Raja Sengupta

Associate Professor
Raja Sengupta
Contact Information

Burnside Hall Room 412

(514) 398-5316
Email address: 
raja.sengupta [at] mcgill.ca
Research areas: 
Spatial decision support systems
Agent-based modeling
Current research: 

My research projects follow three distinct but complementary paths that fall under the broad umbrella of GIScience: agent-based models, spatial tools to measure anthropogenic impacts, and methodological improvements to existing GIScience tools.  Within GIScience, the use of agent-based models (ABMs) for modelling complex biological and social systems is a new and emerging topic of enquiry.  Further, the use of GIS and modeling to understand the impact of anthropogenic disturbance on ecosystems, and thereby direct policy, is an emerging area of enquiry.  Within this broad area of research, my goal has been to develop GIS-based analysis and tools that spatially link disturbances with outcomes at the landscape level, with a view to informing policy-making.  Finally, a third research trajectory focuses on improving existing methods, or creating new algorithms, to solve problems encountered with GIS in its current temporally static, two dimensional, database centric-form. 

Current Projects

  • Geovisualization of Historical Human Environment Interactions in the Indian Ocean World
  • Agent-Based Models of Zoonotic Disease Transmission (using Colobus Monkeys in Kibale National Park, Uganda as an example)
  • Using Cell/Mobile Phones for early detection of epidemics in rural India


  • PhD Geography, Southern Illinois University-Carbondale (2000)
  • MS Geology, Southern Illinois University-Carbondale (1995)
  • MSc Earth Science, Indian Institute of Technology-Mumbai (1993)
  • BSc Geology, St Xavier’s College University of Mumbai (1991)
Selected publications: 
  1. Bonnell, T.R., Campenni, M., Chapman, C., Gogarten, J., Reyna-Hurtado, R., Teichroeb, J., Wasserman, M., and Sengupta, R., In Press (2013), Emergent group level navigation: an agent-based evaluation of movement patterns in a folivorous primate.  PLOS ONE.
  2. MacKenzie, C., Chapman, C., and Sengupta, R., 2012, Spatial patterns of illegal resource extraction in Kibale National Park, Uganda. Environmental Conservation 39(1): 38-50.
  3. Bonnell, T., Chapman, C., Sengupta, R., and Goldberg, T., 2010, Linking landscapes to disease: Implications of spatial changes in resource distribution for red colobus monkey disease transmission using Agent-Based Models.  Ecological Applications 221(20): 2491-2500.
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