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Week of March 26th, 2018

Please send any news, announcements, and citations to by noon on Monday for publication in the same week’s issue.

Events (all in 2049 NHB - Russell Seminar Room)

Geography Graduate Student Association (GGSA) Annual Speaker Series
Thursday, March 29th, 3:00 p.m.
Dr. Tania Murray Li
  University of Toronto
Commons, Co-ops, and Corporations: Indonesia's 21st Century Land Reform

In 2016, the Indonesian government announced a major land reform program, designed in part by activists in its agrarian and indigenous peoples’ movements. The program plans to divide the population into distinct types, who are expected to manage land according to their unique customs and capacities.

In this talk, Dr. Li will examine the three "C’s" foregrounded in the Indonesian reform program: commons, co-ops, and corporations; and the diverse parties who have mobilized to promote them. She will then address two other "C’s" obscured by the picture of egalitarian, cooperative communities, nurtured by corporations and a reform-producing state: capitalism and class differentiation among the people, and the crony-corporate cabals that reach into every layer of Indonesian society.
[full abstract + bio]
Monday, April 2nd, 3:00 p.m.
Pronoy Rai Geography & GIS PhD Student
Social Geographies of Seasonal Labor Migration in Rural Western India
In this dissertation, I study the seasonal migration of landless communities in rural western India. My research explains how labor migration has transformed gender, caste, and class relations in the drylands of Maharashtra state in India. I study labor migration as a social process, which accommodates the flows of capital yet expands the literature to account for the flows of ideas and norms...[Read more]
Friday, April 6th, 2:30 p.m.
Geography & GIS Graduate Students - AAG Practice Talks
Graduate students: Sign up here for a 20-minute time slot to practice your AAG presentation, and receive feedback from faculty and fellow graduate students.


Associate Professor Trevor Birkenholtz received the Robert McC Netting Award from the AAG Cultural and Political Ecology (CAPE) specialty group in 2017, and he will present the 2018 Robert McC Netting plenary lecture on Thursday, April 12th during the AAG Annual Meeting in New Orleans. His talk, The (Re)Feminization of Agrarian Labor: Women, Water and the Efficiency Paradox in North India, draws on a case from northern India to examine the relationship between drip irrigation and agrarian labor.

The Geography Graduate Student Association has created a Google Sheet where all Geography & GIS faculty and graduate students who are presenting at AAG can share the title, time, and location of their presentation.
The Young and the Fretless, a string band from Champaign-Urbana featuring Professor Emeritus Tom Bassett, has put to music Carl Sandburg’s unpublished poem entitled “A Revolver.” The poem evokes the power of guns to have “the last word.” The song was recorded to support high school students across the United States who are standing up and demanding action on gun violence. The poem was discovered in January 2013 by Ernie Gullerud, a retired university professor, who was indexing Sandburg’s personal papers at the University of Illinois Library. It was less than a month after the mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, and Gullerud was struck by the relevance of Sandburg’s poem.

“A Revolver” (03:42) [Soundcloud]. Lyrics by Carl Sandburg. Music by Tom Bassett. Arranged by The Young and the Fretless. Recorded by Randy Cordle. Inspiration from Carol Spindel. Special thanks to John Steichen, Paul Steichen Polega, and the Barbara Hogenson Agency for permission to use the Sandburg poem.

Graduate Students

Donald Planey (advisor: Prof. Julie Cidell) will attend the Summer Institute for Economic Geography in Ghent, Belgium - a competitive, professional/academic mentoring event featuring talks by renowned economic geographers. The institute is co-sponsored by the journals Economic Geography and Environment & Planning A: Economy and Space.
Sign up here for a 20-minute time slot to practice your AAG presentation, and receive feedback from faculty and fellow graduate students.


The deadline for Summer 2018 Howard Roepke Scholarship applications is Wednesday, April 4th. Application webforms for:

The Siebel Center for Design (SC4D) is due to open on campus in January 2020. The Center will enable undergraduate students from all disciplines to experience design thinking, design making, and design learning- by working in multidisciplinary team projects, within and outside the curriculum. To help with preliminary planning, SC4D is asking undergraduates to complete an Engagement, Involvement, and Experience survey.


Chunyuan Diao & Le Wang. (2018). Landsat time series-based multiyear spectral angle clustering (MSAC) model to monitor the inter-annual leaf senescence of exotic saltcedar. Remote Sensing of Environment, 209, 581-593.