Congratulations to Recipients of the 2020 Faculty of Forestry Best Master’s Thesis and Best Doctoral Dissertation Awards

The recipient of each award demonstrates that they have met high expectations from the Faculty and contributed to the reputation of the Faculty for world-class research. We are fortunate to have such outstanding graduate students and we look forward to celebrating their continued success and accomplishments.

2020 Faculty of Forestry Best Master’s Thesis Award

Agatha Czekajlo

Agatha Czekajlo

Department: Forest Resources Management

Supervisor: Dr Nicholas Coops

Dissertation Title: Characterizing multi-decadal vegetative greenness and land use dynamics across Canadian urban areas using satellite remote sensing

Ms. Czekajlo’s research developed new approaches to process remotely sensed data to go beyond land cover, and utilized the dimensions of the remotely sensed data to infer urban land use; a critical need for urban studies across Canada. Her work exploited the multi-decadal imagery available through the Landsat archive and examined greenness and land use dynamics across Canadian cities. Her research produced urban greenspace and land use maps for 18 Canadian cities making it one of the first studies to derive these attributes consistently across Canada. Her work has been published in a leading peer-reviewed journal with a second paper in review as well as presented at the 41st Canadian Symposium on Remote Sensing.

Honourable Mention for Best Master’s Thesis goes to Teresa Silverthorn (Dr John Richardson).

2020 Faculty of Forestry Best Doctoral Dissertation Award

Dr Krishna Teja Malladi

Krishna Teja Malladi

Department: Wood Science

Supervisor: Dr Taraneh Sowlati

Dissertation Title: Optimization of forest-based biomass logistics at the operational level

Dr Malladi’s research focused on the optimization of biomass logistics at the operational level and analyzing the impacts of carbon pricing policies on the optimum cost and emissions determined by the optimization models. His work was the first in the literature to develop mathematical models for optimizing biomass logistics at the operational level considering storage, pre-processing, and transportation decisions. His models include several practical features of biomass logistics such as multiple biomass types, multiple truck types, truck-biomass compatibilities, and truck-location compatibilities. Dr Malladi’s work was selected as the runner-up for the “Practice Prize Competition” at the Annual Conference of the Canadian Operational Research Society in 2018. Practice Prize Competition recognizes outstanding applications of Operations Research to industry. In addition, Dr Malladi’s work was one of the finalists of the “David Martell Student Paper Prize in Forestry” in 2018.

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