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SSI accomplishments at the 2019 UCGIS Symposium

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Representatives of the USC Spatial Sciences figured prominently in the 2019 Symposium of the University Consortium for Geographic Information Science (UCGIS) that was held June 10 - 13 in Washington, DC.

On behalf of the UCGIS, its Executive Director Diana Sinton presented SSI's John P. Wilson, founding director and professor, with the UCGIS 2019 Education Award in recognition of Wilson's career-long contributions to GIScience education. Read more about the award to Wilson here. Wilson also gave an update on the UCGIS Body of Knowledge project, for which he serves as editor.

This year's UCGIS symposium featured presentations and discussions on the geospatial humanities and the transdisciplinary opportunities for the GIScience community. SSI Professor of the Practice Karen Kemp served on this year's symposium program committee.

The program included a paper presentation by Chris Marder ('19 M.S. in Geographic Information Science and Technology) from USC Spatial. In his presentation "The Role of Precision in Spatial Narratives: Using a Modified Discourse Quality Index to Measure the Quality of Deliberate Spatial Data," Marder summarized the research he conducted for this M.S. in GIST thesis under the direction of Jennifer Bernstein, SSI lecturer. Marder's thesis earned first prize in the USC Spatial Sciences Institute 2019 Thesis Prize competition. Marder suggested that researching spatial precision in narratives can help GIScience and spatial humanities understand how people can communicate spatial thinking when describing their relationships with landscapes.

As of this annual symposium, Karen Kemp also has begun her term as UCGIS president and Jennifer Swift, SSI associate professor (teaching), has begun a term as chair of the UCGIS membership committee.

The mission of UCGIS is to promote and foster communities of practice for GIScience research, education, and policy endeavors in higher education and with allied institutions. Learn more about UCGIS here.

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