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Jesse Anderson
Geospatial Data Scientist

About Me

Since I was a child, I've been fascinated with place — the unwieldy mixture of land and landscape, distance and terrain. When my family would go on road trips, I'd follow the route on a paper map every mile of the way. I had to have a window seat on any airplane ride, and my eyes would stay glued to the ground below. This fascination has led to a lifelong passion to better understand the world and the creatures which inhabit it "from above", using geospatial data and tools. This passion continues to run through all the work I do. I'd love to help you with your next project. Contact me today!


I've worked with a variety of private companies, non-profit and governmental organizations including Microsoft, The American Farmland Trust, The U.S. Bureau of Land Management and The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service. In every project, I strive to provide clear and actionable information and work steadfast until this goal is met.

Analysis and Modeling

I put geospatial data to work to understand patterns of ecosystems, plants, animals and humans across the terrestrial landscape. In every project, I strive to apply the best predictive modeling and machine learning approaches and work with the most relevant satellite imagery and other spatial and non-spatial data.

Geospatial Data Engineering

I develop and execute workflows to collect, process and analyze varied spatial and not-so-spatial data, including satellite and aerial imagery and field and other ground-based data, both locally and in the cloud.

Web Mapping Applications

I create full stack web applications to serve maps, graphs, tables, and reports. I utilize the latest front and backend tools and frameworks to make nimble, cost-effective, mature products.


I strive to use the best tools and languages for the problem at hand. I love learning new things but pride myself on knowing when when more mature, stable options are best.


Tools, Frameworks and Applications

Selected Projects

I've worked on dozens of projects leveraging the technologies I listed above. I've selected a few with publicly available code and results which I hope you will enjoy learning more about.

Digital Earth Pacific

As part of an international team, I lead development of a number of spatial products across 22 Pacific nations. Initial beta products include mapping coastlines over 2+ decades, mangroves, and surface water. I also contribute to the establishment and support of infrastructure, and patterns and principals for developing products at scale.

  • Languages: Python
  • Key Software: xarray/dask, rasterio, OGR/GDAL, terria.js
  • Platforms: Azure, Microsoft Planetary Computer/Pangeo

Change in Human Impacts over Time

I developed a deep learning model to estimate the degree of human impacts across the contiguous U.S. for agriculture, transportation, and urban factors. The results depict the intensity of each impact in a clear and consistent way and could be readily integrated with existing projects and workflows. Built on the Microsoft Planetary Computer, this project utilized Landsat 8 imagery and a training dataset based on various publicly available data sources and a UNet artificial neural-network.

  • Languages: Python, Bash, R
  • Key Software: pytorch, rasterio, xarray/dask, OGR/GDAL
  • Platforms: Azure, Azure ML, Microsoft Planetary Computer

Assessment of Human Impacts on Agricultural Lands across the Contiguous U.S.

I built this interactive website to display multi-factor results of a effort to assess changes in the footprint and quality of agricultural lands over time. I also conducted the county and state-level statistical analyses of landscape change and assisted with the development of the spatial models themselves. This website has formed the cornerstone of an ongoing effort to increase awareness and understanding of the impacts of urban and rural development on important farmland in the U.S.

  • Language: Javascript, Python
  • Key Software: mapbox-gl, pandas, R tidyverse
  • Platforms: Google Earth Engine, Google App Engine

Ecological Drought Impacts in the Upper Missouri Basin

I built this interactive website to display case study results from the application of a new and robust framework to understand the causes of ecosystem change and degradation. Check out the "Montana Case Study" section for a richly interactive visualization of model results and maps of a variety of ecological covariates for an important watershed.

  • Languages: Javascript, R
  • Key Software: mapbox-gl, d3.js, Hugo