Clark University Geography Graduate Receives Esri Special Achievement in GIS Award – Clark Now

Esri President Jack Dangermond presented Clark University graduate Safaa Karaki Aldwaik (MA ’07, MA ’10, Ph.D. ’12) with the SAG Award at the Esri User Conference in San Diego, July 22. Pictured are Aldwaik, his daughter Samia, Dangermond and Eng. Alaa Abu Ein, deputy mayor of Ramallah.

Clark University Graduate School of Geography former Safaa Karaki Aldwaik received the Esri Special Achievement in GIS (SAG) award for his work on Geographic Information Systems with the city of Ramallah, Palestine. She received her award from Esri President Jack Dangermond at the Esri User Conference 2015 in San Diego on July 22.

Aldwaik is Director of the Department of Geographic Information Science and Information Technology at the Municipality of Ramallah, Palestine. It has set up the first municipal GIS system in Palestine and uses state-of-the-art GIS concepts to implement the first addressing system in the city of Ramallah and to convert all municipal services into electronic services.

At Clark, Aldwaik earned two master’s degrees (’07 and ’10) and a doctorate. (’12) in geography with a concentration in GIS, land change and remote sensing.

“The knowledge and experience I gained during my time at Clark was invaluable and allowed me to change the Palestine GIS interface. GIS is now part of the day-to-day work of the city of Ramallah,” said Aldwaik “No words suffice to express my gratitude to the faculty at Clark and to my outstanding advisor [Robert Gilmore Pontius Jr., professor and associate director of the Graduate School of Geography].”

Aldwaik has also designed a Ramallah Smart City project that transforms the entire city into a wireless hotspot providing free 24-hour access to city services. She is Co-Chair of the Smart Cities Committee created during the joint meeting of the Executive Bureau and the Council of UCLG-MEWA in Adana, Turkey in December 2014 to improve the knowledge of local authorities and citizens of the Middle East region. and Western Asia in the field of new technologies.

“As you can see, being a mother of five hasn’t stopped me from being a role model for women involved in science, technology and public service,” Aldwaik noted in a message to Professor Pontius.

Esri Corporation develops geographic information systems that “operate as an integral component in almost any type of organization. Esri inspires and enables people to positively impact the future through a deeper geographic understanding of the changing world around them.

Founded in 1921, Clark’s Graduate School of Geography is internationally recognized for its innovative research and is a recognized leader in the field. Consistently ranked as one of top ten graduate programs by National Research Council, Clark Geography enables graduate students to train with top professionals and participate in a world-class research community. Additionally, having awarded more doctorates than any other geography program in the United States, Clark Geography has a reputation for developing future leaders in the field. Learn more about Clark’s tradition of pioneering geographical scholarship.

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