Peter Scull

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Peter Scull

Professor of Geography

Department/Office Information

308 Ho Science Center
  • MTWRF 9:00am - 4:00pm (308 Ho Science Center & zoom)


I am a physical geographer interested in using geospatial tools (geographic information systems and remote sensing) to study environmental change. My research program is generally focused on topics within soil geography and biogeography. Currently, however, I am part of an interdisciplinary and international team of researchers studying the prevalence of antibiotic resistance in pathogens causing upper respiratory illness in southwestern Uganda.  I have also become increasingly interested in critical GIS, in particular the erosion of locational privacy.

  • Phi Eta Sigma Professor of the Year, 2004-2005
  • U.S. E.P.A. National Center for Environmental Research Fellowship, Science to Achieve Results Program (1999-2001)
  • Bonzani, C., Scull, P, and D. Yamamoto (2023) A spatiotemporal analysis of the social determinants of health for COVID-19. Geospatial Healh 18 (153) DOI
  • Woods, C.L., Mekonnen, A.B., Baez-Schon, M., Thomas, R., Scull, P., Tsegay, B.A., and C.L. Cardelús (2020) Tree Community Composition and Dispersal Syndrome Vary with Human Disturbance in Sacred Church Forests in Ethiopia. Forests 11 (10) DOI
  • Cardelús, C.L., Mekonnen, A.B., Jensen, K.H., Woods, C.L., Baez, M.C., Montufar, M., Bazany, K., Tsegay, B.A., Scull, P. and W.H. Peck (2020) Edge effects and human disturbance influence soil physical and chemical properties in Sacred Church Forests in Ethiopia. Plant SoilDOI
  • Frankl, A, Nyssen, J., Adgo, E., Wassie, A. and P. Scull (2019) Can woody vegetation in valley bottoms protect from gully erosion? Insights using remote sensing data (1938-2016) from subhumid NW Ethiopia. Regional Environmental Change. DOI
  • McCay, T.S., and Scull, P. (2019) Invasive lumbricid earthworms in northeastern North American forests and consequences for leaf-litter fauna. Biological Invasions DOI
  • Cardelús, C.L, C.L. Woods, A. Bitew Mekonnen*, S. Dexter*, P. Scull, Berhanu Tsegay Abraha. (2019). Disturbance impacts the integrity of sacred church forests, Ethiopia. PlosONE.14(3): DOI
  • Cardelus, C., Scull. P., Wassie, A., Woods, C., Klepeis, P., and I. Orlowska (2017) Shadow conservation and the persistence of sacred forests in northern Ethiopia. Biotropica. DOI 
  • Woods, C. Cardelus, C., Scull, P., Wassie, A. Baez*, M., and P. Klepeis (2017) Stone walls and sacred forest conservation in Ethiopia. Biodiversity and Conservation. 26(1): 209-221. DOI
  • Klepeis, P. Orlowska, I, Kent, E., Cardelus, C., Scull, P., Wassie, A. and C. Woods (2016) Ethiopian Church Forests: A Hybrid Model of Protection. Human Ecology. 44(6): 715-730.
  • Scull, P., Cardelus, C., Klepeis, P., Woods, C., Frankl, A. and J. Nyssen (2016)  The resilience of Ethiopian church forests: interpreting aerial photographs, 1938-2015. Land Degradation and Development. DOI: 10.1002/ldr.2633
  • Scull, P., Burnett, A, Dolfi, E.*, Goldfarb, A.*, and Baum, P.* (2015) Privacy and Ethics in Undergraduate GIS Curricula. Journal of Geography. DOI: 10.1080/00221341.2015.1017517
  • Cavallo, S.*, Lynch, J.* and P. Scull (2014) The Digital Divide in Citizen-Initiated Government Contacts: a GIS approach. Journal of Urban Technology. 21(4): 77-93.
  • Cardelus, C.L., Scull, P., Hair, J.*, Baimas-George, M.*, Lowman, M.D., and Wassie, A.E., (2013) A preliminary assessment of Ethiopian sacred grove status at the landscape and ecosystem scales. Diversity 5(2): 320-334.
  • Klepeis, P., Scull, P., Lalonde, T.*, Svajlenka, N.*, and N. Gill (2013) Changing forest recovery, dynamics in the Northeastern United States. Area 45 (2): 239-248.
  • Scull, P, Palmer, M.*, Frey, F. and E. P. Kraly (2012) A comparison of two home range modeling methods using Ugandan mountain gorilla data.  International Journal of Geographic Information Science. 26(11): 2111-2121.
  • Scull, P. and Schaetzl, R. (2011) Using PCA to Characterize and Differentiate Loess Deposits in Wisconsin and Upper Michigan, USA. Geomorphology. 127: 143-155.
  • Scull, P. (2010) A top-down approach to the State Factor paradigm for use in macro-scale soil analysis. Annals of the Association of American Geographers. 100(1):1 -12.
  • Scull, P. (2007) Changes in soil temperature associated with reforestation in central New York state. Physical Geography. 24(4): 1-14.
  • Scull, P. and Richardson, J.* (2007) Reconstructing the Pre-European Settlement Forest Composition of Central New York State from Ranked Timber Observations, The American Midland Naturalist. 158: 446-460.
  • Berman, J.*, McCay, T., and Scull, P. (2007) Spatial analysis of shrew (Insectivora: Soricidae) species richness in North America north of Mexico. Acta Theriologica. 52 (2): 151-158
  • Scull, P and Okin, G. (2007) Sampling challenges posed by continental scale soil landscape modeling. Science of the Total Environment. 372: 645-656.
  • Michelsen-Correa, S.* and Scull P. (2005) The impact of reforestation on soil temperature. Middle States Geographer 38:39-44.
  • Scull, P., Okin, G.S., Chadwick, and Franklin, J. (2005) A comparison of methods to predict soil surface texture in an alluvial basin. The Professional Geographer. 57(3): 423-437.
  • Scull, P., Franklin, J., and Chadwick, O.A (2005) The application of classification tree analysis to soil type prediction in a desert landscape. Ecological Modeling. 181: 1-15.
  • Scull, P. and Harman, J. (2004) Forest distribution and site quality in southern Lower Michigan. Journal of Biogeography. 31: 1503-1514.
  • Scull, P., Franklin, J., Chadwick, O.A., and McArthur, D. (2003) Predictive soil mapping- a review. Progress in Physical Geography. 27(2): 171-197.

* former Colgate student co-author


Post Doc-Colorado State University (crop and soil science)