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Jelena Vukomanovic

Assoc Professor

Biltmore Hall (Robertson Wing) 4008M


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Date: 09/01/23 - 12/31/25
Amount: $59,621.00
Funding Agencies: US Dept. of the Interior (DOI)

This project will assess the status and trends of long-term fire-effects plot data and develop a sustainable tool that will display these status and trends to assist park staff in management decisions. These data are currently housed in a national database (Feat-Firemon Integrated) that has limited accessibility. Yet, these data are used in assessing effectiveness of completed treatments and prioritizing and planning forest fire effect management actions. Annual assessments of the long-term monitoring plots are performed to determine effectiveness and prioritize where work is required. Therefore, the data currently is downloaded and analyzed as needed to answer these management questions. The completion of this project would provide a comprehensive look at these data, assess the current status and trends of the long-term data collected, and allow park staff to determine where and what work needs to be completed in the future. This project will allow the park???s Fire Program and staff to access and interact with this important dataset, providing information used in various management decisions, such as deciding where and when to burn or treat fuels, determining if burn or fuels treatment objectives are being met, how often treatments need to occur, and if any unanticipated/undesirable outcomes are occurring following treatment (e.g. increase in non-native species). Through the development of this tool, the current long-term monitoring data will be assessed and the tool will allow for continued analysis and assessment to be performed systematically by updating the associated datasets. This will minimize and standardize the analysis and assessment of these data for park management decision making practices.

Date: 09/16/22 - 9/30/25
Amount: $76,000.00
Funding Agencies: US Dept. of the Interior (DOI)

The National Fire Management Office provides a Fire Ecology Report template that highlights required and optional information to include in the Report. Local park management officers are encouraged to reference the report when planning the timing (season) and return interval (years between treatments) of fire treatments. University partners are welcome to use the data in the Report in their own research and collaborations can help build a larger body of knowledge. While the reports do contain executive summaries, they are often lengthy and written in technical terms; the format and the terminology used in the Reports often does not resonate with Park Management or the general public. This project has three main goals, which are all centered around increasing the utility and impact of annual Fire Ecology Reports. Goal 1: As a first step, Fire Management Office staff require a better understanding of current perceptions around Fire Ecology Reports and how they inform fire management practice. There is unharnessed potential for the information contained within these Reports to reach a wider audience, if it is leveraged to create more dynamic, effective, and engaging deliverables that both inform and educate. Goal 2: Next, we will identify the elements of successful communication strategies, with a focus on the tools and platforms (e.g. maps, infographics, interactive web platforms) that most effectively inform Park Managers of required changes to the timing of fire treatments and and/or burning interval. Goal 3: Finally, we will identify the communication strategies and platforms that resonate with a) the general public, and b) university researchers to communicate fire management and fire ecology in Interior Region 2. The intention is to increase public awareness and engagement and foster new collaborations and research opportunities.

Date: 09/01/21 - 8/15/25
Amount: $140,000.00
Funding Agencies: US National Park Service

The proposed project has three main goals. The first goal (1) is to provide innovative communication tools related to Region 1??????????????????s wildland and prescribed fire management role in the northeast US to the public. Areas of fire management include but are not limited to: implementation of prescribed fire, response during wildland fire, FAQs, pre-suppression activities, fire ecology, structure assessments, public engagement, fire science, overall fire management directive, and special topics such as veterans?????????????????? workforce, and women in fire management. The second goal (2) is to gain a better understanding of effective and inclusive communication platforms and strategies. This will allow us to make recommendations to improve effectiveness moving forward. The final goal (3) is to understand local community perceptions of fire risk and NPS?????????????????? role in fire management. Overall, the purpose of this project is to understand what communication platforms and strategies resonate with the public and to create those products for the Wildland Fire and Aviation Management Program of NPS in Interior Region 1.

Date: 10/15/19 - 5/31/24
Amount: $206,782.00
Funding Agencies: US Fish & Wildlife Service

From its Appalachian Mountains to the Atlantic Ocean, North Carolina is rich in its wide-ranging landscape, its diverse population, and flourishing economy. With several grand metropolitan areas and cozy rural towns, the state offers the best of both urban living and small-town life. Currently, North Carolina is considered the 9th most populous state. If population predictions hold, the state will become the 7th most populous state by 2032. With population growth, comes increased urbanization and infrastructure development, a growing rural and urban interface, and encroachment on communities and areas that support and serve the state??????????????????s military installations. In an effort to establish a landscape scale approach to natural resources management that enriches compatible land use while minimizing multiple encroachment threats and alleviating on-installation constraints, North Carolina is looking to enhance its Eastern Sentinel Landscape to support flexibility for military readiness beyond 2060 while linking co-benefits of conservation and keeping working forests and farms, working.

Date: 08/17/20 - 8/31/23
Amount: $110,800.00
Funding Agencies: US Dept. of the Interior (DOI)

Longer-term projections coupled with shorter-term regional forecasting of water level depths influence fire management actions taken by Big Cypress National Preserve (BICY) and Everglades National Park (EVER) fire management programs. Analyzing the relationship of known historical fire occurrence, fuel loading and water depth fluctuation models, we will expand on previous analyses supporting the current condition fire risk modeling. These new analyses will incorporate human causes such as road construction and dike removal projects into water level forecast models and provide fire managers with decision support tools in the form of maps, charts and online resources. These tools will contribute to the safety of public and private property and the resources (natural and cultural) that both BICY and EVER customarily protect. Fire program managers at BICY and EVER desire geospatial inputs of fire potential factors (fuels, weather, topography and risk) to fire behavior models that reflect local fire danger. A synthesis of existing geospatial data and fire danger models will guide efforts when creating new geospatial and tabular datasets whose modeled indices integrate with a Florida Statewide Fire Danger Rating System and associated maps.

Date: 05/01/22 - 6/30/23
Amount: $12,756.00
Funding Agencies: Alfred P. Sloan Foundation

The project will entail construction of an accessible, agent-based traffic flow model designed to evaluate and test the resilience and robustness of EV charging infrastructure under varying evacuation scenarios. I will first use the tool to conduct a case study on EV charging capacity along Interstate-40 from coastal to central North Carolina, specifically looking at how well existing capacity supports current as well as possible future levels of EV adoption across three different evacuation scenarios. I will then leverage a generalized version of the model to identify what parameters and parameter interactions are most important to ensuring that EV infrastructure can sufficiently support EV needs in emergency evacuation scenarios. I will also investigate how the temporal and spatial distribution of traffic contributes to the ability of infrastructure to support EV needs.

Date: 05/01/21 - 4/30/23
Amount: $12,212.00
Funding Agencies: Alfred P. Sloan Foundation

This project will identify how energy poverty identification is affected by changing spatial scales of analysis in North Carolina. Research outcomes from this will research provide context for the identification of energy poverty in North Carolina. Specifically, they will provide context for community and government decision-makers to understand the impacts of spatial analysis. This work will be done in 2 parts. The first part be a multi-scalar spatial model that compares components of energy poverty indicators between four geographic scales to understand how these changes alter what main energy indicators present at these levels. The second part will combine actual energy use data and with indicators to characterize how the detection of energy poverty changes by the scale of analysis.

Date: 09/10/18 - 12/31/21
Amount: $64,320.00
Funding Agencies: US Dept. of the Interior (DOI)

This project will improve access to and leverage the full benefits of the extensive??????????????????though arguably underutilized??????????????????research archive at Congaree National Park. NC State will compile and document geospatial information on research sites (sampling locations, plots, transects, etc.) at Congaree National Park (CONG) that can be associated with derivative research publications. The derivative products will provide staff, researchers, and partners at Congaree National Park with the ability to both locate research sites associated with specific research publications and identify publications related to research sites throughout the park. Improved access to research locations and findings will improve the following: (1) resource management decisions affecting specific locations in the park, (2) resource management decisions affecting specific habitat types, (3) identification of potentially understudied areas in the park; and (4) capacity for future research proposals and permits to leverage pre-existing data in site selection and data analysis. Improving access to geographic data and science research results throughout the park will also improve compliance and field activities for all areas of park operations including visitor and resource protection, interpretation, and trail management. These products will facilitate research access and maximize utilization by NPS staff, researchers, and partners. An analysis of geographic and temporal biases in the distribution of sampling sites can help prioritize future research locations or sampling sites and form recommendations for data management.

Date: 08/15/17 - 11/19/21
Amount: $131,875.00
Funding Agencies: US Dept. of the Interior (DOI)

The objective of this agreement is to contribute to present and future National Fire Program decision-support systems requirements of the Southeast, National Capital and Northeast Regions (collectively Eastern Regions) of the National Park Service (NPS) through the following four tasks: Task 1: Sifting through the Noise: Making Sense of the NPS??????????????????s Wildfire and Treatment Geospatial Data. This task focuses on using wildfire data to create performance metrics, by investigating the utility of fire data to address management needs. Outputs from these analyses will lead to the development of products specifically addressing Fire Management??????????????????s need to better articulate the implications for decreased fuels funding. Focusing on Big Cypress National Preserve and Everglades National Park, this task will examine recent treatment and wildfire data and compare the cost of wildfires with the cost of prescribed fires. Considerations of cost will include location/access, water, associated costs, and impacts to the public, e.g. closures, smoke. Task 2: What Do We Protect? Supporting Fire Management by Protecting Natural, Cultural and Infrastructural Resources through Geodatabase Development and Visualization. Fire Program managers have expressed a need for a spatial database consisting of locations where the effects of wildfire on the landscape would result in either habitat improvement (positive response) or habitat loss (negative response). Coincident to this are locations where sensitive cultural resources and critical infrastructure exist. Working with NPS fire ecologists and planners, this task will examine local parks?????????????????? vegetation data and assign fire response classes to vegetation types. Additionally, NCSU will examine the NPS Inventory and Monitoring, Southeastern Archeological Center (SEAC), NPS Archeological Sites Management Information System (ASMIS) and NPS Facilities Management Software System (FMSS) for existing sensitive-resource and critical-infrastructure datasets. Task 3: Understanding the Wildland-Urban Interface and Risk to Property from Wildfire through Geospatial Data and Web-based Applications. To reduce risk of life and property along and beyond their boundaries, NPS Park Units have historically suppressed wildfires inside their boundaries. For many years, the act of fire suppression has resulted in undesired consequences such as increases in fuel loading, changes to ecosystem structure and function, ecosystem and changes to landscape character. In addition, growing populations and increased development have limited the NPS Fire managers?????????????????? abilities to allow wildfire to play its natural role in these areas. This task will examine population growth and development in the wildland-urban interface. Focusing on high-population growth centers, it will evaluate the relationship that historical wildfire events and recent fuels treatments have had in shaping the natural qualities of the landscape. Task 4: Develop Curricula and Provide Web-map Training for NPS Fire Management Personnel The NPS has access to a powerful technological suite of tools, applications, and data through ESRI??????????????????s ArcGIS products. However, as with any new technology, training can improve the chances of adoption of new technologies and can ensure that it is implemented successfully and efficiently. This task will provide training to the NPS Fire Management Personnel specifically focused on the use of ArcGIS Online (AGOL).

Date: 09/15/20 - 4/30/21
Amount: $30,000.00
Funding Agencies: US National Park Service

One infographic product highlighting Fiscal Year (FY) 2020 accomplishments of NPS-RI Wildland Fire and Aviation Management Program. It will include the approximate cost (and funding source) of fuels treatment in FY 2020, focusing on the allocation of funds from various sources (Operation of the NPS (ONPS), national, regional, park, etc.).

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