagelman of Texas State University, who has been studying Harvey’s aftermath on the ground in Texas, will serve as discussants and provide insights informed by their research and expertise. The session will be introduced by John Wertman, the AAG’s Senior Program Manager for Government Relations.

Special Sessions

Disaster Risk Reduction through Spatio-Temporal modeling

TUE-051-12:40pm
4/10/2018
12:40 PM / 2:20 PM
Napoleon B1, Sheraton 3rd Floor

The application of spatio-temporal data and modeling techniques to characterize the variability of hazard risk, vulnerability, and impacts is increasingly important in the pursuit of building resilient communities and infrastructures. This session includes papers that discuss the use of spatio-temporal data, geospatial techniques, and visualization methods to understand risk and impacts for hazard planning and response.

Drought Hazards

TUE-051-2:40pm
4/10/2018
2:40 PM / 4:20 PM
Napoleon B1, Sheraton 3rd Floor

The spatially diffuse and slow onset characteristics of drought hazards can make them a particularly difficult challenge for spatial analyses.  The papers in this session examine drought hazards, using a broad suite of geospatial analysis methods.

Spatio-Temporal Analysis of Flooding II: Coastal Flooding

TUE-051-4:40pm
4/10/2018
4:40 PM / 6:20 PM
Napoleon B1, Sheraton 3rd Floor

The impacts of coastal hazards continue to rise due to the increases of populations in at-risk areas and hazard intensity. This session includes papers that discuss the use of spatio-temporal analytics to characterize exposure and vulnerability to coastal flooding.

Spatio-Temporal Analysis of Flooding I

WED-051-8:00am
4/11/2018
8:00 AM / 9:40 AM
Napoleon B1, Sheraton 3rd Floor

This session profiles the use of geospatial analysis for the modeling, monitoring, and mapping of flood hazards.

Modeling Anthropogenic Hazards

WED-051-10:00am
4/11/2018
10:00 AM / 11:40 AM
Napoleon B1, Sheraton 3rd Floor

The growth of cities is contributing to an increase in industrial and pollution hazards, at times due to interactions with natural hazards. A collection of papers discussing the use of geospatial data and techniques to address anthropoegnic hazards is presented in this session.

Modeling Economic Impacts of Natural Hazards

WED-051-1:20pm
4/11/2018
1:20 PM / 3:00 PM
Napoleon B1, Sheraton 3rd Floor

Quantifying the economic impacts of hazards is crucial for understanding places at risk, prioritizing investments, and recovery action planning. Papers exploring the financial impacts and losses from different hazards are presented in this session.

Spatio-Temporal Analysis of Extreme Heat

THU-051-3:20pm
4/12/2018
3:20 PM / 5:00 PM
Napoleon B1, Sheraton 3rd Floor

Under climate change, heat hazards and associated the influence of increasing population density, mobility, and impervious surfaces are increasingly important. This session includes papers that focus on measurement, analysis, and solutions to extreme heat.

Spatio-Temporal Modeling of Urban Heat Islands and Air Pollution II

THU-051-5:20pm
4/12/2018
5:20 PM / 7:00 PM
Napoleon B1, Sheraton 3rd Floor

Disaster Informatics and Imagery Analysis II-Wildfire Hazards

FRI-051-8:00am
4/13/2018
8:00 AM / 9:40 AM
Napoleon B1, Sheraton 3rd Floor

The combination of climate change and population growth into fire-prone areas is fueling a growth in wildfire disaster.  The papers in this session profile rthe application of statistical and remote sensing analysis for detecting and modeling drought and wildfire hazards and risk.

Disaster Informatics and Imagery Analysis I

FRI-051-10:00am
4/13/2018
10:00 AM / 11:40 AM
Napoleon B1, Sheraton 3rd Floor

The combination of climate change and population growth into fire-prone areas is fueling a growth in wildfire disaster.  The papers in this session profile the application of statistical and remote sensing analysis for detecting and modeling drought and wildfire hazards and risk.

Citizen and Electronic Sensors to Reduce Disaster Risk

FRI-051-1:20pm
4/13/2018
1:20 PM / 3:00 PM
Napoleon B1, Sheraton 3rd Floor

The ubiquity of social computing has enabled the use of social networking site like Twitter for emergency response and recovery efforts. For instance, OpenStreetMap and Ushahidi were used during Haiti Earthquake (2010) to locate hot spots of crisis and to coordinate emergency response. Likewise, electronic sensors like smart phones are also used to gather health and location data for different purposes. This session presents studies that discuss applications of social media and electronic sensors for risk reduction.

Visualizing Hazards and Risk

FRI-051-3:20pm
4/13/2018
3:20 PM / 5:00 PM
Napoleon B1, Sheraton 3rd Floor

The ability to visualize risks and impacts can be important for public understanding.  The papers in this session explore the use of geovisualizaiton techniques for application to planning, preparedness, and communication of risk.

Intersections of Physical and Social Vulnerability

FRI-051-5:20pm
4/13/2018
5:20 PM / 7:00 PM
Napoleon B1, Sheraton 3rd Floor

Understanding human impacts from natural hazards requires understanding of both physical processes and human vulnerabilities.  This session includes papers that discuss geospatial modeling and tools to analyze intersections of physical and social dimensions.

Air Pollution Hazards

SAT-051-8:00am
4/14/2018
8:00 AM / 9:40 AM
Napoleon B1, Sheraton 3rd Floor

Despite advancements in technology and policy interventions, adverse impacts from air pollution continue to be substantial  This session profiles geospatial analyses of air pollution from gases and particulates.

Developing Spatio-Temporal Data Collection Methods in Disaster Risk Reduction

SAT-051-10:00am
4/14/2018
10:00 AM / 11:40 AM
Napoleon B1, Sheraton 3rd Floor

Both human and environmental sensors are playing an increasingly important role in characterizing hazard conditions and effects. This session explores the methods for the collection of spatiotemporal sensor data and their application toward disaster risk reduction. 

Please direct all theme-related queries to hazards@aag.org. Theme participants are encouraged to share via social media using the hashtags #AAG2018 and #Hazards.