Dr. Nicholas R. Magliocca
Leadership Board Fellow, College of Arts & Sciences
Associate Professor, Department of Geography
My broad research interests are in human-environmental interactions and land-use change. Specifically, I am interested in how people make land-use decisions, how those decisions modify the functioning of natural systems, and how those modifications feedback on human well-being, livelihoods, and subsequent land-use decisions. All of my research begins with a complex systems background with the aim of understanding the dynamics of human-environment interactions and their consequences for environmental and economic sustainability. Agent-based modeling is my primary tool of choice to understand human-environment interactions, but I also frequently use other land change modeling approaches (e.g., cellular automata, system dynamics, econometrics), spatial statistics, and GIS. I also have expertise in synthesis methods (e.g., meta-analysis) for bringing together leveraging disparate forms of social and environmental data to understand how specific cases (i.e., local) of land-use change contribute to and/or differ from broader-scale (i.e. regional or global) patterns of human-environment interactions and land change outcomes.
In my (infinite) spare time, I hangout with my wife and young sons, am an avid fisherman, love to cook, and will play (or watch) just about any sport.
Here is my CV.
Geography Ph.D. Student (affiliated researcher with the lab since Fall 2018)
My broad research interests are in human-environment interactions and operations research. Specifically, I am interested in hazard vulnerability and resilience, facilities location science, and the geography of crime. My research focuses on examining how the socioecological nature of spaces differentially influences societal outcomes and modeling the spatial and social implications of changes to the environment. I primarily use quantitative methods (e.g., spatial optimization, spatial statistics) and GIS, but I also have experience in qualitative survey research. Prior to joining the University of Alabama, I completed my BS in Geosciences at Virginia Tech and my MS in Geography at the University of Southern Mississippi. My research to date has centered on applications in community corrections, counterdrug interdiction, and emergency management operations. For my dissertation research, I am modeling the spatiotemporal impacts of extreme events to crime, victimization, and protective resource allocation.
Geography Ph.D. Student (joined the lab in Spring 2021)
Broadly my research interests are in the field of environmental social sciences; specifically, I’m interested in studying human-environmental interactions. I would like my research work to contribute towards our understanding of what a more sustainable world can look like and how to ACTUALLY get there. Moreover, my research interests include understanding adoption of conservation practices, evaluation of sustainable practices, participatory natural resource management, social impact assessment, among others. I have good experience with projects involving qualitative and/or mixed-mode methodologies. I have designed both survey questionnaires and interview transcripts for my projects and have conducted online surveys, personal interviews and focus group discussions as well. I also have basic knowledge of softwares like R (statistical tool) and ArcGIS. For my dissertation research here at UA, I plan to focus on understanding farmers’ decision-making processes related to crop choice and adoption of irrigation in Alabama.
If not working, I like to spend my free time reading books (~love fiction), knitting or binge-watching some tv series. I’m also into photography and spend most of the time exploring different photo editing apps on my phone/laptop.
Geography Ph.D. Student (joined the lab in Fall 2021)
My research interests are primarily in the fields of practical GIS and environmental protection and conservation. Specifically, I am interested in exploring the many new ways that GIS technology give geographers to create broadly applicable conservation strategies that can be implemented by local and national governments. My current research is focused on tracking and projection deforestation in preserved lands in Honduras as related to the extension of narco-trafficking illicit agriculture in the region, as well as creating counterfactual models of the region to show how much of an impact said illicit agriculture has had on the nature preserve.
In my spare time I enjoy reading, writing (almost done with my first novel), hiking with my dog, and losing games of Dota2
Geography Ph.D. Student (joined the lab in Spring 2022)
My research interests are particularly in the field of GIS and urban traffic dynamics. I’m interested in exploring the dynamics of human-environment interactions to understand and model the spatial and environmental changes. My primary focus is to examine the implications of illicit supply network response to interdictions. I completed my MS in Geographic Information Engineering at Wuhan University, China. I worked at LIESMARS, Wuhan University for 2 years on analyzing urban dynamics using microwave remote sensing.
In my free time, I play Cricket, Baseball, cook sub-continental food, watch movies(sci-fi), travel, meet new people and learn new culture.
Geography M.S. Student (joined the lab in Spring 2020)
My broad interests lie in human geography and geographic information systems. More specifically, I enjoy all topics related to globalization, trade, crime, wildlife, fossil fuels, and human migration patterns. My current research focuses on the spatial ecology of elk in Southwest Virginia.
In my spare time, I enjoy running, fishing, basketball, reading trivia, and playing guitar.
Geography M.S. Student (joined the lab in Fall 2021)
My research interests are in urban land change and natural disasters particularly landslide and flood. I like working mostly with optical remote sensing data to find out land change trends. I am also interested in cartography, machine learning, spatial data science and web GIS, basically just about anything that makes handling or understanding spatial data easier. I also love teaching concepts or just practical techniques on these subjects.
Whenever time permits, I like playing soccer or watching movies or edit some data on OSM.
Undergraduate Research Assistants
Geography B.S. Student and MBA Student (joined the lab in Summer 2022)
I am an undergraduate Geography student with a minor in Global Health. I am also enrolled in the Manderson School of Business, where I began coursework for my Master of Business Administration in Summer 2022. Upon completion of my undergraduate degree in May 2023, I plan to combine my technical and diverse knowledge of Geography, especially my concentration in Regional, Urban, and Environmental Planning, with the business focus of Supply Chain and Operations Management. Although I assist with several projects in the HEIMA lab, my main interests are in food systems, the effects of circular economy agriculture on sustainable material use, and regional poverty/generational wealth. I am currently pursuing a case study that compares the flows of traditional agricultural systems with systems of circular economies. The aim of this case study is to determine the feasibility of circular economic practices for Alabama’s farms.
In my free time, I enjoy traveling and spending time outside, whether I am hiking, fishing or being chased by my family’s chickens. I also love spending time with friends, playing sand volleyball, cooking, and barista-ing at the best coffee shop in Tuscaloosa.
Geography B.S. Student (joined the lab in Summer 2022)
I am am an undergraduate student studying Remote Sensing and Environmental Policy through New College. My primary areas of interest lie in land use land cover change, GIS, political ecology, and water body conservation . In my current research, I am delving into how Narco trafficking routes impact deforestation patterns throughout South and Central America, with a specific focus on coastal trade networks. I hope to gain a better understanding of how global power structures influence LULCC, especially through illicit networks of capital in the Global South.
Outside of my research, I enjoy hiking, photography, watching movies, cooking, and stargazing!
Dr. Quy Van Khuc
Postdoctoral Research Associate (2018-2019)
Current position: Faculty in Economics and Finance, Phenikaa University, Yen Nghia, Ha Dong, Hanoi, Hanoi, Hanoi, VIET NAM.
M.S. Geography (2017-2019)
Thesis title: "Land-Use Land-Cover Change and the Effects on Hydrology of the North River Basin, Alabama"
Current position: GIS Analyst, City of Tuscaloosa
M.S. Geography (2018-2020)
Thesis title: "Social-ecological systems of sheep ranching, recreation, and large carnivores on multiple-use U.S. public lands"
Current position: Social Scientist with United States Geological Survey, Fort Collins, Colorado
B.S. Student (2019-2021)
B.S. Student (2019-2021)
B.S. Student (2019-2021)
Current position: PhD student in the ICON program at the University of Georgia