Geography alum Jordan Long visits Kenya as part of a collaborative international land-mapping workshop

Jordan Long, earth research scientist for the USGS/EROS Center, has travelled the world researching vegetation patterns and climate trends in a host of diverse geographic environments.

Jordan Long, earth research scientist for the USGS/EROS Center, has travelled the world researching vegetation patterns and climate trends in a host of diverse geographic environments.

The delicate balance between land cover and climate is a pressing issue that directly impacts all living systems in the global community; and when it comes to sharing and exchanging information regarding the most recent trends in land-mapping technology, you can never have too many voices. Bringing these voices together was the driving force behind the 2014 Southern and Eastern Africa Global Land Cover Workshop held at the Regional Centre for Mapping and Resource Development in Nairobi, Kenya. The workshop, held March 10-14, 2014, offered a forum for knowledge exchange and technical training for some of the world’s foremost land cover mapping scientists, including SDSU geography alum Jordan Long ’08/’12, who represented the United States Geological Survey Earth Resources Observation and Science Center.

“The workshop was an excellent opportunity to broaden my knowledge about the changing land cover of Eastern and Southern Africa,” said Long, USGS/EROS Center Earth research scientist. “It was also a chance to learn about the local people and rich culture of Kenya and the beauty of the Kenya countryside and wildlife.”

With representatives from 15 African countries, the workshop brought Long and other land-cover experts together to enhance the abilities of developing countries and improve techniques for generating and updating existing land-cover information using Earth observation satellite imagery.

“It was wonderful experience meeting people from different counties and sharing knowledge of GIS and remote sensing,” said Devendra Dahal, senior geomatic analyst at Stinger Ghaffarian Technologies. “This kind of workshop definitely helps collaboration between different agencies and countries in achieving a common goal in an efficient way. Everyone has different sets of skills and capabilities so when we bring them together, everyone benefits.”

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