Managing Disasters with High-Tech Imaging could Save Lives


“Improving disaster response is one of the goals of the Information Products Laboratory for Emergency Response, a partnership between Rochester Institute of Technology and the University at Buffalo. The collaboration will foster research to improve disaster mitigation planning, real-time response and recovery efforts, and to create potential business opportunities for industry.

“The incubator, funded with $600,000 from the National Science Foundation, will focus on technology, policy and business-development and bring together university researchers, private sector service and product providers, and emergency response decision makers.”

Post-Doctoral Research Assistant: CUNY-Environmental Crossroads Initiative

RFLogoThe CUNY Environmental Cross-Roads Initiative at City University of New York seeks a post doctoral assistant to collaborate on interdisciplinary synthesis research to understand the widespread alteration of hydrologic systems over local-to-regional domains focusing on the Northeast corridor of the United States over a 500-year period (1600 to 2100). The position requires primary research into this question using a variety of approaches including modeling, statistical and/or geospatial analysis. Work will emphasize the development of a ‘digital library’–an interdisciplinary geophysical, environmental, and social science spatial data infrastructure focused on the northeast United States region. Historical and contemporary datasets related to hydrology, geology, geomorphology, economics, sociology, ecology, etc., to inform this project. Scenarios 100-years into the future will also be executed.

The position will involve close interaction with a Synthesis Working Group drawn from several collaborating institutions to study regional watersheds and linked human-water processes, and to serve as a test-bed for ideas on how to optimally execute research synthesis in the water sciences.

This position is supported for a 2-year period by a research grant from the National Science Foundation (NSF) and will enable the successful candidate to work within the context of a major national effort to forward hydrological sciences under the aegis of the Consortium of Universities for the Advancement of Hydrological Science (CUAHSI).  Under the routine supervision of a Senior RF Research Associate or designee, performs simple to moderately complex research, investigation, or analytic activities as part of the research team; works under varying degrees of supervision depending on the scope and complexity of the project. Assists in planning meetings, conferences, web-based communication etc. Writes abstracts. Follows protocols for gathering data, coding data or information, constructing data bases using specified technology, analyzing data, maintaining data security, and archiving data as needed. Keeps accurate, well organized data records; performs the duties of lower level positions as needed; also performs other duties as assigned. Ability to make clear, accurate observation in writing and orally; to take direction and work as part of the team as well as independently; Ability to work cooperatively with other researchers and with students.

Salary:$52,000 to $58,000

Core Competencies/Qualifications

A recent PhD in Earth System Science, Hydrology, Biogeochemistry, Landscape Ecology, or related field, with extensive experience in GIS, data infrastructure development and management, computer programming and/or modeling. Experience in research project management is desired. Capacity to work in a large and diverse team at several professional levels (from students through senior academic and agency scientists). Applicants should attach: curriculum vitae; statement of research interests; contact information of three references.

GIS for Early Detection and Response to Infectious Disease

diseaseESRI has released a new GIS Best Practices e-book titled “Early Detection and Response to Infectious Disease.”

Successful understanding and response to infectious disease outbreaks depend greatly on the ability to consider the surrounding context. Disease spreads geographically, and interventions occur in relation to human, institutional, climatic, and other kinds of landscapes. Because GIS technology relates many kinds of data to geographic location, it excels in tracking not only disease spread but also laboratory specimen and medical supply whereabouts, hospital bed availability, testing facility proximity, vulnerable population locations, and medical personnel distribution. Built-in GIS analysis tools provide effective early warning systems and preparedness programs that generate meaningful information that public health officials need to make effective decisions—at the community, national, and global levels.

During an outbreak, GIS provides tools that speed the collection of accurate field data. Complex statistical and other analyses applied with GIS technology provide relevant information to support sound decisions. GIS analysis can, for example, locate a potential disease hot spot and calculate a nearby hospital’s ability to handle the expected increase in service demand if an outbreak should occur.

Application stories in this new e-book include:

  • GIS Application for Early Detection Tracks Hospital-Reported Symptoms
  • Spatial Analysis Gives Insight into Source of Legionnaires’ Disease
  • GIS Empowers Emergency Response and Public Health Awareness
  • Health and Human Services Tracks Stockpile Shipments on the Web
  • Tracking SARS in China With GIS
  • Consolidation of Information Makes Vector Control Data
  • Accessible and Reduces Costs in New Zealand
  • Down-to-Earth Approach Jumpstarts GIS for Dengue Outbreak

Read it now