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UCSB Scholars to Give Lectures in Memory of Reginald Golledge

The geography professor was named the 2009 Faculty Research Lecturer but died before he could deliver his speech

In memory of Reginald Golledge, a UCSB geography professor named the 2009 Faculty Research Lecturer — the highest honor UCSB bestows on a faculty member — scholars from the geography and psychology departments will present a retrospective of his most significant research accomplishments. Golledge died May 29, before his Faculty Research Lecture could be delivered.

The series of lectures, titled “Reginald G. Golledge: A Research Career,” will begin at 3 p.m. Nov. 2 in the campus’ Corwin Pavilion. It is free and open to the public.

Geography professor Daniel Montello will speak on “Reginald Golledge: Early Career Research.” Geography professor Helen Couclelis will follow with “Reginald Golledge: Middle Career Research,” and the event will conclude with Jack Loomis, professor of psychology, speaking on “Reginald Golledge: Late Career Research.”

Golledge was a pioneer in the field of behavioral geography, which bridges geography and psychology. Over the course of his career, his research made tremendous contributions to areas such as spatial cognition, cognitive mapping, spatial knowledge acquisition, spatial abilities, and special decision-making and choice behavior.

In announcing the Faculty Research Lecturer award in March, the UCSB Academic Senate noted that Golledge “has made extraordinary contributions to science, and created at least three distinct subfields of geography.” The senate also credited Golledge with leading the Department of Geography to its position as one of the top programs in the country, and called him “one of the world’s leading forces for interdisciplinary research within his field and within academia in general.”

When a degenerative disease of the optic nerve caused Golledge to lose his eyesight in the early 1980s, he turned his research attention to the field of disabilities geography. He and his colleagues developed the UCSB Personal Guidance System, an innovative mobility system that combines spatial cognition, the science of geographic information systems, and support for people with physical limitations, including impaired vision. The success of the project has led to the launch of similar efforts around the world.

Golledge published extensively in several fields, including geography, regional science and cognitive psychology. He wrote or edited 16 books, as well as 100 chapters for other books. More than 150 of his papers have appeared in refereed academic journals and other publications, such as technical reports and book reviews.

Golledge also served as editor of the journal Geographical Analysis, and was a founding editor of the journal Urban Geography. He served on the editorial boards of the Annals of the Association of American Geographers, The Professional Geographer, Tijdschrift Voor Economische in Sociale Geografie, Environment and Behavior, and The Journal of Spatial Cognition and Computation. In addition, he was a reviewer for many different journals, as well as for the National Science Foundation, the National Institute of Justice, the National Institutes of Health, the Canada Council, the Australian Research Grants Council and the European Science Foundation.

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