Kelly Sims

Kelly Sims

Phone: (865) 576-9366
Fax: (865) 241-6261


MS, Geography, University of Tennessee – Knoxville, TN (May 2014)
-Thesis: "Integrating Social Media in the Development of a Special Event Population Dynamics Model"
BA, Geography, University of Tennessee – Knoxville, TN (2009)
     -minor: Hotel, Restaurant, and Tourism Management

Research Experience and Interests

Ms. Sims is currently working at the Lab as a Post-Master's Research Associate after completing her Master's degree in Geography at the University of Tennessee in the Fall of 2014. Her responsibilities support current GIST spatial research initiatives, with special emphasis in spatio-temporal population and social dynamics modeling and simulation. Other duties include data collection, input, and quality assurances, as well as multi-resolution data analysis.

Before becoming a Post-Masters, Ms. Sims worked as a Graduate Research Assistant in this same group supporting their Special Event Dataset from August 2012 to December 2014. During this time, she studied open source data of event gatherings across the United States and built a national geodatabase of special events for many major metropolitan cities. She also incorporated the use of VGI through social media feeds to develop a population GIS model for a more accurate high-resolution population distribution of the University of Tennessee's football fan base on game day Saturdays.

Prior to Graduate School, Ms. Sims worked as a full-time Research Associate as a Post-Bachelors contractor with, again, the GIST group from August 2009 to August 2012. Her responsibilities included the validation and verification of LandScan USA data, as well as imagery analysis and data collection to support several other projects.

Ms. Sims first joined the GIST group as an undergrad, where she spent her final semester (Spring 2009) interning and gaining hands on experience in the GIS field. Research projects included working on the study of Las Vegas population variations due to special events, and while at the University of Tennessee, restaurant location determination for Knoxville, Tennessee based upon price and cuisine.

For over 6 years, Ms. Sims has worked closely with the GIST group and maintains her interests in GIS for the use of spatial analysis/modeling and population dynamics.

Full Biosketch