Our Colloquia Series presents engaging research from around the world. Guest presenters cover varied topics from all aspects of Geography. This page lists abstracts from past and future colloquia.

Public postings on a board with various posters and info in a foreign language

Michael Dwyer: Territorial affairs: Legacy and invisibility in the global land rush

April 27, 2018

Over the last decade, transnational farmland deals in the global South have become increasingly prevalent and controversial. Framed by scholars as a new global land rush, these deals have highlighted the link between the shifting geopolitics of development cooperation and intertwined problems of food security, climate change, and global trade... Read more »
Bolivian mural depicting history of Bolivian

Tom Perreault: Nature and Nation: Political Ecologies of Extraction and Belonging in Bolivia

April 20, 2018

Resource nationalism is everywhere. From the potent symbolism of American coal jobs, to the constitutional protections afforded to Chile’s national copper company CODELCO, to Russia’s resource-centered development strategy (as laid out in Vladimir Putin’s doctoral dissertation), forms of nationalism are commonly expressed through the idiom of nature and natural resources... Read more »
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American Association of Geographers Preview: Student Talks

April 6, 2018

Four Geography graduate students will present a preview of the talks they will give at the American Association of Geographers (AAG) meeting in New Orleans April 10-14, 2018: Sarah Tynen : State Territorialization through Bureaucratic Control: Authoritarian Governance at the Neighborhood Level in China By building on the concept of... Read more »
A visualization of openflights data using graph drawing

David O'Sullivan: Reimagining GIScience for relational spaces

March 23, 2018

A visualization of openflights data using graph drawing A mismatch between largely absolute Newtonian models of space in GIScience and the relational spaces of critical geographies has contributed to mutual disinterest between the fields. Critical GIS has offered an intellectual critique of GIScience without substantially altering how key geographical concepts... Read more »
Statues on a Chinese city street

Andrew Grant: Ethnopolitics and the Chinese City: Urbanizing Tibetans during the era of Commodity Housing

March 16, 2018

This talk explores how China's urbanization program is recasting the politics of place in the largest city on the Tibetan Plateau, Xining. Urban development discourse and practice is transforming increasing numbers of China’s ethnic population into de-ethnicized urban citizens under the the sign of the Civilized City. The state deploys... Read more »
computer graphic of aerial shot with roads, city, and open country

Kathleen Stewart: Big Data GPS Trajectory Analysis for Travel Activity Modeling

March 9, 2018

We have been applying big geospatial data processing techniques to vehicle GPS data collected over several months in 2015 for Maryland roads in order to reconstruct spatiotemporal vehicle trajectories and understand how the volume of traffic varies on different types of roads. Volume of traffic or vehicle miles traveled estimates... Read more »
Map of geographical distribution of tornado and flash flood warnings

Jennifer Henderson: A Hazard Multiple: The Co-Production of Tornado/Flash Flood Warnings in a National Weather Service Forecast Office

March 2, 2018

During a tornado outbreak in May of 2013, a family of seven took shelter in an underground culvert in Oklahoma City, fearful, no doubt, for their children’s lives; minutes later, they were swept away in flood waters that raced through ditches and culverts near the city, killing all of them... Read more »
Woman squatting, burying head in arms, in front of earthquake devastation of Sichuan China

Christian Sorace: The Mirage of Development: The Sichuan Earthquake, One Decade Later

Feb. 23, 2018

As we approach the 10th anniversary of the 2008 Sichuan earthquake, it is worth reflecting on the post-earthquake reconstruction from the perspective of what was built, why was it built, and ultimately for whom was it built? Based on my book Shaken Authority: China’s Communist Party and the 2008 Sichuan... Read more »
Person chipping rocks with a hammer in a mountain landscape

Anu Sabhlok: Road Chronicles: Ethnographic notes on defense and development from the Indo-Tibetan border roads

Feb. 16, 2018

“China is building roads right up to the border and we have to follow suit.” There is an urgency in the road building activity on India’s borders. These roads, we are told, will secure the nation and bring development to its peripheral areas. In this paper, I go deeper into... Read more »
Satellite image of Bohaiaqua

Neil Brenner: Is the world urban?

Feb. 9, 2018

In what sense is the 21st century world "urban"? In this lecture, Neil Brenner critiques contemporary ideologies of the "urban age," which confront this question with reference to the purported fact that more than 50% of the world's population resides within cities. Against such demographic, city-centric understandings, Brenner excavates Henri... Read more »