Denis Dean

Professor of Geospatial Information Sciences
GR 3.802B
Denis Dean's Webpage
Tags: Geospatial Information Science

Professional Preparation

Ph.D. - Computer Applications in Forestry
Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University - 1991
- Forestry Economics and Planning/Operations Research
The Pennsylvania State University - 1987
B.S. - Forest Recreation Management
Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University - 1984

Research Areas

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.


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 ? - Publication
Denis J. Dean, Jose Valdez and Anne Sjostrom. In Review. A Geospatial Approach to Finding Optimal Locations for Wildfire Fuel Treatments. Transactions in GIS. ? - Publication
Dean, Denis J. In Review. Predicting Probabilities and/or Actual Binary Events: A Review of Existing GIS/Neural Network Techniques. International Journal of GIS. ? - Publication
Dean, Denis J. and Anna Brandis. In Review. A Kriging Variant Based on Neural Network-Derived Derived Experimental Semivariograms. International Journal of GIS. ? - Publication
Dean, Denis J. In preparation. Detecting Spatial Correlations in the Presence of Confounding Factors. Cartography and Geographic Information Science. ? - Publication
Dean, Denis J. and Alicia C. Lizarraga-Blackard. 2007. Modeling the Magnitude and Spatial Distribution of Aesthetic Impacts. Environment and Planning B 34: 121-138. 2007 - Publication
Riggs, Philip D. and Denis J. Dean. 2007. An Investigation into the Causes of Errors and Inconsistencies in Predicted Viewsheds. Transactions in GIS 11(2): 175-196. 2007 - Publication
Dean, Denis J. 2007. Characterizing Spatial Databases via Their Derivation: A Complement to Content Ontologies. Transactions in GIS 11(3): 399-412. 2007 - Publication
Dean, Denis J. 2005. Deriving New Minimum Cost Pathways from Existing Paths. Cartography and Geographic Information Science. 32(1):47-60. 2005 - Publication
Dean, Denis J. 2005. Measuring Arrangement Similarity Between Thematic Raster Databases Using a Quadtree-Based Approach. Lecture Notes in Computer Science 3799: 125-141. 2005 - Publication


Professor and Head
The University of Texas at Dallas [2008–Present]
School of Economic, Political and Policy Science
Executive committee member
Colorado State University's Information Science and Technology Center (ISTeC) [2004–Present]
Colorado State University's Information Science and Technology Center (ISTeC) ( research advisory committee [2004–Present]
College of Natural Resources representative
Colorado State University's Information Science and Technology Center (ISTeC) [2003–Present]
Colorado State University's President's committee of web-based instruction [2001–Present]
Colorado State University [2001–2006]
Colorado State University [2001–2006]
GIS Advisory Committee
Aims Community College [1998–2002]
Associate Professor of Geospatial Sciences
Colorado State University [1997–2008]
College of Natural Resources
Centro Agronomico Tropical De Investigacion Y Ensenanza (CATIE), Turrialba, Costa Rica [1996–Present]


GIS as a Vehicle for Negotiated National Forest Planning.
1994–1994 1994. USFS Community Planning Workshop. Ithaca, New York.
GIS Applications in Business.
1996–1996 1996. Modern Marketing Form 1996. Fort Collins, Colorado.
An Accuracy Assessment of Various GIS-Based Viewshed Delineation Techniques.
2001–2001 2001 GIS in the Rockies Conference, Denver, Colorado.
Spatial Modeling Using GIS.
1996–1996 1996. Indexing Resource Data for Forest Health Decision Making. Pingree Park, Colorado.
Forest Viewshed Delineation.
1997–1997 1997. Presented to the Taiwan Forest Research Institute. Nanhsi, Taiwan.

Additional Information

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
Administrative Experience
  • 2004-Present: Co-chair of the Research Advisory Committee and member of the Executive Committee of CSUs 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 Universitys College of Natural Resources, I coordinated the GIS teaching activities of four faculty members within the program.

News Articles

Dean Selected for School of Economic, Political and Policy Sciences
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.
EPPS Hires Geospatial Information Sciences, Economics Experts
The School of Economic, Political and Policy Sciences (EPPS) at UT Dallas hired three tenure and tenure-track faculty members this fall. 
The recent hires join the geospatial information sciences and economics programs. The school has 61 tenured/tenure-track faculty members, with an additional 18 full-time senior lecturers who educate more than 1,300 students


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


Linking Watershed Characteristics with Flow Regime & Geomorphic Context to Diagnose Water Quality Impairment at Multiple Scales - Phase II.
$504,000 - Environmental Protection Agency [2008–2011]
Linking Watershed Characteristics with Flow Regime & Geomorphic Context to Diagnose Water Quality Impairment at Multiple Scales
$624,536 - U.S. Environmental Protection Agency [2003–2007]
Landscape Characterization Over Time.
$55,115 - USDA Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station. [2000–2002]
Template for the Development of a SNAP-like Software Program for USFS Project-Level Planning.
$79,540 - Template for the Development of a SNAP-like Software Program for USFS Project-Level Planning. [2000–2002]
Development of a Flexible, Standardized Methodology for Optimizing Fuel Treatment Program Across Space and Time
$105,021 - Joint Fire Science Program. [1999–2001]