David UnwinThe Award Subcommittee of the UCGIS Education Committee is pleased to announce the winner of the 2006 UCGIS Education Award: David Unwin of The University of London (emeritus).

One of the founding fathers of GIS education, David retired in 2004 after a distinguished 40-year career marked by many contributions to the scholarship of teaching and learning, of service to the profession, and of educational innovation. With colleagues, David initiated and developed an early face-to-face Masters degree program in GIScience at the University of Leicester, together with The University of London Birkbeck College’s GIScOnline, the first fully Internet-delivered GIScience Masters-level degree program.

For many years David co-directed the UK’s centrally-funded Computers in Teaching Centre for Geography, Geology and Meteorology and, with colleagues such as Maguire, Fisher, Dykes, Wood and Raper, developed pioneering software for teaching GIS, for highly interactive visualization, and for using virtual reality in field work.

Also for many years, David served what is now the Quantitative Methods Research Group of the Royal Geographic Society (with IBG) as its secretary, treasurer and chair, as well as an early editor of its Concepts and Techniques in Modern Geography teaching monograph series.

David was one of the team that started and developed the Journal of Geography in Higher Education, which he edited for several years and which led to the team-written text Teaching Geography in Higher Education: a Manual of Good Practice.

In addition to over a hundred papers in quantitative geography and GISc, David has authored, co-authored, or edited a number of texts including Computing for Geographers (1976), Introductory Spatial Analysis (1981), Computer Programming for Geographers (1985), Visualization in GIS (1994), Spatial Analysis (1996), Virtual Reality in Geography (2000), Geographic Information Analysis (2003) and, most recently, Re-presenting GIS (2005).

In USA, David has provided inputs from ‘over the pond’ into a forthcoming National Academies of Science report called Beyond Mapping and as a member of Advisory Board for the UCGIS GI S&T Body of Knowledge.