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GIS | Health & Hazards Lab
Department of Geography
Kent State University
412 McGilvrey Hall
Kent, OH 44242
Phone: 330 672-2887
Fax: 330 672-4304

Department of Geography Homepage


Research Premise

Part of our rationale is the belief that health vulnerability is an under-appreciated aspect of North American disasters. With this in mind, we focus on spatial patterns of recovery, merging characteristics of the landscape with health outcomes. Topics include post-disaster crime, neighborhood blight, and the reestablishment and quality of services, especially those focused on mothers and children.

To be successful we also believe in a mixed methods approach where geospatial technologies and spatial analyses are combined with local context in the form of geonarratives, which are the spatially tagged stories of ride-along community members who narrate the landscape as we collect our data.

We also strive to advance our spatial understanding of health in non-disaster related contexts. For example we are working with an endocrinologist to build a Geographic Information System (GIS) supported diabetes clinic in Los Angeles which will use both clinical data and neighborhood context (through patient interviews) to support diagnosis and treatment strategies. This project is an excellent example of actionable GIS, where results can be used in near real time as part of an intervention portfolio.  Our other collaborations involve the spatial analysis of infectious and chronic disease associated with urban environments, vectored disease, and most recently, cholera in Haiti.