The CGA administers the following awards for Harvard students:

Howard T. Fisher Prize in GIS: The Fisher Prize was established in 1999 to promote and reward student work in this broad and potentially interdisciplinary area, from both undergraduate and graduate students at Harvard University.

Howard Taylor Fisher (1903-1979), graduate of Harvard College and architect from Chicago, founded the Laboratory for Computer Graphics (later, Laboratory for Computer Graphics and Spatial Analysis) at the GSD in 1965, where he further developed the synagraphic mapping system (SYMAP).  The prize is jointly administered by the Center for Geographic Analysis (CGA) and the Harvard Graduate School of Design (GSD), funded by a gift from Jack Dangermond (MLA 1969), President of Environmental Systems Research Institute (ESRI) Inc., the world leading company in GIS (geographic information system) modeling and mapping software and technology. The Technical Advisory Committee for CGA, oversees the award process each year. Register for the award

2022 Fisher Prize Award Winner:  Group entry from Graduate School of Design students Layal Merhi, Olivia Poston, Thanaporn (Nuknik) Lam, and Inkoo Kang for their entry "Cities [re]defined"  Judges comments: “An intriguing research question explored from multiple perspectives, providing a unique insight into known and unknown aspects of cities.” “Good variety of GIS data used with solid overlay analysis. Results presented with effective cartographic techniques.” View the award winning story map.


2021 Fisher Prize Award Winner (undergraduate student category): Jordan Kruguer, for the entry: Urban-SAR:  Creation of a Geospatially Explicit Framework for Evaluating the Impact of Urban Form on the Growth and Performance of Cities.  Judges comments: “A novel methodology for creating typologies of urban form and growth presented in a comprehensive, scientifically disciplined manner.” “A robust analysis that utilized multiple open technologies and data.”  View the award winning story map.


2021 Fisher Prize Award Winner (graduate student category): Thandi Nyambose, for the entry: HARLEM, NYC: African American Design Nexus.  Judges comments: "Excellent example of combining solid fundamental GIS with historic maps, photos, audio, and video into a compelling, visually stimulating story." "An important topic to explore, presented in an immersive fashion." View the award winning story map.


2020 Fisher Prize Award Winner: Emilio Sempris, for the entry: World On Fire: Top 100 Jurisdictions with Wildfire. Judges comments include “A stunning 3D visualization making a statement in easy to understand manner.”  “Great utilization of a global publicly available dataset, presented and rendered in a unique way.”  View the poster.


2019 Fisher Prize Award Winner: Longfeng Wu and Seung Kyum Kim, for their entry: Unequal Territory of Accessing Urban Green Spaces: A comparative Study of 341 Prefecture-level Chinese Cities. Judges comments include “Access to greenspace in a rapidly urbanizing environment is a timely and important topic. This project featured relevant data with well documented sources and robust, logical geographic analysis presented in a well organized, effective, visually pleasing manner."   View the poster.


The Esri Innovation Program (EIP) Student of the Year Award: Formetly known as the Esri Development Center award, the EIP Student of the Year is an annual award open to all Harvard students, sponsored by Esri and administered by the CGA. Its purpose is to recognize outstanding achievements in developing novel tools or techniques for geographic analysis. One winner each year will be recognized by a certificate, a $500 cash prize, and a free book from Esri press.  Register for this year's award


2021 EIP Award Winner: Sun Kim, Master of Science student at the at the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health for the submission: Spatiotemporal pattern of COVID-19 and government response in South Korea.  View the story map.  Judges comments: "An undeniably strong use of GIS both for analysis and visualization.”  “A timely analysis on an important topic.  Excellent utilization of ArcGIS for spatial statistics and map creation."


2019 EDC Center Student of the Year Award Winner:  Prasanna Shrivastava, Masters in Sustainability student at the Harvard Extension School, for his submission: Areas Suitable for Solar Water Pump Installations in India.   View the poster.  Judges comments:  "A worthwhile, logically laid out analysis using relevant datasets."  "Well structured from the problem framing, data organization, analysis, and results to the mapping and poster layout."

Award winners 2012-2018


See also: Events