Thomas Allen

Photo of Thomas Allen Professor of Geography
Old Dominion University
Dept. of Political Science & Geography
Norfolk, Virginia 23529
Phone: 757-683-6059

Visit Thomas's Research Website

Research Disciplines: Research Interests:

Applications of GIS, Remote Sensing, and Spatial Analysis to Coastal and Marine Environments, Environmental Hazards, Sea Level Rise and Climate Change Impacts and Adaptation

View Thomas's CV

Biographical Sketch

I am a geography professor at Old Dominion University. I specialize in environmental research and teaching on coastal Geographic Information Systems (GIS), remote sensing, and spatial analysis to address environmental problems, resource management, and hazards. Many of my applied research projects have been collaborative across federal, state, and local governments, with some supported by partnership with the National Park Service, USGS, Fish and Wildlife Service, and EPA National Estuary Program. Much of my work develops decision support systems, webGIS, participatory GIS and crowdsourcing.


  • Ph.D. Geography, UNC-Chapel Hill
  • B.S. Geography, Old Dominion University

Ongoing and Recent CESU Projects

Recent and ongoing projects in partnership with CESU partners:

Traditional Ecological Knowledge (TEK) and WebGIS

Identifying Cultural Resources Vulnerable to Sea Level Rise and Storm Surges. Cape Hatteras National Seashore.

Mid-Atlantic Sea Level Rise Demonstration Study: Communities at Intensive Risk (CAIR). NASA Disasters Program.

Mapping Salt Marshes across the Southeast, Peninsular and Gulf Coast Florida. with the South Atlantic Landscape Conservation Cooperative (SALCC) and the Atlantic Coast Joint Venture (ACJV).

Atlantic White Cedar, Salt Marsh, and Phragmites Mapping for Sea Level Rise and Salt Intrusion in the Albemarle-Pamlico. US Fish and Wildlife Service and NC and National Estuarine Research Reserves.

Other Research

Other research projects include:

Ports and Infrastructure Vulnerability to Sea Level and Storm Surges. Port of Virginia

Field Surveys of First Floor Building Elevations for Building Damage Assessment and Flood Response. Virginia Department of Emergency Management.

Application of small Unmanned Aerial Systems (sUAS) to Coastal Dune-Beach-Nearshore Systems. Commonwealth Center for Recurrent Flooding Resiliency.

Improving Flood Mapping in Ultra- Low-Relief Coastal Environments with Digital Elevation Models. 

Communicating Flood Impacts for Disaster Risk Communication using Geovisualization. UNC Renaissance Computing Institute (RENCI)

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