Six CPGIS members named 2021/22 AAG Fellows

Six CPGIS members were named AAG Fellows of the American Association of Geographers (2021/22 classes)

Dr. Qihao Weng is Chair Professor of Hong Kong Polytechnic University and Director of the Center for Urban and Environmental Change at Indiana State University, and a leader in the development of the field of urban remote sensing. He is a prolific author of scientific articles, over fifty of which have more than 100 citations. Among his many contributions, Dr. Weng and colleagues developed a methodology for estimating temperatures with satellite-derived measures of vegetation that is now applied widely throughout a wide range of fields. His work, however, has gone far beyond scientific articles. He has helped lead the field of remote sensing at the AAG and beyond. He has organized seventy sessions at the AAG since 2001. He also has served as Editor-in-Chief of ISPRS Journal of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing. Under his leadership this journal has become increasingly central in the field. Dr. Weng has also been Urban Task Lead for the Group on Earth Observation (GEO). At Indiana State University, he led the ISU Center for Urban and Environmental Change, focusing on the study of urban and suburban environments, and tutored thirty Ph.D. and MA students. He has also focused his writing beyond articles to include a seminal remote sensing text. Beyond his specific area of remote sensing, he has provided service to the AAG and to his institutions, serving on AAG Committees and Specialty Groups, chairing the Indiana State University Asian & Pacific Islander (API) Caucus, and being a member of the President’s Council on Inclusive Excellence. In sum, Dr. Weng is a superb and generous scholar who has added an enormous amount to the field of urban remote sensing.

A world-leading researcher in the representation of complex spatiotemporal phenomena, Dr. May Yuan is a renowned scholar in GIScience and her work has been pivotal in advancing geographic representation, space-time analytics, spatiotemporal modeling, and temporal GIS. As Editor in Chief of the leading GIScience journal, Dr. Yuan advanced GIScience as a research domain and helped maintain its strong identity within Geography. Dr. Yuan has been highly effective in increasing the stature of women in GIScience and served the AAG on the Editorial Board of the Annals, as a Specialty Group chair, and as a Section Editor for the International Encyclopedia of Geography. Dr. Yuan is extremely supportive of students’ research, fosters their development as independent scientists and professionals, and is notable for her encouragement of students from diverse backgrounds. Dr Yuan has an outstanding record of service to the nation, including the Mapping Sciences Committee of the National Research Council, and the United States Geospatial Intelligence Foundation. The AAG recognizes Dr. Yuan for her scholarship, editorial stewardship, mentorship, and wide-ranging service with this appointment as an AAG Fellow.

Dr. Li An is a creative and ground-breaking geographer whose work on agent-based modeling and space-time analysis has significantly improved our ability to model human-environment processes, in particular land use change. In particular, his work extended “survival analysis,” which has been used to understand temporal changes, to study spatial problems, by incorporating GIScience methods into the traditional survival analysis approaches. In honor of his work, in 2020 he was elected a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). At his home institution of San Diego State University, he is the founding director of the Complex Human-Environment Systems Center, jointly sponsored by San Diego State University and Peking University (China). Dr. An has also been highly active in the greater fields of Geography and Ecological Modeling. He has currently or previously served on the boards of four journals, including the Annals of the American Association of Geographers. He was chair of the AAG Spatial Analysis and Modeling Specialty Group and has helped found a number of international research and education networks involving collaborators from around the globe. He has also helped lead equity, inclusion, and diversity efforts in the North American Regional Association of the International Association for Landscape Ecology (IALE-NA). Overall, Dr. An is a creative and inclusive scholar whose work brings together both areas of study and people to uncover new ways of thinking.

Dr. Chansheng He, Professor and Distinguished Faculty Scholar, is an exemplary geographer and scholar of water resources whose work at Western Michigan University combines data gathering through remote sensing with GIS analysis and data management to link data at various spatial scales, in order to address how land management affects water resources. To do this, he brings together knowledge from fields across the social and physical sciences. He also developed, with colleagues, spatial software that helps track surface runoff, soil erosion, and nutrient loadings. This tool has been applied to watersheds around the world. For his work, he has been made a member of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS). Beyond his excellent scholarship, Dr. He has also added much to the discipline through his service. He has been a major reason why Western Michigan University’s Geography department has distinguished itself as a thriving program. He also holds adjunct appointments in his native China. He has been active in the AAG’s Water Resources Specialty Group, is currently a member of the AAG’s Awards Committee, and has been a member of the AAG’s Publications Committee. Dr. He’s excellence as a scholar has made him a key member of the Water Resources Geography community.

Dr. Shaowen Wang is a Professor and Head of the Department of Geography and Geographic Information Science at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign (UIUC). He is the founding director of the CyberGIS Center for Advanced Digital and Spatial Studies at UIUC. Dr. Wang coined the term cyberGIS and developed the first theoretical framework of cyberGIS, offering novel approaches to interdisciplinary and transdisciplinary geospatial discovery and innovation. His work has demonstrated the value of high-performance and distributed computing for data- and computationally intensive geographic analysis. The cyberGIS software and tools created in his research have been used to make complex computational work possible by tens of thousands of researchers and educators in domains ranging from the geosciences to social sciences. In addition to his research, he has developed online graduate certificates and MS degrees in cyberGIS and geospatial data science at UIUC and has supervised more than 30 PhD students and postdoctoral fellows in his first 16 years as a faculty member. Dr. Wang has also deeply engaged in service across the GIScience community, including partnership with the AAG and UCGIS to conduct “summer schools” focused on developing the next generation geospatial workforce, and service to the CyberInfrastructure Specialty Group. The AAG recognizes Dr. Shaowen Wang as an AAG Fellow for his outstanding research, mentoring, and service. 

Dr. Xinyue Ye is the Harold L. Adams Endowed Professor on Interdisciplinary Built Environment Research, and Associate Professor of Provost Investment Hire for Urban Planning at Texas A&M University, where he is the founding director of Urban Data Science Lab. Dr. Ye is one of the most cited urban and regional research scholars in the world, and widely recognized for his contributions in geography as well as computational science. Dr. Ye has an outstanding publication record and numerous federal grants to promote human-centered urban informatics, especially the convergent research across disciplines towards urban sustainability and community resilience. He has secured grants for this work from the U.S. National Science Foundation, the Department of Transportation, the Department of Commerce, the Department of Energy, and the National Institute of Justice. His interdisciplinary research and positions held in geography, planning, and computational science provide him with unique insights into the functioning of complex systems such as cities. Dr. Ye has led four different AAG Specialty Groups and served on the AAG International Research and Scholarly Exchange Committee. He is committed to help students develop the knowledge and skills in spatial data science and data analytics that are needed to identify and address the problems of today’s world. The AAG is pleased to recognize Dr. Xinyue Ye as an AAG Fellow.