A Visit with Sean Sloan (LGR 2009)

Posted by: Kelley Welf

Kelley Welf

Shelley Nehl, Grants Program Administrator, and I had a wonderful opportunity last week to meet 2009 Lindbergh Grant Recipient Sean Sloan.  He was in Minnesota, all the way from Melbourne, Australia, to meet with the folks from the Minnesota Population Center at the University of Minnesota and to give a presentation about the research he conducted using Lindbergh Grant funds. 

Although Sean has not yet submitted his final report for his research project entitled, "Combining Satellite Imagery and Census Data to Show how Socio-Economic Development Encourages Forest Regeneration in Panama," he told us that one particularly exciting outcome of his project is the creation of what is essentially a global census of the environment using satellite images.  He has also gathered census data from Panama for the period of 1980 - 2000, to study the pathways of social and environmental change.  He believes that his study measures and confirms theories of change and could improve the field of geography.  Sean says the most significant outcome of his work is learning what social changes influence which specific environmental changes, and they aren't always what we might think.

I hope you'll stay tuned for further updates on this fascinating study.

A special thanks to Sean for spending the extra time with Shelley and me, and to the kind people we met at the Minnesota Population Center.