Annemarie Schneider

Position title: Associate Professor of Environmental Studies


Phone: (608) 890-0557

Annemarie Schneider (PhD, Boston University Geography and Environment) is an Associate Professor at the Nelson Institute’s Center for Sustainability and the Global Environment, and an affiliate faculty member in the Department of Geography and the Center for Demography and Ecology (CDE).  Her research is focused at SAGE, while her teaching spans multiple schools and departments at the University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Prof. Schneider’s current projects focus on transforming the study of urban areas from local investigation to one of comparative analysis in support of global environmental change research.  Despite growing recognition of their important and complex role in economic, political and ecological systems across the world, cities and urban areas have been understudied in the analysis of global environmental change.  The core of Prof. Schneider’s research, therefore, examines the causes and consequences of land cover change in urban and peri-urban environments, specifically the demographic, economic and policy changes responsible for rapid urbanization and urban sprawl, as well as the local- to global-scale environmental impacts that result.

Prof. Schneider’s most recent research efforts have focused on monitoring urban change across large areas, including  comparative analysis of urban trajectories, land use patterns, and population growth.  Prior to her efforts, it has been impossible to compare cities due to differences in census timing, data availability/quality, and most critically, the considerable variability in how cities are defined by population threshold, functional area, or administrative boundaries.  Prof. Schneider’s research has focused on developing a consistent methodology for mapping urban expansion using multiple types of earth observation satellite imagery and census data, and developing a consistent approach for defining what constitutes an urban agglomeration (both within and across countries and city sizes).  This work is centered on East-Southeast Asia (her current efforts extend this project to a global scale), one of the fastest urbanizing regions in the world.  Her projects have been funded by NASA, the National Science Foundation, the National Academy of Sciences, and the World Bank.

Graduate Students

Thank you for investigating opportunities in my research lab!  Students interested in pursuing graduate studies at SAGE should look closely at the programs in the Nelson Institute for Environmental Studies.  My Masters and PhD students typically enroll in the Environment and Resources Program, with minors in Geography, Computer Science, or Urban Planning.  I am also actively involved in advising students in the Geography Department, so take a look at these pages for application information as well.

Most of my students develop dual proficiencies: students acquire a rich background in theories and concepts in geography, urban studies, and environmental science, while at the same time completing technical training in geostatistical methods (data mining and data fusion techniques, geostatistical analysis). The idea is that students develop an advanced skill set that they can use to answer compelling research questions related to the environmental aspects of urbanization and land cover change.