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Phone: 407.823.1030


Dr. Timothy L. Hawthorne is an assistant professor of geographic information systems (GIS) in the department of sociology. He is a broadly trained human geographer with deep interests in citizen science GIS, community geography, qualitative GIS, and critical GIS.  Community geography and citizen science GIS are subfields within geography that seek to engage academics and community organizations/residents in shared knowledge production focused on community-engaged research that benefits real-world communities.  Qualitative GIS and critical GIS both seek to critically examine ways to extend the capacities and applications of conventional GIS approaches.  You can learn more about Dr. Hawthorne’s work on his research site at Most of Dr. Hawthorne’s research and teaching utilizes innovative methods integrating qualitative data and mixed methods into GIS analysis.  His published work focuses on: 1) accessibility to healthcare, social services, urban greenspaces, and higher education; 2) critical GIS and qualitative GIS including new methodologies such as “satisfaction-adjusted distance measures” to healthcare providers and “critical reflection mapping methodologies” for examining the socio-spatial perceptions of new research sites; and 3) geographic education, service learning, and international education. Dr. Hawthorne earned his PhD in Geography in 2010 from The Department of Geography at The Ohio State University where he worked under the direction of Dr. Mei-Po Kwan.  He received his M.A. in Geography in 2005 from the Department of Geology and Geography at West Virginia University where he worked under the direction of Dr. Daniel Weiner.  Dr. Hawthorne is also a 2003 graduate of Ohio Wesleyan University where he received a Bachelor of Arts degree majoring in Geography with a minor in English where he was advised by Dr. John Krygier. Dr. Hawthorne is Principal Investigator of the Citizen Science GIS Research Experiences for Undergraduates (REU) Site in Orlando and Belize along with Dr. Christy C. Visaggi of Georgia State University.  The REU Site is funded by a $374,480 grant from National Science Foundation (Award #1560015).  The REU integrates undergraduates from all disciplines into Dr. Hawthorne’s community-based, international research focused on social and environmental disparities in Hopkins, Belize. Dr. Hawthorne is also Co-Principal Investigator on a $1,600,000 grant from the National Science Foundation Coupled-Natural Human Systems Program (Award #1617374).  The CNH-L Award: “Restoration and Resilience in Coupled Human-Natural Systems: Reciprocal Dynamics of a Coastal Lagoon” is led by Dr. Linda Walters of UCF Biology and includes scholars from multiple disciplines (geography, GIS, sociology, biology, and engineering).  Dr. Hawthorne’s work on the grant includes: a) developing citizen science GIS applications to examine emotional attachment and sense of place along coastal communities on the Indian River Lagoon and b) creating educational outreach activities to engage broader society in explorations of the Lagoon. Dr. Hawthorne teaches GIS courses at the undergraduate and graduate level at UCF, including intro GIS, GIS applications, advanced topics in GIS, and participatory GIS in Belize (the university’s first GIS study abroad course).  You can learn more about the Belize study abroad course at Dr. Hawthorne serves as Chair of the Applied Geography Specialty Group for the Association of American Geographers.  He also serves on the editorial board of The International Journal of Applied Geospatial Research.  He is Founding Director of The Geospatial STEM Academy funded by The Verizon Foundation.  The Academy is a STEM education program for Title 1 high school students to engage with geospatial technologies (including geographic information systems and drones) in real-world, community-based projects.  As a former faculty member at Georgia State University (GSU), Dr. Hawthorne was recognized by the GSU Honors College with their most prestigious mentoring award as he received the 2015 Faculty Award for Undergraduate Research and Mentoring.