Dept. of Geography News & Events this Week - 9/24/13


September 24, 2013                                                       
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News daily Pratidin

Petra Tschakert conducted a methods training workshop on participatory scenario building and flexible flood management in Assam, India. This workshop and subsequent fieldwork in four rural communities along tributaries to the Brahmaphutra are part of a large climate change adaptation project (HICAP), in partnership with CICERO (Norway), ICIMOD (Nepal), and Aaranyak (India). One of the key goals was to train NGO members, community development facilitators, and governmental officials from disaster risk reduction units to incorporate down-scaled climate projections into community-based story lines about flood risks and opportunities in 20 years from now and thereby encourage anticipatory learning. Pictured above: Petra Tschakert, right, and Armando LaMadrid from CICERO.


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Rachel (Kurtz) Headley (Ph.D. ’03) is leaving the USGS to become the STEM Liaison for Black Hills State University in Spearfish, South Dakota.  She'll be helping them build out their science disciplines and get their scientists more engaged in the Sanford Underground Research Laboratory in Lead, a deep underground lab that is primarily focused on physics.

Erica Smithwick’s Working Group on “forecast forest responses to atmospheric nitrogen deposition” has received support from The John Wesley Powell Center for Analysis and Synthesis, which promotes science-driven, interdisciplinary analysis and synthesis of complex natural science problems.

Sam Stehle and Donna Peuquet received the Best Presentation award at the NGA Academic Research Program (NARP) Symposium in Washington, D.C.

Bigfoot skeptic Josh Stevens just couldn't resist mapping the dataset of North American sasquatch sightings released by the Bigfoot Field Researchers Organization. Josh's blog post quickly went viral with a write-up on LiveScience that's been picked up by NBC News, Fox News, Yahoo News, and Business Insider. It was also featured on the Discovery Channel show "Daily Planet." Read more.



September 27 Coffee Hour: Amy Hessl


Energy and Empire: What Can the Mongols Teach Us About Climate Change and Society?

• Refreshments are offered at 3:30 p.m. in 319 Walker Building.

• The lecture begins at 4:00 p.m. in 112 Walker Building.

Climate variability has large impacts on society, particularly societies that are directly tied to local net primary productivity through agriculture or pastoralism.  Understanding the connections between climate, energy, and society during historical and modern climatic transitions requires annual resolution records with high fidelity climate signals. Semi-arid regions like Mongolia are especially sensitive to small changes in the climate state and are also projected to experience the early consequences of anthropogenic climate change. Read more.

Watch the webcast live or later with Coffee Hour To Go


October 4 Coffee Hour: Peter Hudson
Just when you thought you were safe ... the ecology and challenges of emerging diseases


Complete Fall Coffee Hour Schedule


PGS meets in October
The annual meeting of the Pennsylvania Geographical Society (PGS) will be held in Pittsburgh from October 25–26. The PGS meeting provides a great opportunity for both undergraduate and graduate students to present their research projects (oral and postal presentations) in a non-intimidating environment. For most students, this is a unique opportunity to hone your presentation skills before moving onto the national AAG meeting. First-time presenters are very welcome. As a further incentive to encourage greater participation the PGS Board has lowered the registration fee for both student members (now only $10) and student non-members (only $20).  All presenting students (undergrads and grads) are eligible to compete in the paper and postal contests for handsome cash prizes. Additionally, there is a map contest. For any questions please contact Brent Zaprowski at


Recently Published

Ecosystem productivity and carbon cycling in intact and annually burnt forest at the dry southern limit of the Amazon rainforest (Mato Grosso, Brazil)
Wanderley Rocha, Daniel B. Metcalfe, Chris E. Doughty, Paulo Brando, Divino Silvério, Kate Halladay, Daniel C. Nepstad, Jennifer K. Balch & Yadvinder Malhi in Plant Ecology & Diversity.
The impact of fire on carbon cycling in tropical forests is potentially large, but remains poorly quantified, particularly in the locality of the transition forests that mark the boundaries between humid forests and savannas.
Read more.


From the Centre Daily Times
New Center for Solutions to Weather and Climate Risk aims to limit weather concerns
Director David Titley to speak at October 18 Coffee Hour
When the Center for Solutions to Weather and Climate Risk opened in late August, Penn State’s department of meteorology accomplished a goal it had been working on for more than a decade.
The center’s purpose is to minimize the risk that weather and climate pose to business, government and society, primarily by educating students to use the technology the center has, its new director, David Titley, said.
Read more.

Other geography news
AAG Newsletter

The Allegheny Front

Living on Earth
LOCAL EVENTS AND DEADLINES(New additions to this list are highlighted.)
See more events and deadlines on the Student Calendar. 

September 26   Talk: “The Risks and Rewards of Science Communication,” at 1:00 p.m. in

                       room 114 of the Earth-Engineering Science Building on the Penn State campus.

September 27   Coffee Hour: Amy Hessl "Energy and Empire ..."

October 4         Coffee Hour: Peter Hudson  "Just when you thought you were safe ..."

October 11        Reception and celebration for Rosie Long 
October 11       Coffee Hour: Leonie Newhouse

October 18       Coffee Hour: David Titley

 October 25      Annual pre-tenure symposium: "Equity and Inclusion: Successfully Navigating

                       the Promotion and Tenure Process” from 9:00 a.m. to 3:15 p.m.

                       in the Paterno Library  

October 25      Miller Lecture/Coffee Hour: Ken Young

(New additions to this list are highlighted.)

September 27–28   Nature-Society Workshop at Clark University, Worcester, Massachusetts

                            Registration deadline: September 16

September 27–28 Internationalizing the Campus, College and Classroom, Penn State

October 7–8   Susquehanna Water Science Forum, Camp Hill, Pennsylvania.

October 9–11 NACIS Conference in Greenville, South Carolina

October 9 –12 Pioneer America Society: Association for the Preservation of Artifacts and    
                      Landscapes (PAS:APAL) Utica, New York.  
October 13–16 GEOINT Symposium, Tampa, Florida
October 18–19  AAG Middle States Division Annual Meeting

October 25–26  Pennsylvania Geographical Society Annual Meeting, Pittsburgh, PennsylvaniaOctober 24–26  Geographies of Labor, 35th Annual North American Labor History Conference
                       at Wayne State University, Detroit, Michigan
October 27–31 Imaging and Mapping for Disaster Management: From the Individual to the 
                      Global Community, joint conference of the CaGIS and ASPRS
October 30–November 2    AAG Middle Atlantic Division Regional Meeting
                                      (jointly with AAG Applied Geography Specialty Group, Annapolis, Maryland
November 1–3  Graduate Climate Conference at Woods Hole, Massachusetts
November 6–8   International Greening Education Event in Karlsruhe, Germany

December 7     IEEE ICDM Workshop on Data Mining for Geoinformatics and Environmental Hazards

                     (DMG-EH) in Dallas, Texas 
April 8–12  AAG Annual Meeting in Tampa, Florida
May 18–21 ISCRAM at Penn State

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Angela Rogers, Marketing Communications Specialist
Department of Geography, College of Earth and Mineral Sciences, Penn State
316 Walker Building, University Park PA 16802
Office: 814-863-4562 Cell: 814-571-2942  •  •
Member of the Penn State Commission for Women. Ask me how you can get involved