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Plenary Sessions and Special Events

Plenary Sessions

Noam Chomsky Interview - A Continuing Conversation with Geographers
AAG Annual Meeting Opening Session & Presidential Plenary
Sarah Bednarz’ Past President's Address: “Locating Geography Education” and AAG Presidential Achievement Award Presentation
- Honorary Geographer James Hansen
Uncertainty and Context in Geography and GIScience Featured Theme Opening Plenary
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Uncertainty and Context in Geography and GIScience Featured Theme Closing Plenary

Featured Sessions

Need for Public Intellectuals in a Trump America: Strategies for Communication, Engagement, and Advocacy
The 2016 U.S. Elections: Implications for Geography and Beyond
Special session featuring Rush Holt, CEO of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS): "Advancing Science in the Public Arena" 
A New Map of Global Ecological Marine Units (EMUs) - An Environmental Stratification Approach
Linking Geographical Science to Policy: Opportunities at the U.S. National Academies of Science
David Harvey Featured Lecture: "Marx, Capital and the Madness of Economic Reason"
Physical Geography Symposium Keynote Lecture
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AAG Business Meeting
GIS & Technology Poster Session
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Human Geography Poster Session I
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Human Geography Poster Session II
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Physical Geography Poster Session I and Happy Hour Reception
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Physical Geography Poster Session II

Special Events

- AAG International Reception: Celebrating the International Encyclopedia of Geography
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World Geography Bowl
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AAG Awards Luncheon
- Department Chairs Luncheon


WEDNESDAY, APRIL 5

AAG Physical Geography Symposium Keynote Lecture: Human Environmental Interactions and the Legacy of Karl Butzer in the Physical Geography and Beyond 1 - Featured Session
Wednesday, April 5, 4:40 p.m. - 6:20 p.m.
Room: Room 302, Hynes, Third Level

Organizers: Timothy Beach, University of Texas at Austin; Tripti Bhattacharya; Carlos E. Cordova, Oklahoma State University
Chair: Timothy Beach, University of Texas at Austin
Introduction: Timothy Beach, University of Texas at Austin
Speakers:
Sheryl Luzzadder-Beach, University of Texas-Austin; Timothy Beach, University of Texas at Austin, The Legacy of Karl Butzer in Physical Geography and Beyond.
C Neil Roberts, University of Plymouth, Good, bad or ugly? Human transformation of the Mediterranean world.
B. L. Turner II,Arizona State University, Reflections on Karl W. Butzer's Cultural Ecology.

The long-term interplay of humans and the physical environment is one of Physical Geography's oldest and richest traditions.  The idea has evolved into many directions from Alexander von Humboldt to 2016 AAG Physical Geography Symposium on the Anthropocene.  One of the most important contributors to this tradition of studying human interactions with the environment was Prof. Karl W. Butzer, who in many senses founded the field and coined the term geoarchaeology.  Butzer had among the profession's most decorated careers in our discipline's history.

AAG Annual Meeting Opening Session and Presidential Plenary: "Geographies of Bread and Water in the 21st Century"– Plenary Session
Wednesday, April 5, 6:30 p.m. - 8:30 p.m.
Room: Ballroom B, Hynes, Third Level

Welcoming Remarks: Douglas Richardson, American Association of Geographers
Organizer and Moderator: Glen M. MacDonald, University of California - Los Angeles
Panelists: Ruth DeFries, Columbia University; Peter Gleick, Pacific Institute
Discussants: Laura-Anne Minkoff-Zern, Syracuse University; William G. Moseley, Macalester College 

Burgeoning global population along with increasing appetite for high-protein or resource demanding food choices may double demands on world agriculture by 2050. At the same time groundwater depletion and climate change are negatively impacting the availability of sufficient water to meet agricultural and domestic freshwater demands in many regions. Compounding these challenges are socioeconomic forces, including armed conflicts and state collapse that negatively affect agricultural productivity, food transference and water resources. The challenges to food and water security over the 21st century represent an increasing and potentially existential threat to global society. These issues are fundamentally geographical in nature and should form a central research and educational focus of geography.


THURSDAY, APRIL 6

GIS & Technology Poster Session - Featured Session
Thursday, April 6, 8:00 a.m. - 11:40 a.m.
Room: Hall C, Hynes, Second Level

Poster setup: 7:30 a.m. - 8:00 a.m.
Poster display and discussion: 8:00 a.m. - 11:40 a.m.

Need for Public Intellectuals in a Trump America: Strategies for Communication, Engagement, and Advocacy - Featured Session
Thursday, April 6, 10:00 a.m. - 11:40 a.m.
Room: Room 312, Hynes, Third Level

Organizer and Chair: Derek H. Alderman, University of Tennessee
Panelists: Derek H. Alderman, University of Tennessee; Meg Gilley, COMPASS; Joshua F. Inwood, Pennsylvania State University; Sriram Khe, Western Oregon University; William G. Moseley, Macalester College; Rebecca Maria Torres, University of Texas at Austin; Joseph S. Wood, University of Baltimore; Willie Jamal Wright, University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill

In the immediate wake of the election of President Donald Trump, it has become especially apparent that the country will likely face great challenges in defending civil rights and liberties, advocating for the support of science and academic freedom, and enacting an inclusive worldview outside of nationalistic and market imperatives.  The need for public intellectualism in Geography, while long important and under-developed, will grow significantly as we address and even challenge policies that threaten some of the core values of the discipline.
The American Association of Geographers has already begun to respond to major issues and controversies facing the geographical community in Trump America, but no one organization has the capacity to respond meaningfully and completely to every challenge we will likely encounter.  It will be necessary to complement actions taken by the AAG with geographers, working individually and collectively, within their own communities, universities, and workplaces to effect change.  Yet, many of us were not trained to move outside the Academy or wider industry circles to engage with the public, policy communities, and the media. And in some instances, our employers have discouraged such practices. 
This panel brings together voices who can speak to the urgent need for more public intellectuals in Geography while also sharing their own experiences, strategies, and practical advice in the areas of public communication, engagement, and advocacy.  Panelists will address a number of tools at the disposal of public intellectuals: the writing of op-eds and columns/blogs, conducting interviews with the media and the strategic use of social media, organizing of teach-ins and public forums on issues, serving on public commissions and inquiries, informing and holding elected officials accountable, working with community groups and organizations, and carrying out other forms of scholar-activism and public engagement.

Uncertainty and Context in Geography and GIScience Featured Theme Opening Plenary - Featured Session
Thursday, April 6, 10:00 a.m. - 11:40 a.m.
Room: Independence West, Sheraton, Second Floor

Organizers: Uncertainty and Context Featured Theme Scientific Committee
Chair: Tim Schwanen, University of Oxford
Discussant: David Berrigan, U.S. National Institutes of Health - National Cancer Institute
Panelists: Mei-Po Kwan, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; Michael F. Goodchild, University of California

Department Chairs Luncheon - Special Event

Thursday, April 6, 11:40 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.
Room: Room 210, Hynes, Second Level 

The Department Chairs’ Luncheon, chaired by AAG Vice President Derek Alderman, is an opportunity for existing or incoming Department or Program Chairs to discuss issues of administrative importance and share strategies for success. There is a $35 registration fee to cover the cost of the lunch. Please see the AAG Registration Desk if you wish to register for this event.

Special session featuring Rush Holt, CEO of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS): "Advancing Science in the Public Arena" - Featured Session
Thursday, April 6, 11:50 a.m. - 1:10 p.m.
Room: Room 103, Hynes, Third Level

Organizer and Chair: Douglas Richardson, American Association of Geographers
Speaker: Rush Holt, AAAS
Discussants: David Berrigan, U.S. National Institutes of Health - National Cancer Institute; Antoinette WinklerPrins, National Science Foundation

Rush D. Holt, Ph.D., chief executive officer of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), will deliver a featured talk entitled, "Advancing Science in the Public Arena." Holt is a Phi Beta Kappa graduate of Carleton College in Northfield, Minnesota, and he holds M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in physics from New York University. He is an elected fellow of AAAS, the American Physical Society, and Sigma Xi, and he holds honorary degrees from multiple universities. He is also a former Congressman and Jeopardy Champion.

A New Map of Global Ecological Marine Units (EMUs) - An Environmental Stratification Approach - Featured Session
Thursday, April 6, 1:20 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Room: Room 200, Hynes, Second Level

Organizers: American Association of Geographers
Introduction: Becky Pendergast, American Association of Geographers
Speakers: Roger G Sayre, PhD, United States Geological Survey; Dawn J. Wright, Esri; Charlie Frye, Esri; Sean P Breyer, Esri; Kevin A Butler, PhD, Esri; Keith Van Graafeiland, Esri, A New Map of Global Ecological Marine Units (EMUs) - An Environmental Stratification Approach.

In this U.S. Geological Survey-sponsored session, we will present a new global ecological marine units (EMU) map and booklet developed in an innovative public/private/NGO/academia partnership between the USGS, Esri, and scientists from other government organizations, NGOs, and universities. An AAG-published booklet characterizing the EMU has been provided to all conferencegoers to this meeting, and we will describe the work further in a set of presentations and live demonstrations of the data and apps. This work is a first-of-its-kind effort to produce a globally comprehensive and consistent, data derived, and true 3D marine ecosystems map and dataset. The EMU resources are open access, and include an EMU Explorer tool which allows anyone with an internet connection to query any point on the surface of the ocean and be provided with physical and chemical environmental information from the sea surface to the seafloor, and a description of the EMU to which the point belongs. The EMU data are intended to be useful for a variety of research and management applications, including climate change impact assessments, ecosystem accounting, and marine protected area network planning.

Human Geography Poster Session I - Featured Session
Thursday, April 6, 1:20 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Room: Hall C, Hynes, Second Level

Poster setup: 1:00 p.m. - 1:20 p.m.
Poster display and discussion: 1:20 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.

Noam Chomsky - A Continuing Conversation with Geographers - Plenary Session
Thursday, April 6, 5:20 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.
Room: Ballroom B, Hynes, Third Level

Organizer and Moderator: Douglas Richardson, American Association of Geographers
Speaker: Noam Chomsky, MIT 

The AAG has selected Noam Chomsky as its 2017 AAG Atlas Award recipient. Chomsky will engage in a conversational interview with AAG Executive Director Doug Richardson, as he has several times previously. The audience will have an opportunity to ask questions following the interview.
The AAG Atlas Award is designed to recognize and celebrate outstanding, internationally-recognized leaders who advance world understanding in exceptional ways. The image of Atlas bearing the weight of the world on his shoulders is a powerful metaphor for this award program, as our nominees are those who have taken the weight of the world on their shoulders and moved it forward, whether in science, politics, scholarship, or the arts. Primatologist Jane Goodall, international human rights and political leader Mary Robinson, and civil rights icon Julian Bond have been the recipients of the first three AAG Atlas Awards.


FRIDAY, APRIL 7

Human Geography Poster Session II - Featured Session
Friday, April 7, 8:00 a.m. - 11:40 a.m.
Room: Hall C, Hynes, Second Level 

Poster setup: 7:30 a.m. - 8:00 a.m.
Poster display and discussion: 8:00 a.m. - 11:40 a.m.

Honorary Geographer James Hansen - Featured Session
Friday, April 7, 10:00 a.m. - 11:40 a.m.
Room: Room 210, Hynes, Second Level

Organizer: American Association of Geographers
Moderator: Glen M. MacDonald, University of California - Los Angeles
Speaker: James Hansen, Columbia University 

James Hansen, known for his climate research and his Congressional testimony on climate change that raised awareness of global warming, will deliver a featured talk on climate change, moderated by AAG President Glen MacDonald. He will also be honored as the 2017 AAG Honorary Geographer during the AAG Awards Luncheon.

Sarah Bednarz’ Past President's Address: “Locating Geography Education” and AAG Presidential Achievement Award Presentation - Plenary Session
Friday, April 7, 12:00 p.m. - 1:10 p.m.
Room: Room 312, Hynes, Third Level

Organizer: American Association of Geographers
Introduction: Glen M. MacDonald, University of California - Los Angeles
Speaker: Sarah Witham Bednarz, Texas A&M University 

AAG Past President Sarah Witham Bednarz will explore the evolving role, nature, and relevance of geography education as viewed by former presidents of the AAG from 1910 to the present. AAG presidential addresses have, at times, commented directly on education issues; at other times the topic has been avoided, if not ignored. What changes have occurred over time in how geography education is perceived and valued? What persistent educational concerns has the discipline wrestled with? How has the discipline, represented by its leaders, addressed broader social, cultural, and political factors that affect the production of new geographic knowledge and the reproduction of geographers?
Bednarz will confer the AAG Presidential Achievement Award to Roger Downs, professor of geography at Pennsylvania State University, during the close of her Past President’s Address. She remarked, “Downs is a scholar, excellent administrator, and guiding light for geographers interested in teaching and learning.”

Physical Geography Poster Session I - Featured Session
Friday, April 7, 1:20 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Room: Hall C, Hynes, Second Level

Poster setup: 1:00 p.m. - 1:20 p.m.
Poster display and discussion: 1:20 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
A reception for the Symposium on Physical Geography: “Human-Environment Interactions” will take place in the poster area from 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm.

International Reception: Celebrating the International Encyclopedia of Geography - Special Event
Friday, April 7, 7:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.   
Room: Ballroom B, Hynes, Third Level

Join us in celebrating the release of The International Encyclopedia of Geography! This reception is an opportunity to see old friends and meet colleagues at the outset of the AAG Annual Meeting. There will be food, drinks, music, and interaction with IEG authors and editors. All attendees are invited to attend. Two free drink tickets are provided in your registration packet. Music will be provided by Flipside.


SATURDAY, APRIL 8

Physical Geography Poster Session II - Featured Session
Saturday, April 8, 8:00 a.m. - 11:40 a.m.
Room: Hall C, Hynes, Second Level

Poster setup: 7:30 a.m. - 8:00 a.m.
Poster display and discussion: 8:00 a.m. - 11:40 a.m.

Uncertainty and Context in Geography and GIScience Featured Theme Closing Plenary - Featured Session
Saturday, April 8, 11:50 a.m. - 1:10 p.m.
Room: Independence West, Sheraton, Second Floor

Organizer and Chair: Mei-Po Kwan, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Panelists: Tim Schwanen, University of Oxford; Wenzhong Shi, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University; Jamie Pearce, University of Edinburgh
Discussant: Daniel A. Griffith, U. of Texas at Dallas

Linking Geographical Science to Policy: Opportunities at the U.S. National Academies of Science - Featured Session
Saturday, April 8, 1:20 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Room: Room 102, Hynes, Plaza Level

Organizer and Chair: Carol P. Harden, University of Tennessee
Panelists: Anthony J. Bebbington, Clark University; Nancy L. Jackson, New Jersey Institute Of Technology; William D. Solecki, Hunter College - CUNY; Marilyn A. Brown, Georgia Institute of Technology; Michael Jerrett, University of California
Discussants: Thomas J. Baerwald, National Science Foundation; Douglas Richardson, American Association of Geographers

The Geographical Sciences Committee (GSC) of the U.S. National Academies of Science exists to provide high-quality, objective, scientific, technical, and policy advice and recommendations to society and to government at all levels, i.e., to provide geographical science to shape policy. The Committee responds to specific requests from federal agencies and other organizations and can also initiate workshops or studies to address important contemporary problems by analyzing and synthesizing existing knowledge. This panel discussion is intended to better acquaint AAG members with the work of the Geographical Sciences Committee and to engage geographers in an open conversation about important societal issues that could or should be informed by geographical science. Contributions from current committee members and representatives of organizations that have supported the GSC's work will introduce the structure and function of the Geographical Sciences Committee within the National Academies, with examples of the Committee's activities and products, and an open discussion will solicit and consider topics for future initiatives.

David Harvey Featured Lecture: "Marx, Capital and the Madness of Economic Reason" - Featured Session
Saturday, April 8, 3:20 p.m. - 5:00 p.m.
Room: Ballroom B, Hynes, Third Level

Organizers: Douglas Richardson, American Association of Geographers; Derek H. Alderman, University of Tennessee
Introduction: Derek H. Alderman, University of Tennessee
Speaker: David Harvey, CUNY

David Harvey, one of the most influential figures in geography and urban studies, and among the most cited intellectuals of all time across the humanities and social sciences, will deliver a featured lecture, “Marx, Capital and the Madness of Economic Reason.”
For geographers and non-geographers across many disciplines and languages, David Harvey has established the importance of space and uneven geographical development to the survival of capitalist accumulation, the perpetuation of inequality, and the rise of neoliberalism. His body of work demonstrates the highly creative and consequential place that geographers can have in engaging in and shaping broader transdisciplinary discussions and debates.
David Harvey will also receive the AAG Brunn Award for Creativity in Geography during the AAG Awards Luncheon on April 9, 2017. This annual AAG award recognizes a geographer who has demonstrated originality, creativity, and significant intellectual breakthroughs in geography.

The 2016 U.S. Elections: Implications for Geography and Beyond - Featured Session
Saturday, April 8, 5:20 p.m. - 7:00 p.m.
Room: Room 312, Hynes, Third Level

Organizer and Moderator: Glen M. MacDonald, University of California - Los Angeles 
Panelists: Sarah Witham Bednarz, Texas A&M University; Alexander B. Murphy, University of Oregon; Derek H. Alderman, University of Tennessee; Victoria A. Lawson, University of Washington; Julie Winkler, Michigan State University; Glen M. MacDonald, University of California - Los Angeles
Discussant: Douglas Richardson, American Association of Geographers

World Geography Bowl - Special Event
Saturday, April 8, 7:00 p.m. - 11:00 p.m.
Room: Rooms 101-105, Hynes, Plaza Level

Student teams from the AAG's regional divisions will compete in a round-robin tournament starting at 7:00 p.m. in Rooms 101-105 at the Hynes Convention Center. The championship round will begin at approximately 10:00 pm.


SUNDAY, APRIL 9

2017 AAG Awards Luncheon - Special Event
Sunday, April 9, 11:50 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.
Room: Constitution Ballroom, Sheraton, Second Floor

Join colleagues and friends in honoring recipients of AAG Honors and other awards and prizes. The Awards Luncheon will be held on Sunday, April 9 in the Constitution Ballroom of the Sheraton Hotel from 11:50 a.m. - 2:00 pm.  

The following Honors will be presented:

AAG Lifetime Achievement Honors
Ruth Fincher, University of Melbourne
David Robinson, Rutgers University

AAG Distinguished Scholarship Honors
Michael Storper, University of California, Los Angeles
Patrick Bartlein, University of Oregon 

AAG Ronald F. Abler Distinguished Service Honors
Kent Mathewson, Louisiana State University
Julie Winkler, Michigan State University 

AAG Distinguished Teaching Award
Michael Pretes, University of Northern Alabama 

Other awards that will be presented at the Luncheon include:
AAG Community College Awards, AAG Dissertation, and Research Grants, AAG Marcus Fund for Physical Geography, J. Warren Nystrom Dissertation Award, Marble-Boyle Undergraduate Achievement Awards, AAG Globe and Meridian Book Awards, AAG Program Excellence Award, AAG Susan Hardwick Excellence in Mentoring Award, Harold Rose Award for Anti-Racism Research and Practice, Stan Brunn Award for Creativity in Geography, Humboldt Award for Enduring Scholarship in Geography, and announcements of Honorary Geographer, Atlas Award, and Presidential Achievement Award.

Additionally, 50-year AAG members and recipients of Specialty Group awards and honors will be recognized during the Luncheon.

AAG Business Meeting - Special Event
Sunday, April 9, 2:00 p.m. - 3:00 p.m.
Room: Fairfax, Sheraton, Third Floor

AAG officers will present their annual reports. All are welcome to attend.