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Congratulations to Debayan Mandal for Successfully Defending His Dissertation Proposal

On May 17, 2024, Debayan Mandal, successfully defended his dissertation proposal, aimed at shaping our approach to disaster resilience using Digital Twins, and became a Ph.D. candidate. His proposal, titled "Toward Smart and Resilient Communities: Advancing Multiscale Disaster Resilience in the Age of CyberGIS and Digital Twins" leverages novel technologies to tackle the cascading challenges of natural disasters - from national to building level.

Figure 1. Debayan successfully defended his dissertation proposal

His research proposal focuses on understanding the dynamics of disasters across various scales - from large regions to neighborhoods and individuals. This identifies the three key challenges towards holistic resilience: Lack of a Customizable Resilience Framework, Barriers in User Accessibility, and The Need for a 3D Perspective. This led his research direction to two deliverable objectives - A Customized CyberGIS Framework for Analyzing Disaster Resilience and a Comprehensive Digital Twin for Navigating Urban Flood Dynamics to Strengthen Resilience in 4D.

The CyberGIS platform (PRIME) facilitates spatiotemporal disaster resilience assessment at a county level and is empirically validated; is reproducible ensuring accessibility; is customizable for various case studies, and can identify the causal relationships between socio-economic characteristics and disaster resilience scores.

His Galveston - Digital Twin has been developed by integrating topography, hydrology, and urban infrastructure at a very fine spatial level. It has been validated against historical data using web scrapers and social sensing analysis. He has effectively demonstrated the GDT’s utility, focusing on its application in disaster management through 'what-if' scenarios and real-time urban resilience decision support systems using radar data.

Figure 3: Poster featuring example results from his two deliverable objectives

Congratulations to Debayan, and we look forward to hearing more about the research activities and achievements from GEAR Lab! Gig'em!



Geospatial Exploration and Resolution (GEAR) Lab

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