Assessing Floodplain Forests: Using Flow Modeling and Remote Sensing to Determine the Best Places for Conservation

Natural Areas Journal, Volume 30, Number 1 – January 2010

Mark G. Anderson, Charles E. Ferree, Arlene P. Olivero, and Feng Zhao

“Mature and diverse floodplain forests are among the world’s most diminished ecosystems and conservationists need a rapid method to identify the best remaining examples of these systems. Because large rivers and their dynamics bind the floodplain together, the method must go beyond simple inventory of remnant patches to evaluate flood processes and identify constraints in the surrounding watersheds. We develop such a method for a three million hectare watershed in New England using a combination of data types to evaluate key attributes of floodplain systems. Riparian and floodplain communities were modeled using a GIS analysis of river valley topography and riverine processes, and floodplain forest occurrences were identified in a classification and regression (CART) analysis. Current flooding was verified using overlays of remotely sensed imagery of spring and fall water levels. We evaluated the intactness of the floodplain occurrences using ratios of upstream dam storage to annual runoff, the length of the connected stream network, and the naturalness of surrounding land cover. Field-assigned ranks of forest quality were correlated with the occurrence size, percent verified flooding, and percent natural cover. Predicted quality ranks reinforced the importance of these factors. Results indicate that the twenty top-ranking streams collectively contain 75 high quality areas suitable for floodplain forest restoration and conservation. Independent verification of these areas strongly corroborated our results.”

Marcus Z. Rouhani, Airport GIS Program Manager for the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration to Keynote ULA

URISA is pleased to announce that Marcus Z. Rouhani, Airport GIS Program Manager for the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration, will provide the  Keynote Address at this year’s URISA Leadership Academy (ULA). The ULA will be presented in Baltimore, Maryland, June 14-18, 2010.

The success of any GIS program is largely tied to the capabilities of its leader.  Strong leadership is necessary to establish a solid GIS program, operate efficiently and effectively, coordinate participants, adapt to change, and move a program forward.  Leadership, however, is a skill that must be developed. The URISA Leadership Academy was established to meet this important need.  At the Academy, participants learn key GIS leadership and management factors and techniques, successful team development, organizational capacity building, program investment and justification, GIS politics, change management, situation assessment, and problem solving.  The environment further provides for productive collaboration and networking.

  • “I’ve been working in the GIS field for 15 years and this was, by far, the most valuable and comprehensive training I have received. No matter how much you think you know about GIS management, you will learn more than you ever thought possible.” – Scott A Weisman, GISP, GIS Technical Services Manager, Tallahassee Leon County GIS – ULA Graduate, December 2009
  • “The ULA provided a rare moment to bring some of the top leaders in the GIS field together to extend their experience with folks that truly believe in GIS and want to make a difference locally, regionally and maybe nationally in the future.  The broad knowledge base allowed the ULA to touch on every skill that is needed to make us leaders in our respective communities.” – Chris Cantrell, GIS Coordinator, Midland County, Michigan  ULA Graduate, December 2009

The entire faculty of the ULA is comprised of Certified GIS Professionals (GISPs) with proven experience leading both public and private sector organizations of all types and sizes. Make plans to attend the ULA today. Participation is limited.

For details and registration information, visit

[Source: URISA press release]

A Multi-Varient Non-Statistical Model For Applied Spatial Analysis

Paper presented at the annual meeting of the ASC Annual Meeting, Philadelphia, PA, Nov 04, 2009

Harvey Morley

“Many techniques associated with spatial analysis are still in their infancy. Others have existed for centuries. In the sixth century B.C. the Sun Zi Bing Fa, a military treatise on the conduct of war was written by Chinese general Sun Tzu. In it he specifically identifies the need to review and carefully analyze the variables associated with six types of terrain prior to launching an offensive. On a more contemporary basis public health map based spatial analysis was used in the early 19th century, prior to the allocation of scarce resources (including law enforcement), to identify vectors associated with a cholera outbreak, prior to allocating resources for its containment. This paper explores the use of non statistical spatial mapping as tool for developing planning models for law enforcement resource allocation.”

VeGIS – Tool for the Connectivity between Traffic Models and Geographic Information Systems

REAL CORP 2010 Proceedings/Tagungsband, Vienna, 18-20 May 2010

Steve Grössl, Ursula Witzmann

“VeGIS develops concepts and technical solutions for the synchronization of data between traffic models and geographical information systems (GIS).

“Test routines contribute to the quality improvement of traffic-related data concerning traffic information systems as well as to traffic development plans and subsequently developed technical plans. The project generates a basis for a continually expandable and better maintainable set of data relating to transport and mobility.”