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GIS Story Map shows the several points of interest in Pinawa, Manitoba.

Mapping new paths with GIS

UM graduate student places in the top at national scholarship competition

July 9, 2024 — 

Parinaz Joneidi Shariat Zadeh’s work is one of the top two projects in Canada for the 2024 Esri Young Scholars Award and received an Honourable Mention in Esri Canada’s annual competition.

Parinaz is a Master of Natural Resources Management (MNRM) student at the University of Manitoba, supervised by Dr. Shirley Thompson. Her thesis project focused on redesigning an urban space to make it safe and secure for people as a public place. Photo of Parinaz Joneidi Shariat Zadeh.Within the scope of her thesis for a degree in Natural Resources Management, Parinaz engaged with the Pinawa, Manitoba community to undertake a project aimed at enhancing the infrastructure for active transportation. This endeavor was to encourage a more active lifestyle — a more enhanced quality of living in Pinawa.

Parinaz’s GIS story map, titled “Green and Active Transportation Planning: Pinawa, Manitoba,” is part of her research to visually document and analyze the impacts of this initiative, further enriching the academic and practical insights into the project’s contributions to active transportation and community development.  The story map comprises six different interactive maps and highlights the need for transportation transition. All work was completed using the tools available under the University of Manitoba’s GIS Hub, managed by Meg Miller through UM Libraries.

By focusing on the increase of non-motorized forms of transportation, Parinaz’s project aimed to consider how communities plan their public spaces and infrastructure and contribute to both the physical and mental well-being of the community members. Moreover, it aligns with the broader objectives of sustainability, assisting in the transformation of Pinawa into a vibrant community committed to environmental stewardship.

For over a decade now, Esri in cooperation with its international distributors, has recognized the exemplary mapping work of students through the Esri Young Scholars Award. The applications received from students in Canada each year reflect the diverse applications and research fields where geographic information systems (GIS) are used- from natural to built environments, historical landscapes, transportation, healthcare access, and many others.

Parinaz’s story maps, along with a selection of others, can be viewed in Canada’s 2024 Esri Young Scholars Award story map collection. Information for the 2025 competition will be released in early 2025.

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