GEOG 596i/596k
Independent Study in Geospatial Intelligence

Instructor Information



photo of Dennis Bellafiore

Dennis Bellafiore

  • Skype phone: djbellafiore
  • Office phone: (717) 826-0606 (The country code for the United States is 1)
  • FAX: (814) 865-1564 (The country code for the United States is 1)
  • Email: Please use the course e-mail system (see the Inbox link in Canvas)
  • Availability: Please call or e-mail me to schedule a time that is convenient for you.

Dr. Dennis J. Bellafiore has co-authored and been an instructor for GEOG 885, Advanced Analytic Methods for the Geospatial Intelligence Professional; GEOG 497B, Location Intelligence for Business; GEOG 597I, Special Topics in Geospatial Intelligence Futures; GEOG 479, Cyber-Geography in Geospatial Intelligence; and GEOG 497i, Introduction to Geospatial Critical Thinking: The Fundamentals.

Outside of Penn State, Dennis serves as a consultant and coach to large and small businesses, education, industry, not-for-profit, government, and community service organizations. He worked for thirteen years at Digital Equipment Corporation (DEC), including as the global account manager of its largest corporate end-user customer, as manager of sales & marketing for total quality management, and as international strategic marketing director of office document systems for the company.

Dennis has consulted on many GIS and IT projects at state, regional, county, and local government levels in Pennsylvania. He has been involved in geospatial requirements analysis, strategic planning, project management, project scoping, customer relationship management, business development, marketing, and organizational consulting involving all aspects of geospatial application development and implementation. He is a member of the Academy of Management, Sigma Pi Sigma, Sigma Xi, USGIF, IAFIE, NMIA and SCIP. Dennis holds his Ph. D. in Physics from the University of Pennsylvania. Dennis can be reached by e-mail at (link sends e-mail).


Todd Bacastow

Todd Bacastow

  • Phone: (814) 863-0049 (The country code for the United States is 1)
  • Mobile: (814) 883-7358 (The country code for the United States is 1)
  • FAX: (814) 865-3191 (The country code for the United States is 1)
  • Email: Please use the course e-mail system (see the Ibbox link in Canvas)
  • Availability: My office hours (in person or phone calls) are Monday through Friday, 1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m., Eastern Standard Time.

I am a Professor of Practice for Geospatial Intelligence in Penn State’s College of Earth and Mineral Sciences and the founder and lead faculty of Penn State’s Geospatial Intelligence program. Penn State’s Geospatial Intelligence program is accredited by the United State Geospatial Intelligence Foundation and part of Penn State’s award-winning portfolio of Online Geospatial Education programs (link is external) that has served over 5000 students since 1999.

My current research focuses on determining the optimal training and educational means to improve the sensemaking of the geospatial analyst working as part of an intelligence team. Sensemaking refers to the process by which humans are able to generate explanations for data that are otherwise sparse, noisy, and uncertain.

Before joining Penn State in 1994, I retired from the United States Army where he served in a variety of infantry, engineer, and geospatial intelligence assignments and positions. I was previously an Assistant Professor in the Department of Geography and Computer Science and an Associate Professor in the Department of Geography and Environmental Engineering at the US Military Academy. I hold a BS in Engineering from the United States Military Academy, and a MS and PhD in Geography from Penn State University.