A Look at Educational Attainment in the United States, Live on C-SPAN’s “Washington Journal” – February 24, 2012

On Friday, Feb. 24th, 2012 from 9:15 to 10:00 a.m., Kurt Bauman, chief of the U.S. Census Education and Social Stratification Branch, will appear live on C-SPAN’s “Washington Journal” to discuss today’s release of several educational attainment reports. His presentation will include a rich mix of statistical visualizations and discussion, including a public call-in segment. This is part of a weekly Friday series called “America by the Numbers” that features the federal statistical agencies.

You are invited to tune in and watch the program. C-SPAN is available live through the Internet at .
For more information and to view the presentation graphs, please visit the following link, which will be live Friday morning (Feb. 24, 2012): http://www.census.gov/newsroom/cspan/educ/index.html

UConn Presentations at AAG 2012 Annual Meeting

Multiple faculty and graduate students from the University of Connecticut’s Department of Geography and the University of Connecticut School of Social Work will be presenting their research at the Association of American Geographers (AAG) Annual Meeting which takes place in New York City from February 24-28, 2012. This week long conference includes over 7,000 geographers from around the globe.

Included below are the poster and presentation topics that will be presented by faculty and graduate students from the University of Connecticut. If you are attending the AAG conference be sure to attend these sessions!

University of Connecticut Presentations Include:

Suburban Typologies and Residential Foreclosures in Phoenix, Arizona

scheduled on Friday, 2/24/2012 at 10:00 AM.
Carol Atkinson-Palombo – University of Connecticut
Brandon Cramer – University of Connecticut

Abstract: The Phoenix metropolitan area in Arizona has been among the
fastest-growing places in the United States over the past 25 years, due in part to Rustbelt-to-Sunbelt migration. As with other rapidly-growing places, the housing market has been hard hit by the foreclosure market crisis and ensuing credit crunch that followed a boom in 2005-2006.  This paper uses land use data from 2005 and census data from 2000 and 2010 to investigate changes that occurred in neighborhoods across this Phoenix metropolitan area over this decade that captured a boom-and-bust cycle in the real estate markets. A typology of neighborhoods in the Phoenix metropolitan area was created from the census and land use data in order
to understand how neighborhood dynamics affected foreclosure rates.
Overall, our analysis indicates that the rates of foreclosure tend to be much higher in Phoenix neighborhoods where the population is predominately Hispanic, Black, and of lower socioeconomic status. Many new lower middle-class subdevelopments also had elevated rates of foreclosure. These results clearly show that the risk of foreclosure for homeowners in Phoenix was dependent on socioeconomic status, ethnicity, and location of residence.

Reconciling the Seemingly Contradictory Story of Declining Migration and Technologically-Based Hypermobility

scheduled on Saturday, 2/25/2012 at 16:40 PM.
Thomas Cooke – University of Connecticut

Internal migration rates in the United States have dropped by roughly one-half over the last quarter century.  A limited body of research suggests that beyond the effects of demographic and economic factors that there has been a more fundamental transformation in migration rates. The source of this shift to secular rootedness has yet to be identified. This research explores several more speculative hypotheses concerning the migration decline and finds that the emergence of information and communication technologies (ICTs) may be an important part of the increase in immobility. Preliminary analysis of individual data from the Panel Study of Income Dynamcs suggest that individuals who use ICTs are less likely to move.

Intelligent Areal Interpolation using Quantile Regression

scheduled on Saturday, 2/25/2012 at 10:00 AM.

Robert G. Cromley, Ph.D. – University of Connecticut
Dean M. Hanink, Ph.D. – University of Connecticut
George C. Bentley, M.A. – University of Connecticut

Areal interpolation has been developed to provide attribute estimates whenever data compilation or an analysis requires a change in the measurement support.  Over time numerous approaches have been proposed to solve the problem of areal interpolation.  Quantile regression is used in this study as the basis of the areal interpolator because it provides estimates conditioned on local parameters rather than global ones.  An empirical case study is provided set in northern New England.  The ancillary data used in the regression model is land cover data, provided by NOAA,with a resolution of 30×30 meters.  The utility of quantile regression as an intelligent areal interpolation method is evaluated against simple averages, areal weighting, dasymetric interpolation, and ordinary least squares (OLS) regression methods.  It is shown that dasymetric interpolation is a special case of quantile regression interpolation and that quantile regression based interpolators produce more accurate results.

The Future of Historical U.S. Census Data: Charting the Course of the New NHGIS

scheduled on Sunday, 2/26/2012, from 8:00 AM – 9:40 AM

Jonathan Schroeder – University of Minnesota
Jonathan Schroeder – University of Minnesota
David Van Riper – University of Minnesota – Twin Cities
Jonathan Schroeder – University of Minnesota
Christopher Boone – Arizona State University
Robert G. Cromley – University Of Connecticut
Lisa Jordan – Florida State University
Peter Nelson – Middlebury College

Session Description:
Since 2006, the National Historical Geographic Information System (http://www.nhgis.org) has provided free online access to aggregate statistics and GIS boundary files for U.S. censuses from 1790 through 2000. Over 12,000 registered users have together completed over 58,000 unique data extracts. In the meantime, the Minnesota Population Center has undertaken several major efforts to enhance the system: improving the web interface with a complete redesign; adding data from the 2010 Census, American Community Survey and other sources; updating historical boundary files to align with improved 2008 Census TIGER/Line data; producing generalized boundary files with reduced detail and file size; and constructing time series of spatially and conceptually integrated data. A continual rollout of these new products and features is already underway, having begun with a new NHGIS website in October 2011.

In this session, panelists from the Minnesota Population Center will present an overview of new and planned NHGIS features. Additional panelists—experienced users of the NHGIS site—will provide a critical assessment of the new site and suggest priorities for future work. We will then open the discussion to consider specific development alternatives, solicit new ideas, and identify the most pressing needs for geographic researchers and educators.

Evaluation of SEER*DMS Geocoding System

scheduled on Friday, 2/24/2012 at 16:40 PM.

Curtis J Denton – University of Connecticut
Jeffery P. Osleeb, PhD. – University of Connecticut
Lloyd Mueller, PhD. – Connecticut Department of Public Health
Karyn Backus – Connecticut Department of Public Health

The Surveillance, Epidemiology, and End Results (SEER) Program of the National Cancer Institute (NCI) is an authoritative source of information on cancer incidence and survival in the United States. The SEER Program registries routinely collect data on patient demographics, primary tumor site, tumor morphology and stage at diagnosis, first course of treatment, and follow-up for vital status. The accuracy of a geocoding system is an important factor in any address level research.  This project evaluated the geocoding methods used by the (SEER) program. There has been little research evaluating the geocoding completeness and quality associated with the enhancements of the geocoding process of SEER* version 8 compared to the previous version.

This project evaluated the quality of geocoding under SEER*(v8) relative to SEER* version 7 and relative to a Connecticut Gold Standard system created by the Connecticut Department of Public Health.  An outcome of the project was a list of suggestions for improving the geocoding process.  The research identified coding discrepancies in the SEER*DMS geocoding system such as local street and place naming conventions, recent housing growth and data quality limitations that affected the accuracy of the results in SEER*DMS(v7).  Furthermore, it was found that SEER*(v8) took leniencies in address matching that caused discrepancies.  Finally, a methodology for interactive geocoding was developed to increase geocoding accuracy.

The evaluation used all diagnosed cases from the Connecticut Tumor Registry (CTR) between 2007 and 2009 and registered in the CTR as of April, 2010, with a study population of 42,032 cases.

Mapping the Morgan: Maritime Memory Preserved

scheduled on Sunday, 2/26/2012 at 12:40 PM.

Jeffrey J Dunn – University of Connecticut
Jason Hine – Mystic Seaport

The Mystic Seaport Museum is home to the Charles W. Morgan, the last wooden whaleship in the world. The Morgan is currently under restoration and is scheduled for a 38th voyage in 2014.  The museum also holds the Charles W. Morgan’s numerous ship logs with daily entries that include positional information as well as rich attribute information.  Information from these log entries contain attribute information about the weather, number of species sighted, number of species caught, and communications with other vessels.

This poster documents how these information sources were extracted and mapped using a combination of ArcGIS tools, Google Maps, and other techniques to develop an online map mash-up.  Each log entry is accessible by clicking on the ship icon and viewing the resulting pop up balloon.  Currently, the map is a prototype and the finished product will include relevant links to other historical documents, images, and audio from the pop up balloons.  Beyond a visual display of the process and resulting map, this poster outlines experienced and expected challenges, as well as future objectives.  The potential of such an interactive map in discussing and educating individuals about spatial, environmental, and historical topics is great and will provide the Charles W. Morgan a new digital platform to tell its story.

Geographic determinants of American military basing in the Pacific

scheduled on Sunday, 2/26/2012 at 8:00 AM.

Kevin Evringham – University of Connecticut

The past decade has seen significant changes in the security environment of East Asia by nation states not allied with the United States.  The current base structure of American military units in the Pacific does not adequately facilitate the security and power projection needs demanded by these changes in support of American security commitments to the region.  Specifically, domestic political and military concerns in both the United States and Japan have been increasing wary of this new security environment shedding new light on the importance of the United States-Japanese security agreement.  Unfortunately, current basing by United States military units in Okinawa, Japan places strain on this alliance when the need for clear and joint cooperation on the defense of Japan is paramount.  Through an examination of the existing plans for unit movements both within Okinawa and to Guam this paper instead argues for the realignment of a majority of the III Marine Expeditionary Unit to the main islands of Japan.  These actions, available for proposal during the next expected round of Base Realignments in 2014 by the Department of Defense, represents the clearest long term solution in support United States strategic objectives and Japanese self-defense interests.

The Right to the City Alliance: Challenging the Constraints of Contemporary Organizing

scheduled on Sunday, 2/26/2012 at 10:00 AM.

Robert Fisher – University of Connecticut

This paper on the Right to the City Alliance focuses on how the Alliance and its member organizations challenge many of the constraints of contemporary community organizing.  That said, it’s not clear how well the does with a number of critical challenges, including expanding beyond the local.  In terms of vision and analysis the Alliance and its members incorporate both the local and beyond.  But in terms of its organizational scale, for example, its ability to coordinate action beyond the local, it still seems a work in progress.  To develop these concepts, we compare RTTC Alliance organizing to more moderated versions (community building/capacity building) as well as to ACORN, which did not do some things as well as the RTTC Alliance (vision of change, social movement orientation) but did some things much better (national organization/enlarged organizational scale).

Using Social Paths in Transit Service Area Analysis: Evidence from America’s Light Rail Systems

scheduled on Saturday, 2/25/2012 at 12:40 PM.

Patrick Gallagher – University of Connecticut

Pedestrian accessibility remains a much studied topic in transportation literature. Researchers have noted the importance of calculating accurate transit service areas for the purposes of transit ridership projections. Service area analysis has evolved from a simple Euclidean distance measure into more complex, network based approaches. Network based methods have been able to better model the pedestrian environment. However, they only take formal pedestrian paths such as roads and sidewalks into consideration. There is a growing body of literature that examines how pedestrians act within both the formal and informal pedestrian environment. Social paths are informal paths that form from significant footfall over grassy areas. Often times they are formed in response to barriers and other inadequacies in the formal pedestrian environment. This study presents evidence that social paths can help improve the accuracy of transit service area analysis by more realistically modeling both the formal and informal aspects of the pedestrian environment. In addition, social paths can prove to be invaluable in determining the best locations for future pedestrian improvement projects.

Exploring the spatiotemporal trends of obesity-related “tweets” using topic modeling and Geographic Information Science

scheduled on Monday, 2/27/2012 at 8:00 AM.

Debarchana (Debs) Ghosh* – University of Connecticut
Rajarshi Guha – National Institute of Health

Social networking sites like Twitter.com often provide us with large conversational datasets on public-health related topics. The conversations or the “tweets” are also georeferrenced (specific location of the user) and time stamped (specific time/day the tweets are posted by the user). However, public-health related topics are difficult to identify from such large datasets. Even more challenging is the visualization and analysis of the spatiotemporal patterns encoded in tweets. This study, first examines how to model and discover public-health related themes in tweets and second, visualization and analysis of the spatiotemoral patterns of these themes. Obesity is chosen as a test theme to demonstrate the effectiveness of topic modeling using LDA (Latent Dirichlet Allocation) and spatiotemporal analysis using GIS techniques. The dataset is a representative dataset from the United States that is constructed from obesity-related queries such as, ‘food deserts’, ‘high fructose corn syrup’, ‘fast foods’, ‘childhood obesity’, ‘farmer’s market, ‘physical activity’, etc. We anticipate the identification of dominant obesity-related themes, which will help health researchers and practitioners to better understand the level of awareness and concern among a large population for the growing epidemic of obesity in the United States. The spatiotemporal analysis will also show diffusion patterns of a particular theme or a cluster of themes between rural and urban areas, cities and suburbs, northern and southern states, and between coasts and inland states. In the conclusion we will also discuss some of the research-related challenges and issues of using such conversational datasets from social networking sites.

Author Meets Her Critics: Kristina Gibson’s Street Kids, Homeless Youth, Outreach and Policing New York’s Streets

scheduled on Sunday, 2/26/2012, from 12:40 PM – 2:20 PM

Lorraine Dowler – Penn State University
Lorraine Dowler – Penn State University
Lorraine Dowler – Penn State University
Kate Swanson
Don Mitchell – Syracuse University
Stuart C. Aitken – San Diego State University
Kristina Gibson – University Of Connecticut

Session Description:
“Street outreach workers comb public places such as parks, vacant lots, and abandoned waterfronts to search for young people who are living out in public spaces, if not always in the public eye. Street Kids opens a window to the largely hidden world of street youth, drawing on their detailed and compelling narratives to give new insight into the experiences of youth homelessness and youth outreach. Kristina Gibson argues that the enforcement of quality of life ordinances in New York City has spurred hyper-mobility amongst the city’s street youth population and has serious implications for social work with homeless youth. Youth in motion have become socially invisible and marginalized from public spaces where social workers traditionally contact them, jeopardizing their access to the already limited opportunities to escape street life. The culmination of a multi-year ethnographic investigation into the lives of street outreach workers and ‘their kids’ on the streets of New York City, Street Kids illustrates the critical role that public space regulations and policing play in shaping the experience of youth homelessness and the effectiveness of street outreach.”

Meteorological and surficial influences on dust mobilization observed at Mesquite Playa, Mojave Desert

scheduled on Monday, 2/27/2012 at 14:40 PM.

John Andrew Jolly-Ballantine, Ph.D. – University of Connecticut
James Stephen King, Ph.D. – University of Oxford, UK

Atmospheric dust in dryland regions of the American West is responsible for hazards to human health and infrastructure. The vulnerability of dryland surfaces to erosion is dependent on antecedent precipitation, surface sediments, and history of disturbance. We focused our study of dust emissions on the Mesquite Playa on the California/Nevada border to the southwest of Las Vegas, NV because this playa is a source of elevated atmospheric particulate levels in Las Vegas. We used a combination of measurements from field campaigns and existing meteorological records to identify statistical relationships between meteorological conditions, surface conditions, and dust emissions. Field data included images from two semi-permanent cameras set to take images of dust during the period from January, 2008 to May, 2010. We also took periodic measurements of the strength of surface sediments and depth to moisture. The final field measurements involved use of the Pi-SWERL portable wind tunnel to determine threshold velocity for mobilizing dust as well as weight of material mobilized under known conditions. We obtained records of wind speed and precipitation from nearby meteorological stations. Correlations between surface measurements, meteorological measurements, and observed dust events found that more frequent and intense dust events occur during the spring months in and that these events were not associated with wind parameters. Based on these surface measurements and correlations, it is likely that precipitation influences the vulnerability of the surface by stimulating the formation of protective crusts which then break down over a period of months.

The Determinants of Geographical Concentration of Manufacturing Industries in China

scheduled on Friday, 2/24/2012 at 12:40 PM.

Zhiqiang Liu – University of Connecticut

The rapid industrialization and rising social and economic prosperity of China has drawn attention of scholars all over the world. Based on China’s census and industrial survey data, this paper aims to explore  the  determinants  of  geographical  concentration  of manufacturing  activities  at  the county level, which has not be fully explored yet. To achieve this goal, traditional agglomeration
economy  factors,  as  well  as  a  series  of  control  variables,  including  natural  advantage,  local  and foreign  markets,  and  economic  policies,  are  taken  into  account.  The  results  of  OLS  and  spatial error  models  show  that  both  localization  and  urbanization  economies  positively  contribute  to geographical  concentration  of  manufacturing  activities.  In  addition,  local  and  foreign  demands also  imply  positive  effects  on  location  of  manufacturing  industries.  However,  manufacturing industries  in  China  seem  to  be  able  to  escape  the  constraint  of  natural  advantage  in  favor  of other  factors.  Finally, although  some  signs  indicating  the  impact  of  local  economic  policies,  the result on this issue is not clear.

Past and Projected NE US Summer Climate

scheduled on Monday, 2/27/2012 at 14:40 PM.

Cary Lynch – University of Connecticut

Anthropogenically induced climate change is expected to accelerate in the coming decades and understanding how these changes will influence regional scale processes is essential.  To address the issue of global climate change at the regional scale, this study analyzes 20th century and projected 21st century changes in summertime climate for the Northeastern region of the United States (NE US).  The NE US is located in a region dominated by mid-latitude westerlies with transient cyclonic and frontal systems.  In addition, the region is influenced by land-atmospheric interactions and coastal processes.  This study examines 20th century gridded observations and reanalysis output as well as climate model SRESA2 projections from two coupled global climate models, CCSM3 and GFDL-CM2.1, which were selected due to their range in projected precipitation.  Gridded observations of precipitation and surface temperature across the NE US show distinct regional variation resulting from the complex topography and coastal influences. For projected changes, models show agreement on trends in summer temperatures, but summer precipitation and related thermodynamic fields show considerable inter-model variability. Related dynamic and thermodynamic fields from reanalysis output and models are examined to explore the underlying causes of this variability.

Food, Faith, and the Everyday Struggle for Black Urban Community

scheduled on Friday, 2/24/2012 at 8:00 AM.

Priscilla McCutcheon – University of Connecticut

Black religious spaces play important and sometimes contested roles in black urban neighborhoods.  While they serve as sites of worship, they often have multiple functions, such as community centers and organizing sites for community protests.  To varying degrees, some black churches seek to provide services to changing and decaying neighborhoods.  The purpose of this research paper is to interrogate the daily actions of black volunteers at one black church’s emergency food program.  This paper utilizes archival and textual research, extensive participant observation, and semi-structured open-ended interviews with emergency food program volunteers.  Wheat Street Baptist Church is located on Auburn Avenue in Atlanta Georgia, a neighborhood whose prominence is steeped in the Civil Rights Movement.  While past history of racial struggles and progress is memorialized in the landscape through the Martin Luther King, Jr. National Historic Site, emergency food program volunteers seek to redefine their neighborhood as one with past prominence, but similarly a bright, yet distinct future.  Volunteers acknowledge that the neighborhood has changed over the years, suffering a similar fate of many black urban neighborhoods.  In this vein, Wheat Street volunteers are doing more than providing two meals per week to hungry people.  Instead, they are engaged in place making, using both food and faith along with a vivid place memory to define a new Auburn Avenue.  Through everyday talk, volunteers work to recreate a feeling of home for people coming in to be served.  Ultimately, volunteers hope for a future neighborhood that has affordable housing for all.

River Terraces and Incision in Southern New England

scheduled on Saturday, 2/25/2012 at 16:40 PM.

William Ouimet – University of Connecticut

Terraces are ubiquitous features in the river and stream valleys of New England that attest to the various climatic and geomorphic processes driving landscape evolution in the northern Appalachian region.  The most common type of terraces along these rivers are alluvial fill and cut-fill terraces.  Less frequently, in the higher relief portions of the landscape, bedrock strath terraces sit perched above active river valleys. Despite their abundance in the New England landscape, and even though they have been appreciated by geologists and geographers since the time of William Morris Davis over 100 years ago, most of these terraces have not been extensively studied.  Here, I present a preliminary analysis of a subset of these terraces in southern New England.  High fill terraces (up to 10-15 m above modern river levels) along the Connecticut River and its major tributaries dissecting the Berkshires and Western Connecticut Highlands (Deerfield, Westfield and Farmington Rivers), as well the Housatonic River, reflect incision into higher, glacial meltwater terraces. These terraces highlight the timing and style of post-glacial incision throughout the Holocene related to base-level controls on these river systems and post-glacial isostatic rebound.  More recently, sediment aggradation and subsequent incision in river valleys where humans have constructed and abandoned mill-ponds has led to the formation of low fill terraces in some valleys (<1-2 m above modern river levels), and low terraces along some upland, lower order streams can be tied to land clearing from the 18th to early 20th century.

Climatic Vulnerability: Sea Level Rise and Communities on Martha’s Vineyard

scheduled on Saturday, 2/25/2012 at 12:40 PM.

Jonathan Pollak – University of Connecticut

This poster investigates the spatial distribution of vulnerability on Martha’s Vineyard, an island of approximately 90 square miles in size which is located less than 5 miles from Woods hole, Massachusetts.  This research uses GIS to analyze the impacts of changing global climatic variables on the island’s socio-demographic, cultural, and physical landscapes.  The island has a long history of commercial fishing, but more lately caters to affluent seasonal tourists.  With both economic activities heavily reliant upon the ocean as a resource, sea level rise poses a particularly important risk that could result in loss of land, damage to infrastructure, as well degradation of economic opportunity.

Supermarkets, Small Grocers & Convenience Stores: A Critical Geography of the Urban Food Retail Environment

scheduled on Friday, 2/24/2012 at 8:00 AM.

C. Patrick Heidkamp – Southern Connecticut State University
Scott E. Russell – University of Connecticut

Discussions of urban food deserts have reached a new level of mainstream media and public attention. The means by which cities “solve” food deserts has been dominated by a state/corporate hegemony united in promoting the supermarket as the pinnacle of answers to the lack of access to healthy and affordable foods that plague residents of food desert neighborhoods. Alternative to the supermarket solution, academics and activists alike have taken the diametrically opposite position of the need for local alternative food systems—centered on urban food production schemes and reinvigorated consumer-producer relationships (e.g., farmers markets)—to address the injustice and lack of sustainability integral to the global-industrial food system. There is, however, an emerging body of research that not only questions the ability of alternative food systems to challenge the dominant supermarket model of urban food provision but also seeks to contribute significantly to alleviating urban food desert conditions. In this paper, we argue that urban food systems may instead be built around a diverse array of small- and medium-sized grocery stores, which are often better integrated into the social infrastructure of the cities and neighborhoods they serve.  By reflecting on previous empirical studies of the food systems of two Connecticut cities—the long-standing urban food production system of Hartford and the retail food environment of New Haven—we acknowledge their limitations while highlighting the elements of an alternative market structure based on multiple, independent and complementary retail sources.

Public hearings and environmental impact assessments in Russia

scheduled on Monday, 2/27/2012 at 14:40 PM.

Nathaniel Trumbull – University of Connecticut

Procedures for public hearings and environmental impact assessments present difficulties to stakeholders, and are often implemented only nominally.  Adherence to international environmental frameworks and best management practices continue to face serious challenges.  Environmental non-government organization activity often play only marginal roles in influencing decision-making.

Towards automatic search of geospatial features for disaster and emergency management

scheduled on Tuesday, 2/28/2012 at 8:00 AM.

Chuanrong Zhang – University of Connecticut, Department of Geography and Center for Environmental Sciences and Engineering
Tian Zhao – Department of Computer Science, University of Wisconsin
Weidong Li – University of Connecticut, Department of Geography

Although the fast development of OGC (Open Geospatial Consortium) WFS (Web Feature Service) technologies has undoubtedly improved the sharing and synchronization of feature-level geospatial information across diverse resources, literature shows that there are still apparent limitations in the current implementation of OGC WFSs. Currently, the implementation of OGC WFSs only emphasizes syntactic data interoperability via standard interfaces and cannot resolve semantic heterogeneity problems in geospatial data sharing. To help emergency responders and disaster managers find new ways of efficiently searching for needed geospatial information at the feature level, this paper aims to propose a framework for automatic search of geospatial features using Geospatial Semantic Web technologies and natural language interfaces.Wefocus on two major tasks: (1) intelligent geospatial feature retrieval using Geospatial Semantic Web technologies; (2) a natural language interface to a geospatial knowledge base and web feature services over the Semantic Web. Based on the proposed framework we implemented a prototype. Results show that it is practical to directly discover desirable geospatial features from multiple semantically heterogeneous sources using Geospatial Semantic Web technologies and natural language interfaces.

NEARC Spring Conference Call for Papers – Due March 23, 2012

The NEARC Spring Conference will take place Tuesday, May 22 at the Smith College Campus Center in Northampton, MA. If you have an exciting project, GIS resource, or other spatial-focused research that you are ready to present, then consider submitting a proposal to participate at the NEARC Spring Conference. 
Proposals  are due by March 23, 2012!   
To view an outline of the schedule of the day and to submit your proposal visit: http://www.northeastarc.org/html/springnearc.shtml
There are many different ways that you can participate in this fun and dynamic event!
  • Extended Talk (45-60 Mins.)          
  • Panel (45-60 Mins.)
  • Standard Talk (20-30 Mins.)                     
  • Workshop (60 Mins.)
  • Lightning Talk (5 Mins.)
  • Video Poster
  • Poster

 Other Features of the NEARC Spring Conference include Lightning Karaoke, the Pub Social and more!
Mark Your Calendars!
The NEARC Spring Conference will be held on May 22, 2012 at Smith College Campus Center in Northampton, MA. We hope to see you there!

New York State GIS Conference – May 15-16, 2012

Register today for the 2012 NYS GIS Conference!
May 15-16, 2012
Oncenter Complex in Syracuse, NY

Jeff Howe, who coined the term “crowdsourcing,” will be our keynote speaker for the 2012 conference! Jeff is a professor of journalism at Northeastern University and a former Nieman Fellow at Harvard University. He previously worked as a contributing editor at Wired Magazine, where he published “The Rise of Crowdsourcing” in June 2006. He has continued to cover the phenomenon in his blog crowdsourcing.com, and in August 2008 published Crowdsourcing: Why the Power of the Crowd is Driving the Future of Business. For more information on Jeff, visit here!
 NYS GIS Conference 2012 has a new format!
  • Exciting workshops and seminars to choose from
    These workshops and seminars are included in your conference registration and are a great way to get an in-depth look at important emerging topics.  Find out where your field is heading; don’t miss out!
  • Special Spatial Spotlights
    Learn how GIS technology applications are being used in exciting ways!
  • New Showcases
    We’re soliciting apps from the general public and inviting exhibitors to join the zoo!
    • App Garden – a designated space on the exhibitor floor to showcase mobile, web-based, and/or desktop applications.
    • Technology Petting Zoo – a designated space on the exhibitor floor to showcase the latest and greatest hardware, gadgets, and technology developed and distributed by exhibiting companies.
Crowdsourcing, smartphones, cloud computing…if it’s a hot topic in the industry, we’ll be talking about it!  Register for this exciting conference at www.esf.edu/nysgisconf/2012/register.htm.

This conference was brought to our attention from a posting on the Connecticut GIS User to User Network Listserv. To keep current on the latest GIS news, employment opportunities, conferences, and more subscribe to the Connecticut GIS User to User Network Listserv

Media Advisory — Census Bureau Webinar to Highlight Education Data February 23, 2012

The U.S. Census Bureau will hold a webinar news conference to release five education-related statistical products based on the Current Population Survey, American Community Survey and Survey of Income and Program Participation.

The webinar will highlight the latest findings on adult educational attainment, attainment levels and the likelihood of being unemployed, the geographic distribution of people who hold degrees in science and engineering and how earnings are tied to degree level, field of study and mode of high school completion.
The data sets being released are as follows:

  • Educational Attainment in the United States: 2011 (Source: Current Population Survey)
  • What It’s Worth: Field of Training and Economic Status in 2009 (Source: Survey of Income and Program Participation)
  • Educational Attainment in the United States: 2009 (Source: American Community Survey and Current Population Survey)
  • Field of Bachelor’s Degree in the United States: 2009 (Source: American Community Survey)
  • Characteristics of GED Program Participants (Source: American Community Survey, Current Population Survey and Survey of Income and Program Participation)

The news conference will consist of a simultaneous audio conference and online presentation. Information on accessing the online presentation is provided below. Reporters will be able to ask questions once the presentation is complete. We suggest reporters log in and call in early.

When: Thursday, Feb. 23, 2012; 2 p.m. (EST)

Nancy Potok, Associate Director for Demographic Programs
Kurt Bauman, chief, Education and Social Stratification Branch — Social,
Economic and Housing Statistics Division

Audio conference — access information
Toll free number: 888-790-3288
Passcode: CENSUS
Note: Stay on the line until operator asks for the passcode. Do not key in passcode.

Online presentation — access information
Please login early, as some setup is required.

URL: <https://www.mymeetings.com/nc/join/>
Conference/meeting number: PW1440288
Conference/meeting passcode: CENSUS
If closed captioning is required: <http://livewrite.nccsite.com/view/cb0223>

The MetroMonitor


The Brookings Institution’s MetroMonitor is a great resource for economic performance at the scale of the metropolitan area. It contains data that tracks economic performance from 1993 to the end of 2011 spanning the entire globe (click here to read a summary of economic change from 2010-2011). The data is organized into the following categories: Overall Rankings, Income Growth, Employment Growth, and Industrial Structure. In addition to an interactive map (see screenshot below), the MetroMonitor also contains summary reports for each respective metro area that shows a breakdown of the aforementioned categories (for example, click here to see the report for Hartford, CT).

For an explanation of the importance of the scale of the metropolitan area in the global economy, watch the video above. The video explains three major findings regarding Brookings’ research regarding metro areas and the global economy: 1. The global economy is led by metro areas, 2. The Great Recession accelerated a shift in the metro map, and 3. The macro and metro scale are important for economic growth. Also, check out this article by Alan Berube, Senior Fellow and Research Director at Brookings. Berube discusses why local economic growth is important given recent global events, like the Great Recession and Arab Spring, and how local economic growth can be the catalyst for a sustained economic recovery. For more regarding economic recovery, visit our earlier post regarding the MetroMonitor.

Residential Rain Garden Training Course from CLEAR

A practical 1.5 day short course for
landscapers, designers, maintenance care providers and volunteers  
rain garden drawing
Have you been hearing the buzz about rain gardens? Come to this workshop to learn what they are, how they work, and how to install them. This 1.5 day workshop will start with a classroom session, then conclude with an actual installation of a rain garden. Instructors are from the University of Connecticut NEMO program and the University of Rhode Island Outreach Center.
Thursday, March 29 (classroom)  8:30 am – 3:00 pm
Friday, March 30 (field installation) 8:30 am – 12:30 pm
Kelly Middle School, 25 Mahan Drive, Norwich, CT
Private sector                                                  $25                
Municipal/nonprofit/private citizen              $20
Don’t wait!  
Seating is limited, so please register by Friday March 23, 2012.
Or contact Michael Dietz at 
michael.dietz@uconn.edu, 860-345-5225 begin_of_the_skype_highlighting            860-345-5225      end_of_the_skype_highlighting

Rain gardens are vegetated areas designed and built to accept stormwater runoff from surfaces including rooftops, roads and compacted soils. Rain gardens are increasingly being used by homeowners and municipalities to reduce the impact of stormwater on local waterways and the Long Island Sound.

CLEAR 2012 Webinar Series – Registration now available!

Our colleagues at the University of Connecticut Center for Land User Education and Research (CLEAR) have recently opened registration for the first 3 webinars of 2012. These webinars are part of a FREE monthly webinar series that covers new and noteworthy topics from the UConn Center for Land use Education and Research’s (CLEAR’s) research, geospatial training and outreach programs.

An Introduction to “Buildout” Analyses
ArcGIS Buildout image
DATE: February 28th, 2012
TIME: 2:00 – 3:00 PM
A “buildout” analysis is a planning tool that can provide insight into the possible future impacts of a town’s current land use regulations. But what does a buildout really tell you? In the first half of the webinar, we’ll explain what a buildout is and isn’t, go over common misconceptions about buildouts, and review several different types of buildouts and what type of data are needed for each. In the second half we’ll illustrate some of these concepts with two case studies – one done in 2008 for the CT Office of Policy and Management and in partnership with the Central Naugatuck Valley Council of Governments, and a recently completed buildout done in partnership with the Town of Kent. And of course, we’ll (attempt to) answer your questions. After spending this hour with us, you may not be able to do a buildout using your iPhone and a pocket calculator, but you will be able to ask good questions about the need for, uses, and types of buildouts that might apply to your community.

LID in Connecticut: a Virtual Tour of Where It’s Working
DATE: March 13th, 2012
TIME: 2:00 – 3:00 PM
No need to get on the bus for this tour! Join us for a virtual tour of Low Impact Development (LID) around the State of Connecticut. Dave Dickson and Mike Dietz will use NEMO’s LID Atlas, a cutting-edge web tool powered by Google Maps, to highlight LID projects around the state. At each stop you’ll learn the background of each site, get to see pictures, learn about obstacles, and successes. Different types of LID practices will be covered, from rain gardens to porous pavements. At the end, we’ll demonstrate the use of the Atlas so that you can take your own tour, not only around Connecticut but the entire U.S. Perhaps some of these sites will inspire you to initiate an LID project in your town? Come find out!

ArcGIS.com: A User-Friendly Tool for Creating Maps Online
DATE: May 8th, 2012
TIME: 2:00 – 3:00 PM
Interactive web maps are powerful tools for organizing and disseminating information for public consumption. For years, Google has led this revolution in online mapping by making it easy for practically anyone (even you) to create a custom web map of their own using Google Maps and Google Earth. But Google isn’t the only game in town anymore.
ESRI, the creator of the most popular desktop GIS software, has recently launched ArcGIS.com, a free web based tool for creating web maps and mapping applications. It allows a user to create customizable maps with built-in functions including the ability to: connect to a wide variety of base maps and mapping services, import existing GIS data, customize how information is displayed, edit data using a simple interface or smartphone, collaborate with others, create online galleries of web maps, establish public or private map groups, add new data, and more. This webinar will provide an overview of ESRI’s new ArcGIS.com website. Many of the functions listed above will be covered through discussion and live demonstration and will include examples of how towns and land trusts might use the technology to meet their online mapping needs.

Questions about how webinars work?  See CLEAR’s:

Historical Secessionist Movements in the United States

The United States has seen many secessionist movements throughout its history. Of course the most famous is the Confederate States of America, which seceded and triggered The Civil War, but, did you know that Dukes County, Massachusetts (much of which is made up of the communities on Martha’s Vineyard) threatened to secede from Massachusetts in 1977? Or, that 5 of 6 counties in southern New Jersey approved a non-binding secession proposal in 1980? Urban Mapping has an interactive map of secessionist movements throughout the history of the United States, which includes historical information on the movements in addition to socioeconomic indicators of the geography associated with each respective movement. Information on the movements comes from Wikipedia and the Lost States Blog. The socioeconomic indicators apparently come from aggregating county data for geographies in the U.S. while The World Bank is cited for international data.

New Google Maps Mashup: Historical Centers of Population in Connecticut

A new Google Maps mashup on the CtSDC website displays historical centers of population in Connecticut (1880-2010).

Back in October, we posted the latitude and longitudes of  the historical centers of population for Connecticut based upon decennial census data from 1880 to 2010. We have added this data to a new Google Maps mashup that can be viewed on the Connecticut State Data Center website. As of the 2010 Census, the population center of Connecticut is near Andrea Court and Yalesville Road in Cheshire. Special thanks to Daniel Czaja for formatting and processing the data!