Conversations on Cartography: It Came from a Blue Sky 5/25

Conversations on Cartography: It Came From a Blue Sky

Conversations on Cartography: It Came from a Blue Sky…

Join John W. Hessler and Arthur Dunkelman as they explore new computational and mapping techniques that combine the more than fourteen million genomic sequences (generated throughout the COVID-19 pandemic) with advanced geospatial analysis to retrospectively map the first spillover events and the early spread of the SARS-CoV-2 to Europe and the U.S.

“It Came from a Blue Sky: Mapping the Emergence, Phylodynamics, and Zoonitic Spillover of SAR-CoV-2 from Rhinolophus Bats”

Zoonotic viruses like SARS-CoV-2, HIV, and Ebola are strange creatures. They are not really alive, at least in the normal sense, but are only sequences of genetic code marking time in the cells of a passive animal reservoir until they spillover and begin moving and replicating, thereby making their presence felt. All of us have become familiar in recent years with these facts, as the SARS-CoV-2 virus has come into all our lives. John Hessler will discuss in-depth what we have learned about the origins of the virus and its animal host, and show dynamic map visualizations of both our recent COVID-19 pandemic and the recent Ebola virus outbreak in West Africa. The program will be followed by an audience Q&A session.

This University of Miami Libraries Special Collections event is free, open to the public, and hosted via Zoom. It will also be streamed via Facebook Live. All events in this series will be recorded for on-demand access following the broadcasts.

Register to Attend

Thursday, May 25, 2023  |  1:00-2:0o PM EDT

John W. HesslerPRESENTER:  John W. Hessler, FRGS  |  Lecturer at Johns Hopkins University, Director and Founder of the λ-LAB (Lambda-Lab) 

John is a lecturer at Johns Hopkins University and the Director and Founder of the λ-LAB (Lambda-Lab), where they apply high-performance computing and geospatial analysis to some of the most difficult humanitarian and public health policy issues facing the world today. At the λ-LAB, they are developing new statistical and computational tools for mapping, modeling, and visualizing the dynamics of far from equilibrium spatial processes, like the spread of pandemics. Recently, their work has centered on mapping the emergence, phylodynamics, and the zoonotic spillover of SAR-CoV-2 from Rhinolophus Bats—thought to be the hosts of SARS-CoV-2. Read more »


Arthur DunkelmanMODERATOR:  Arthur Dunkelman  |  Curator, Jay I. Kislak Collection, University Libraries

Prior to joining the University of Miami Libraries as the Curator of the Kislak Collection, Arthur served as Director and Curator of the Jay I. Kislak Foundation for 24 years. In 2004, when a portion of the Kislak Foundation Collection was donated to the Library of Congress, he was responsible for managing the transition and establishing research and public outreach programs. Two exhibitions, “Treasures of the Jay I. Kislak Collection” (2005) and “Exploring the Americas” (2007 to present), highlighted the materials and brought them to national and international attention. Arthur also edited a comprehensive catalog of the collection, published by the Library of Congress. Read more »