Somayeh Dodge

I am Somayeh Dodge. I serve as an Assistant Professor of Spatial Data Science and run the MOVE Research Lab at the Department of Geography at the UC Santa Barbara. I am a recipient of the prestigious NSF CAREER Award 2021 for the project CAREER: Modeling Movement and Behavior Responses to Environmental Disruptions. I received my Ph.D. in Geography with a specialization in Geographic Information Science (GIScience) from the University of Zurich in November 2011. I hold an MS in GIS Engineering and a BS in Geomatics Engineering from the KNT University of Technology in Tehran, Iran. Before joining the UC Santa Barbara faculty in July 2019, I worked as an Assistant Professor at the University of Minnesota, Twin Cities (2016-2019) and the University of Colorado, Colorado Springs (2013-2016). Prior to that, I completed two postdoctoral fellowships at the Department of Civil, Environmental, and Geodetic Engineering at The Ohio State University (2012-2013) and at the University of Zurich (2011-2012) on Computational Movement Analytics. My research focuses on understanding and modeling of movement in human and ecological systems. I develop computational data analysis, knowledge discovery, modeling, and visualization techniques to study how movement patterns are formed in dynamic systems across spatial and temporal scales. For more information about my research and teaching, please see

Current Graduate Students

Danial Alizadeh

My name is Danial Alizadeh. I am a garduate student in Geographical Information Science at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Prior to that, I obtained my MS degree in GIS engineering from the University of K. N. Toosi University of Technology, Tehran, Iran. I also graduated with a BS degree in Surveying-Civil engineering from the University of Tehran, Tehran, Iran. My research interest primarily focuses on Urban-Human Mobility analytics. More specifically, my research aims to increase our understanding of how people move within urban or non-urban settings and find prospective associations between movement patterns and environmental factors. To do so, I am interested in using machine learning and deep learning approaches to extract movement patterns from a large volume of aggregated mobility or trajectory data. To find out more about my research, please check out my Google scholar and Linkedin page.

Seonga Cho

My name is Seonga Cho. I am a graduate student with a focus on Geographic Information Science at the Geography Department of the University of California, Santa Barbara, USA. I received my MA and BA degree from the Department of Geography, Seoul National University, Republic of Korea. My research focus is on urban spatiotemporal movement data and accessibility analysis. Also, I am interested in spatial optimization and housing problem in urban areas.

Yifei Liu

I am Yifei Liu, a Ph.D. student at UCSB Geography Department. I received my B.S. and M.S. degree in Ecology from Fudan University (Shanghai, China) in 2018 and 2021, respectively. My research focuses on movement ecology and ecosystem dynamics, especially the impact of human interference and land-use change on the movement behavior of tigers and leopards in Thailand, assisted with spatial data science and spatiotemporal modelling.

Evgeny Noi

My name is Evgeny Noi. I am a quantitative geographer doing research on locational theory pertaining to urban environment. My current focus is on geoAI and smart city policies. Previously, I worked in consulting capacities at the United Nations, Iowa Initiative for Sustainable Communities, Swedish Institute for Public Administration (SIPU) and the city of Moscow. Prior to joining the lab, I was merging big spatial data and machine learning analysis in prototyping smart city solutions for Moscow IT Department. I hold a BA in Political Science from Irkutsk State University, Russia and an MS in Urban and Regional Planning from the University of Iowa, USA.

Mary S photoMary Salami

I am Mary Salami. I am a graduate student at UCSB Geography. Before that, I received my B.S. degree in Surveying and Geoinformatics from Obafemi Awolowo University, Nigeria. My research focuses on Spatiotemporal Data Analysis, Spatial Artificial Intelligence, and Spatial Information Retrieval. My main focus is on developing machine learning models to understand human mobility patterns during disease outbreak/natural disasters. For additional information about me, check out my personal website.

Rongxiang Su photoRongxiang Su

I am Rongxiang Su, a Ph.D student at the Department of Geography, University of California Santa Barbara. I obtained my M.S. degree in GIS from Wuhan University, China and my B.S. degree in GIS from Hefei University of Technology, China. My research is focused on understanding human mobility patterns, travel behavior and urban dynamics using spatiotemporal analytics, discrete choice modeling, and machine learning techniques. More information can be found on my personal website.

Zijian Wan

My name is Zijian Wan. I am a graduate student with a focus on movement modeling and analysis, often in a big geospatial data context and using approaches in spatiotemporal data mining. My research interests lie at the intersection of GIScience, spatial data science and machine learning. I received my BS in Geographic Information Science from Wuhan University, China, in 2020. With the increasing availability of a massive amount of movement data and the advancement of data analytics to explore the full potential of spatiotemporal data, we can investigate movement for a variety of application domains, such as transportation and wildlife migration study in which behaviors and movement patterns are key topics. Please find more information about me on my personal website.

Lab Affiliates

Dr. Crystal Bae (University of Chicago)

Dr. Bae is a former MOVE Postdoctoral Researcher (2020-2021), working on the intersection of geographic movement visualization and spatial cognition. After her Postdoc in the MOVE lab, she accepted a position of Instructional Assistant Professor at the University of Chicago. She is currently collaborating with the MOVE lab to develop cognitive studies on evaluating cartographic visualizations for movement data. She holds a Ph.D. in Geography with an emphasis in Cognitive Science from the University of California, Santa Barbara. Her dissertation work focused on how dyads (pairs) and individuals carried out wayfinding plans during situated navigation. Her previous work includes the assessment of residents’ cognitive boundaries of Koreatown, Los Angeles with relation to home locations, socio-demographics, and travel behavior. More information is available on her personal website.