Faculty Research

What Would a Good Electoral Map Even Look Like?

Everybody knows that gerrymandering is bad because it unfairly stacks the political decks. In addition to the lopsided electoral outcomes, a gerrymandered map is also objectionable because crazy, mangled voting districts in the shapes of corkscrews or tweezers don’t correspond at all to the relevant geographic units in which we actually live. People have emotional and political attachments to all sorts of geographic entities: jurisdictions like states and cities as well as culture regions like the Bay Area or Appalachia. But who ever introduced themselves a proud resident of NH-02, or got a tattoo with the outline of TN-03?

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Professor Attends U.N. Climate Talks in Germany, Shares Insights on Pathways for Student Involvement

A critical forum for addressing climate change globally is the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change. Each year students, alumni, and faculty attend the Conference of the Parties (COP) to raise awareness of the impacts of climate change on marginalized communities and younger generations, communicate important scientific findings, observe the global negotiation process, and advocate for global policy changes. This past winter, Assistant Professor of Geography, Jonathan Winter, attended COP 23 in Bonn, Germany as part of the American Association of Geographers observer delegation.

Polar Vortex Defies Climate Change in the Southeast

 

 

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Media contact: Amy Olson | [email protected] | 603-­‐646-­‐3274

 

Polar Vortex Defies Climate Change in the Southeast

Winters in the Southeast Have Been Getting Colder Instead of Warmer

 

HANOVER, N.H. – Feb. 13, 2018 – Overwhelming scientific evidence has demonstrated that our planet is getting warmer due to climate change, yet parts of the eastern U.S. are actually getting cooler.

According to a Dartmouth-led study in Geophysical Research Letters, the location of this anomaly, known as the “U.S. warming hole,” is a moving target. (A pdf of this accepted article is available upon request).

 

During the winter and spring, the U.S. warming hole sits over the Southeast, as the polar vortex allows arctic air to plunge into the region. This has resulted in persistently cooler temperatures throughout the Southeast. After spring, the U.S. warming hole moves north and is located in the Midwest.

The hurricane of 1938 was a disaster – would it be more of a disaster today?

From the Concord Monitor (www.concordmonitor.com/hurricane-of-1938-concord-nh-12614754)

 

Frank Magilligan of Dartmouth can help you picture it: “Imagine a bigger, windier, slower-moving Irene.”

You remember Hurricane Irene, which moved up the Connecticut River valley in late August of 2011 after doing damage along the Eastern Seaboard.

Even though it had been downgraded to a tropical form by the time it arrived, Irene rampaged through Vermont, killing six people, cutting off all access to 13 separate communities, and causing tens of millions of dollars worth of damage to build ings, roads and the power system, some of which was not fully repaired for years.

New Hampshire was much less affected because of the way hurricanes work. Since hurricanes change as they interact with the jet stream in the Northeast, and produce much more rainfall on the western side of the storm – in Irene’s case, on the Vermont side. Almost all of the damage was caused by flooding rather than high winds.

New commuting map of USA wins top planning research award

A ground-breaking map of the United States that defines mega-regions by commuting patterns has won the UK’s top planning research award.

It is one five winners at yesterday's RTPI Research Excellence Awards ceremony, held during the 2017 UK-Ireland Planning Research Conference.

Mega-regions in the USA have long been understood in geography as cities connected by their economies and infrastructure, but this way of conglomerating places are increasingly unable to reflect what is happening on the ground

Instead, the researchers analysed the daily work journeys of more than 130 million Americans over five years to better understand the changing economic interdependence between cities and their surrounding areas.

The study illustrates the value of big data such as commuting data in helping to understand how places really work, which can be highly useful for policy makers and planners to make strategic decisions, from infrastructure and transport investment to how boundaries should be drawn up for elections.

Intense Rainfall More Common in last 20 Years

Intense rainfall events, like the one that triggered flash floods throughout the region and a mudslide in southern Vermont on Monday, have become much more common in the last 20 years, according to researchers at Dartmouth College.

Though the jury is still out on whether climate change is behind the trend, the findings, which were published last month, do suggest that what we think of as 100-year flood events might actually be much more likely to happen than conventional wisdom suggests, said Jonathan Winter, who joined Dartmouth colleagues Huanping Huang and Erich Osterberg on the research team.

Winter found that intense rainfalls — generally thought of as 2 or more inches of precipitation in a 24-hour period — are 53 percent more likely to happen than they were before the mid-1990s.

And current conditions in the Upper Valley are likely to increase the impact of those heavy rains.

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