remote sensing for international development


Course overview

The goal of this seminar-style class is to explore the ways remote sensing data are being used within an international development context, broadly defined. While the typical goal of seminar-style graduate-level courses is understand the theory and underpinnings of a given literature, this course is unique in that we will focus on understanding how projects were completed with satellite data, what data sources were necessary, how expert local knowledge was incorporated, and how various challenges were faced and overcome. We will also pay particular attention to how the application of remote sensing data helped change policy in different countries across the globe.

Students will be expected to read papers from the academic literature, synthesize this information by contributing to weekly discussion questions, and participate actively in discussion. Each student will lead one week’s discussion, and also complete one literature review paper.

Logistics, expectations, and grading

Meet three credit hours per week
Read four-five papers each week
Provide three thought provoking discussion questions for each class
Lead discussion during one class period
Grades based on level of preparation and participation in weekly discussion (50%), and one paper (50%)

Possible weekly topics

Refugee movements and migration
Population mapping, counts
Expansion of irrigation
Dams – planning, environmental impacts
Urban sprawl and land use planning
Squatter settlement detection, location, retrofitting
Village detection, mapping, and change
Earthquake response
Flood response
Land slides
Economic development from space
Transportation planning
Disease mapping, monitoring

Course resources

Syllabus  |  Reading list  |  Assignments  |  Class materials  | Readings

Course number: Geog 970

Instructor: Annemarie Schneider
Credit hours: 3
Offered: spring 2016

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