Currently, the STKO team consists of the following members:

Krzysztof Janowicz

My name is Krzysztof Janowicz. I am an Associate Professor for Geographic Information Science at the Geography Department of the University of California, Santa Barbara, USA. I am running the STKO Lab which investigates the role of space and time for knowledge organization. I am also a Faculty Research Affiliate of the Center for Information Technology and Society as well as the Cognitive Science Program. Before, I was an Assistant Professor at the GeoVISTA Center, Department of Geography at the Pennsylvania State University, USA. I am the community leader of the 52° North semantics community and one of the two Editors-in-Chief of the Semantic Web journal. Prior moving to the US, I was working as postdoctoral researcher at the Institute for Geoinformatics (ifgi), University of Münster in Germany for the Münster Semantic Interoperability Lab (MUSIL). Before starting a career in academia, I was leading a software engineering and consulting company in Germany.


Bo Yan

My name is Bo Yan, a Ph.D. candidate working in the STKO lab. I'm interested in geospatial semantics, geographic information retrieval, and leveraging machine learning models in the geospatial domain. Before joining STKO, I obtained my bachelor's degree at Wuhan University. My industry experience includes internships at ESRI, HERE Technologies, and LinkedIn. Please visit my personal webpage for a detailed list of projects and publications.


Blake Regalia

I studied Computer Science in my undergrad at UCSB and my research now as a PhD student focuses on the computational space/time tradeoffs of storing and querying geospatial knowledge graphs. This happens to be a quite niche and oppportunistic research topic as there are not many researchers studying these exact problems. You can see some of the work I've done below:


Rui Zhu

My name is Rui Zhu, a Ph.D. candidate at the Department of Geography, University of California, Santa Barbara. My major is Geographical Information Science (GIS) with an emphasis in spatial analysis, geospatial semantics and geostatistics under the advise of Dr. Krzysztof Janowicz and Dr. Phaedon Kyriakidis. Recently, my Ph.D. research focuses on investigating the necessity and modeling of high-order spatial dependence, with the hypothesis that such non-pairwise spatial statistical approaches could help us understand more complex geospatial phenomenoa. Meanwhile, applying spatial statistics into geospatial semantic research is another research of mine. I got my master in Information Science from University of Pittsburgh. In the Geoinformatics Laboratory, I involved in many projects and research topics, including the PAM (Personalized Accessible Maps), PNS (Pedestrian Navigation Services), and the selection of landmarks for navigation guidance. I also did some work related to information visualization and spatiotemporal data mining.


Gengchen Mai

I am Gengchen Mai, a 3rd year MA/PhD student in the Department of Geography, University of California, Santa Barbara. Under the guidance of Dr. Krzysztof Janowicz, I study GIScience, Geographic Information Retrieval, Geospatial Semantics, NLP and Knowledge Representation at STKO Lab. I got my M.A. degree from the same lab at 2017 Fall. During the summer of 2017, I did a software development & research internship in AppStudio Team, Esri. Inc. Before studying at UCSB, I earned my bachelor's degree in Department of Geographic Information Science, School of Resource and Environmental Sciences, Wuhan University.


Anagha Uppal

I am so excited to be a part of the STKO lab with Dr. Krzysztof Janowicz at the University of California Santa Barbara as a first-year MA/PhD student. Before joining the Geography Department, I took a self-designed, interdisciplinary course of study in Computational Social Science at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville with an emphasis on statistics and an interest in food and environmentalism. I was mentored by Dr. Stephanie Bohon in the university's Sociology Department and Dr. Alex Miller in the Management Department


Meilin Shi

My name is Meilin Shi, a first year MA/PhD student in the Department of Geography, University of California, Santa Barbara. Before joining STKO Lab, I got my Bachelor's degree in Physical Geography from UCSB with Highest Honors. During undergrad, I did research on human mobility visualization, ride-sharing simulation with taxi data and worked as GIS analyst intern at GeoDigital and UCSB Design & Construction Services.


Ling Cai

I am Ling Cai, a member of STKO lab in Geography Department. Previously, I got my Bachelor's degree from Wuhan University in China. At that time, I focused on group recommendation. After that, I studied POI recommendation and urban computation in Chinese Academy of Sciences and got my Master's degree there. Now, as a first year PhD student, I will study semantic embeddings for geospatial features.


Former STKO members

Ph.D. Students


Ph.D. Students with SDSU


Master's Students


Postdoc and Visiting Scholars

  • Dr. Amin Abdalla
  • Dr. Kang Liu
  • Dr. Su Yeon Han (Postdoc at UC Riverside)
  • Dr. DingWen Zhang
  • Dr. Li Gong
  • Dr. Simon Scheider (Assistant Prof at Utrecht University)
  • Dr. Mao Ye (Pinterest)
  • Christoph Mülligann