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Denis Joseph Dean
Dean-Economic Political and Policy, Professor-Economic, Political and Policy Sciences, School of
Office MailstopMail Box: GR31, GR 3.212, Room No.: GR3104D 
Email Address    Primary Phone Number 972-883-6852    URL Dean Denis' Webpage    Media Contact
Administrative Assistant:  Help  
Trang, Vy T
 Professional Preparation
 Ph.D.Computer Applications in ForestryVirginia Polytechnic Institute and State University1991
  Forestry Economics and Planning/Operations ResearchThe Pennsylvania State University1987
 B.S.Forest Recreation ManagementVirginia Polytechnic Institute and State University1984
Collapse Section Expand Section Research and Expertise
Research Interests
  • The development of combined artificial intelligence/geospatial analysis techniques to address geospatial problems.
  • The development of spatial optimization techniques.
  • Accuracy evaluation of spatial analysis.
  • The development of new and refinement of existing spatial statistics.
Collapse Section Expand Section Publications
 1  2 3 4 5  
  YearPublication  Type
Dean, Denis J. In preparation. Detecting Spatial Correlations in the Presence of Confounding Factors. Cartography and Geographic Information Science.
Category: Cartography and Geographic Information Science
Peer reviewed
Dean, Denis J. and Anna Brandis. In Review. A Kriging Variant Based on Neural Network-Derived Derived Experimental Semivariograms. International Journal of GIS.
Category: International Journal of GIS
Peer reviewed
Dean, Denis J. In Review. Predicting Probabilities and/or Actual Binary Events: A Review of Existing GIS/Neural Network Techniques. International Journal of GIS.
Category: International Journal of GIS
Peer reviewed
Denis J. Dean, Jose Valdez and Anne Sjostrom. In Review. A Geospatial Approach to Finding Optimal Locations for Wildfire Fuel Treatments. Transactions in GIS.
Category: Transactions in GIS
Peer reviewed
Schnieder, Claudio, Denis J. Dean and Roger M. Hoffer. In revision after first review. A Combined GIS/Neural Network/Bayesian Classification System. International Journal of Remote Sensing
Category: International Journal of Remote Sensing
Peer reviewed
Collapse Section Expand Section Presentations and Projects
  1  2 3 4 5 
Start DateEnd DatePresentation/Project
2003 2003 Finding Near-Optimal Locations for Wildfire Fuel Treatment Activities.
2003 GIS in the Rockies Conference, Denver, Colorado
2001 2001 Neural Networks as an Alternative to Statistical Modeling in the Semivariogram Analysis Portion of Kriging Procedures.
2001 INFORMS meeting, Miami Beach, Florida.
2001 2001 A Comparison of Genetic Programming and Linear Discriminant Analysis Techniques to Identify Regions at Risk for Landslides.
2001 INFORMS meeting, Miami Beach, Florida.
2001 2001 An Accuracy Assessment of Various GIS-Based Viewshed Delineation Techniques.
2001 GIS in the Rockies Conference, Denver, Colorado.
2001 2001 Spatial Modeling and Process Analysis: Some (But Not All) Possibilities for Sophisticated Spatial Modeling and Analysis.
2001. Presented to federal, state and local natural resource managers and university faculty, Guadalajara, Mexico.
Collapse Section Expand Section Affiliations
Past Graduate Students
Alkharraz Abdul MS 2001 Using remote sensing techniques to monitor desertification: A case study in Qatar
Blackard Jock Ph.D. 1998 Comparison of neural networks and discriminant analysis in predicting forest cover types
Boyack Gary MS 1998 Evaluation of the spatial accuracy and precision information available in the Wyoming Geographic Coordinate Database (GCDB)
Brandis Anna Ph.D. 2005 Evaluation of a hybrid kriging/artificial neural network spatial interpolator
Celio Clint MS 1998 Modeling of heavy metal pollutants in the Upper Arkansas River Basin using geographic information systems (GIS)
Davis Brett MS 2001 Identifying likely wildfire ignition points using topographic analysis, statistical investigations, and artificial intelligence
Duran Johnathan MS 1996 B Non-Thesis (Plan C) option B
Ferner Christina MS 2003 A comparison of the accuracy of artificial neural networks and regression analysis in predicting probable lightning strike locations
Fox Andrew MS 2004 Absolute accuracy assessment of high resolution digital terrain models created using digital photogrammetric techniques
Furaus Mark MS 1995 Limitations to future urbanization in the semi-arid western United States : a study of municipal water supply requirements
Geer Susannah MS 2002 Non-native plant invasions along roads in the Rocky Mountain National Park, Colorado and Surrounding Area
Haire Sandra MS 1998 Spatial factors influencing bird distribution in grasslands near Boulder, Colorado
Heimiller Dona MS 1995 B Non-Thesis (Plan C) option B
Howe Rodney MS 1997 Mitigation strategies for managing brucellosis in the Jackson Bison Herd
Hughes Elaine MS 2002 Neural networks as an alternative to statistical modeling in the semivariogram analysis portion of kriging procedures
Islas-Gutierrez Fabian Ph.D. 1996 A timber harvest unit delineation model to minimize soil erosion
Jan Jihn-Fa Ph.D. 1997 Classification of remote sensing data using adaptive machine learning techniques
Litschert Sandra MS 2001 A comparison of genetic programming and linear discriminant analysis techniques to identify regions at risk for landslides
Lizarraga Alicia MS 1996 Predicting and modeling aesthetic quality of forests as a function of distances from clearcuts
Maloy Mark MS 1999 Accuracy of raster and triangulated irregular network techniques in viewshed delineation
McFadden Joseph MS 2007 Distribution line siting model for rural mountain areas using GIS-based least cumulative cost analysis
Miller Ryan MS 2001 Determining differences in the spatial distribution of forest structure on the Kaibab Plateau: implications for forest management and the northern goshawk
Neufeld David MS 1998 Developing a resource tool for visualizing and analyzing forest planning options
Olson Keith MS 2006 Development and evaluation of a spatial index measuring upstream contributions to riparian ecosystem quality
Pendley Trisha MS 1996 The utilization of remote sensing and GIS technologies to test for spatial association between campsites and spotted knapweed in the Bob Marshall Wilderness
Peters Brian MS 1995 Automated ridge identification in mountainous areas and a comparison to manual ridge identification
Poston Erin MS 2001 Development of models to estimate coarse woody biomass in a large-scale windthrow disturbance
Riggs Philip MS 2004 Elevation data errors, spatial resolution, and software algorithm effects on geographic information system (GIS) predicted viewsheds
Russell Heidi MS 2005 GIS in the Larimer County noxious weed eradication program (professional paper)
Smith Pete MS 2001 Derivation of area Dependent Adjacency Constraints Using GIS Analysis
Steenson Jerry MS 1997 Localized indirect economic impacts of natural hazards
Valdez-Lazalda Jose Rene Ph.D. 2001 Optimal Spatial Locations of Forest Fuel Management Activities
Advisees pursuing masters and Ph.D. degrees
Canney Lindsey MS 2008 Undecided, plans to continue the kriging/ANN studies conducted by Anna Brandis.
Giles Terry MS ???? Investigation of the ability of genetic programming techniques to recreate spatial databases
Kraus Brian MS 2008 Undecided, plans to work in the area of comparing statistical- and ANN-based riparian models
Mackie Steve MS 2008 Effects of DEM errors and resolutions on predicted slope and aspect measures.
Riggs Philip Ph.D. 2007 Spatial distribution models of pesticide exposure and dosage
Collapse Section Expand Section Appointments
DurationRankDepartment / SchoolCollege / OfficeUniversity / Company
2008-PresentProfessor and HeadGeospatial Information Sciences ProgramSchool of Economic, Political and Policy ScienceThe University of Texas at Dallas
2004-PresentCo-chair  Colorado State University's Information Science and Technology Center (ISTeC) ( research advisory committee
2004-PresentExecutive committee member  Colorado State University's Information Science and Technology Center (ISTeC)
2003-PresentCollege of Natural Resources representative  Colorado State University's Information Science and Technology Center (ISTeC)
2001-PresentMember  Colorado State University's President's committee of web-based instruction
2001-2006DirectorRemote Sensing/GIS Program Colorado State University
2001-2006DirectorInterdisciplinary Graduate Certificate in Geospatial Sciences Program Colorado State University
1998-2002GIS Advisory Committee  Aims Community College
1997-2008Associate Professor of Geospatial SciencesDepartment of Forest, Range and Watershed StewardshipCollege of Natural ResourcesColorado State University
1996-PresentMember  Centro Agronomico Tropical De Investigacion Y Ensenanza (CATIE), Turrialba, Costa Rica
1996-2005Chairman  College of Natural Resources Computer Technology Committee
1995-1996Department of Forest Sciences Representative  College of Natural Resources Computer Technology Committee
1994-1997GIS Data Committee co-chairman  Colorado Rockies Regional Cooperative
1992-1997Assistant Professor of Geospatial Sciences  Colorado State University
1991-1992Postdoctoral Research Associate  Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
1990-1991Graduate Research Associate  Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
1988-1990Graduate Teaching Associate  Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
1987-1988Graduate Research Associate  Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University
1985-1987Graduate Research Associate  The Pennsylvania State University
8/15/97-12/16/97GIS Training for Turkish HydrologistsCSU Consortium for International Development$7,172Previous
8/1/97-8/1/98Spatially Explicit Models of Oak Woodland Landscapes in California and Israel: Do Successional Patterns Converge?USDA Forest Service/Jewish National League$117,000Previous
10/24/96-3/1/97Building an Interactive Map Composition System on the World Wide WebColorado Advanced Technologies Institute$8,550Previous
04/01/08-04/01/11Linking Watershed Characteristics with Flow Regime & Geomorphic Context to Diagnose Water Quality Impairment at Multiple Scales - Phase II.Environmental Protection Agency$504,000Current
11/1/03-10/31/07Linking Watershed Characteristics with Flow Regime & Geomorphic Context to Diagnose Water Quality Impairment at Multiple ScalesU.S. Environmental Protection Agency$624,536Previous
4/19/00-1/31/02Template for the Development of a SNAP-like Software Program for USFS Project-Level Planning.Template for the Development of a SNAP-like Software Program for USFS Project-Level Planning.$79,540Previous
9/1/00-8/31/02Landscape Characterization Over Time.USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station.$55,115Previous
6/1/99-4/30/01Development of a Flexible, Standardized Methodology for Optimizing Fuel Treatment Program Across Space and TimeJoint Fire Science Program.$105,021Previous
5/1/99-9/30/01Inventorying and Monitoring Natural Resources Status and Trends in the National Park SystemUSDI National Park Service$52,681Previous
 News Articles
Dean Selected for School of Economic, Political and Policy Sciences
UT Dallas News Center

Denis Dean, professor and head of the Geography and Geospatial Information Sciences Program at UT Dallas, has been named dean of the School of Economic, Political and Policy Sciences.Dr. Dean is an expert in geospatial analysis, which can be applied to real world applications including urban planning, population studies and computer mapping programs.He began his new role as dean of EPPS on Nov. 1.
Dr. Dean joined UT Dallas in 2008 and served as professor and head of the Geography and Geospatial Information Sciences Programs, where he was responsible for administering the program budget, student retention, and faculty teaching assignments. Under his tenure, the program’s enrollment has grown by 15 percent.
Prior to coming to UT Dallas, Dr. Dean taught at Colorado State University for 15 years, where he helped launch the Remote Sensing and Geospatial Information Systems Program.Dr. Dean also designed and taught courses that exposed undergraduate forestry students to basic concepts of remote sensing, GPS and spatial statistics.His current research interests include spatial optimization, the use of artificial intelligence and other computing approaches to address geospatial problems, developing new spatial data analysis techniques, and assessing the accuracy of existing techniques.

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 Additional Information
Administrative Experience
  • 2004-Present: Co-chair of the Research Advisory Committee and member of the Executive Committee of CSU's Information Science and Technology Center (ISTeC) ( ISTeC is a campus-wide group dedicated to promoting interdisciplinary IT research and teaching across the CSU campus. In my role with ISTeC, I have organized poster sessions (with over 100 presenters at each session) for university-wide IT research symposia, organized the inaugural and two subsequent annual retreats for CSU faculty involved in IT research, represented CSU at ISTeC industrial advisory committee meetings, and so on.
  • 2001-2006: Director of the remote sensing/GIS program. Responsible for coordinating classes and seminars, distributing information about the activities of program faculty to other faculty and administrators throughout the university, first point of contact for individuals seeking information about the program, etc.
  • 2001-2006: Director of the Graduate Certificate in Geospatial Sciences program. Responsible for tracking all students admitted into the program by all certificate advisors (there are approximately 25 advisors in at least four different colleges), approving course substitutions and wavers, approving completion of the program, interacting with the graduate school in ensuring that student records are up-to-date, etc.
  • 1992-2001: As the head of the GIS portion of the Remote Sensing/GIS Program in Colorado State University's College of Natural Resources, I coordinated the GIS teaching activities of four faculty members within the program.

Selected Service Activities
  • Member of the program committee of the Second International Conference on Geospatial Semantics (
  • Co-Chair of the Research Advisory Committee (RAC) of CSU's Information Science and Technology Center (ISTeC) (, 2004 to present.
  • Member of the executive committee of CSU's Information Science and Technology Center (ISTeC) (, 2004 to present.
  • College of Natural Resources representative Research Advisory Committee (RAC) of CSU's Information Science and Technology Center (ISTeC) (, 2003 to present.
  • College of Natural Resources computer technology committee chairman, 1995 to 2006.
  • Department of Forest Sciences representative to College of Natural Resource computer technology committee, 1993 to 1995.
  • Member of the Colorado State University's President's committee of web-based instruction, 2001 to present.
  • I served as the Department of Forest Science's representative to the Director's Advisory Board for the Colorado Agricultural Experiment Station from the time this board was founded in 1993 until 1994.
  • I worked with Dr. Roger Hoffer and Mr. Rocky Coleman to develop a minor in Spatial Information Management Systems (SIMS) in 1994.
  • In 2000 and 2001, I worked with an interdepartmental team of faculty to develop a graduate-level certificate in geospatial sciences.
  • In 1994, I developed a gift of computer software to the College of Natural Resources from Systems Modeling Corporation (SIMAN software; approximate value $120,000).
  • In 1995, I developed a computer hardware gift from Hewlett Packard Corporation to the College (mass storage devices, approximate value $12,000).
  • I have served on search committees hiring the department head and various faculty within our department and other departments around campus.
  • I oversaw the GIS operations taking place at the AHarnessing Data and Technology for Forest Health Decisionmaking Workshop@ sponsored by American Forests and held at Colorado State University's Pingree Park campus in 1996.
  • I wrote the College of Natural Resources' general Information Technologies Plan (1996) and the more specific Instructional Information Technology Plan (1997). I wrote the update to the general technology plan in 1999.
  • I spearheaded the (ultimately successful) effort to change student technology fees within the College of Natural Resources (1996 - 1997).
  • I serve on informal advisory board for GIS operations in the university library (1995 to present).
  • I developed and maintained the Department of Forest Science's web page from the time I created it (in 1997) until 1999.
  • I represented the Department of Forest Sciences on a College-level web presence committee convened by the Dean.
  • I served on the search committee that hired a new Head for the Department of Forest Sciences.
  • I served on the search committee that hired a new forest policy faculty member for the Department of Forest Sciences.
  • I served on the search committee that hired a new forest fire ecology faculty member for the Department of Forest Sciences.
  • I served as the faculty advisor for the College of Natural Resources' undergraduate student resident hall (Ellis Hall).
  • I organized and ran a special problems course that allowed graduate students to gain experience using GIS while simultaneously helping an Estes Park community plan for future growth.
  • I reviewed an (ultimately successful) $1.5 million NSF proposal from the University of Wyoming to establish a spatial data teaching/research/service unit between the natural resource, computer science and biology departments.
  • I served on an NSF review team reviewing the progress of the University of Wyoming proposal mentioned above.
  • I have served on both NASA and NSF proposal review teams.
  • I have reviewed research proposals for the Nature Conservancy.
  • I periodically review manuscripts for Photogrammetric Engineering and Remote Sensing, Cartography and Geographic Information Science, Transactions in GIS, International Journal of GIS, Environmental Management, and Forest Science.
  • I served on a board of Aluminaries@ evaluating the future of GIS software development at Bentley Corporation Executive GeoEngineering Summit.
  • I conceived, created, and operated the Colorado Rockies Regional Cooperative (CORRC) spatial data library. This electronic library ( allows anyone to download large amounts of digital spatial data describing the northern Colorado region. The CORRC library is no longer up to date (the CORRC organization folded in 1997), but the library is still being maintained.
  • I assisted the University of Wyoming in establishing an interagency spatial data clearinghouse (patterned after the CORRC example) for the Yellowstone region.
  • I became involved with the Colorado Advanced Technology Institute (CATI) in an effort to develop methods of distributing maps across the World Wide Web.
  • I became involved with an effort initiated by the Colorado Department of Natural Resources to establish and Federal Geographic Data Committee (FGDC) spatial data node in Colorado.

Professional Memberships
  • Member of the Association of American Geographers.
  • Member of the American Society of Photogrammetry and Remote Sensing.
  • Member of Xi Sigma Pi (Forestry honor society).
  • Member of Sigma Xi (Scientific research society).

Professional and University Citizenship
  • Head of the Geography and Geospatial Information Sciences Programs
  • Chair of the EPPS School Personnel Review Committee
  • Developed and implemented the Geospatial Information Sciences Bachelor of Science degree program

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