Intervju med en geograf

Did you know one of our professors at the department of Geography has two master degrees? Or that a magazine was the reason he chose GIS and remote sensing? Find out more about Keshav Prasad Paudel and what GIS is here.

What is your educational background?
– I did my bachelor and first master in Nepal, where I am from. The bachelor was in Economy, Geography and Mathematics, and the master was in Geography with remote sensing. In 2006 I finished my master of philosophy (M.Phil) in Mountain Ecology and Human Adaption, which then was my second master degree. I started my Phd. in geography in 2007 and finished in 2011. After that I have been working as a post-doc at the Department of Geography.

One of the most complex courses in the Geography bachelor programme is the GIS, also called Geographical Information Systems. The course gives an introduction to use a programme called ArcGIS as a tool for analysing spatial data, as well as a theoretical background on management of geographical data.

Why did you want to work with GIS?
– When I was younger I was more amused by physical science, so for me it was more a natural choice and I was already doing physical geography in Nepal. I once read an article in a magazine about GIS, satellites and remote sensing and thought that sounded like a cool thing to do. That’s how I got into GIS in the first place.

Coming from Nepal to Norway don’t seem as a common choice for many people. The department of Geography have several research projects in Nepal and cooperation with universities there.

Why did you decide to come to Norway?
– When I was studying there was an exchange agreement between my university in Nepal and the university here in Bergen, where students exchanged between the two universities. I decided to attend, so it was a natural choice for me to come to Norway after that under the quota scholarship scheme.

I have the feeling that students of geography separates from other students. Maybe it is because of their common interest in hiking, or because they always seem to make references to the curriculum they are reading at the moment. But mostly I think it is because even though they are repeatedly trying to throw out any geographical reference they are always met with confused or staggering eyes from outsiders.

Are you also living in a GIS-bubble?

– I think it is the same with all geographers, we have the same eyes. We think spatially and attempt to solve different “geographical problems”. Of course sometimes when I go out I perceive geographic features as discrete objects or as continuous fields. For example, when I look at mountains I conceptualize it as continuous field of elevation. I think about how I could use interpolation and things like that. But that is mostly because I work with raster datasets, and maybe I tend to think more about it than other people do.

Keshav Prasad Paudel

                                                                    FIVE QUICK ONES

Hiking or bar?
– Hiking.

Car or bus?
– Bus

Coffee or tea?
– Coffee

Cricket or football?
– Football

Vector or raster?
– Raster


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