Sylvio Mannel, Ph.D.



Cirriculum Vitae

GIS/Remote Sensing

Curriculum Vitae


Dr. Sylvio Mannel facilitated several GIS research and education programs in South Dakota. His expertise in GIS/Remote Sensing and earth science goes back more than ten years. His qualifications are visible in research, outreach and publications (e.g. International Journal of Remote Sensing). He secured several geospatial outreach/research grants. As a board member of Native View he plays an essential role in bringing Native American geospatial needs to a nationwide attention. He teaches graduate and undergraduate GIS classes, Remote Sensing, Environmental Science and Digital Photography.


  • GIS: ArcGIS, ArcIMS, 3D, ArcGlobe, ArcScene, GoogleEarth, basic AutoCAD,
  • Remote Sensing: ENVI, IDL, ERDAS, handheld spectrometer, multi- and hyperspectral data
  • Other computer: Adobe Photoshop; basic video editing
  • Field: GPS (Trimble, Garmin), professional surveying, environmental ground surveys, first part of the South Dakota Arborist Certification
  • Oral/Writing skills: (grant writing, peer-reviewed publications and presentations)
  • Distance teaching: pic-tel and web based (i.e. Moodle, Blackboard)
  • Languages: Fluent in German

Professional preparation

  • South Dakota School of Mines and Technology, Rapid City, SD and South Dakota State University, Brookings, SD, (2000 to 2003)
    • Ph.D. Program (Dissertation: Contribution of remote sensing to forest inventories in the Black Hills, SD – A focus on reference data acquisition, Decision Tree classification and hyperspectral versus multispectral data)
  • University of Potsdam; Potsdam, Germany, (1993 to 1999).
    • Masters of Science degree in Geo-Ecology
  • Augustana College; Sioux Falls, SD, (1996 to 1997)
  • Liverpool Institute of Higher Education; Liverpool, Great Britain, (1995)
  • Professional surveyor, CAD and GIS Analyst


  • GIS/Remote Sensing Manager, Oglala Lakota College, Kyle, SD (since 2003)
  • Graduate Research, SDSM&T, Rapid City, SD (2000 – 2003)
  • Guest Scientist, USGS EROS Data Center, Sioux Falls, SD (1997, 1999, and 2000-2001)
  • GIS/CAD/Surveyor; Frohmann Surveying, Potsdam, Germany (1999).

Recent publications  

Mannel, S.; Winkelman, K; Phelps, S. and Fredenberg, M. Applications of a GIS Program to Tribal Research: its Benefits, Challenges and Extensions to the Community, Journal of Geoscience Education (in press)

Mannel. S. and Arobba, B, Interactive map of Pine Ridge Reservation using Google Map, (2007)

Platt, S., Fast Horse, Z., Mannel, S., Comes Killing, C., and Rainwater T.R. A Herpetofaunal Survey of Southwestern South Dakota with an Emphasis on Species of Conservation Concern. Journal of Kansas Herpetology, Number 20 (2006)

Mannel, S.; Rumble, M. A.; Price, M.; Juntti, T. M.; and Hua, D. (2006). Comparison of combinations of sighting devices and target objects for establishing circular plots in the field. Res. Pap. RMRS-RP-60. Fort Collins, CO: U.S. Department of Agriculture, Forest Service, Rocky Mountain Research Station. 5 p.

Mannel, S.; Price, M. and Hua, D. (2006) A method to multiply training and test data, International Journal of Remote Sensing, (2006, Vol. 27, Iss. 3-4)

Mannel, S. and Winkelman, K. (2005) How to set up a GIS program at a tribal college. ESRI International User Conference, San Diego, CA, July 26, 2005.

Mannel, S.; Price, M. and Hua, D. (2003) Comparison of Decision Tree Analysis with more Traditional Classification Methods using TM and AVIRIS Scenes over the Black Hills, SD, Proceedings of the 11th JPL Airborne Earth Science Workshop, 2003

Wylie B.K.; Meyer D.J.; Tieszen L.L.; and Mannel S. (2002) Satellite mapping of surface biophysical parameters at the biome scale over the North American grasslands - A case study, Remote Sensing of Environment: (2002, Vol. 79 Iss. 2)

Mannel, S.; Hua, D.  and Price, M. (2002) Forest Classification of the Black Hills, SD Using Decision Tree Analysis on TM and AVIRIS data, Proceedings South Dakota Academy of Science

Mannel, S. (2002) AVIRIS for Dummies "How To" webguide for working with hyperspectral AVIRIS data

Mannel, S.; Price, M. and Hua, D. (2000) Forest Type Classification Using TM Images Over the Black Hills, SD, Proceedings of Eight Forest Service Remote Sensing Applications Conference, Albuquerque, New Mexico, April 10 - 14, 2000

Student Publications

Byrd, S. Ferguson, B. and Mannel S. (2006). Tradition and Technology: Using Waypoints to Connect to the Past, Proceedings SD Academy of Science.

Comes Killing, C. (2006) Ghost Canyon, Video.

Comes Killing, C. and Mannel S. (2006). Lakota Land – Mapping and Preserving Lakota History, Proceedings SD Academy of Science.

Lee McDowell, S. Mannel. (2006). Battle Creek Watershed Assessment, AIHEC, Green Bay, WI.

Returns, E. and Mannel S. (2006). Pine Ridge Reservation - Historical Sites, Proceedings SD Academy of Science.

Thompson, M. and Mannel S. (2006). The Black Hills Red Race-Track, Proceedings SD Academy of Science.

Voormann, C. (2006) Lakota Land, Health & Heritage Educational Summer Program, Report. 

Eastman, A.; Tinant, J., Mannel S. (2005). Using GIS to promote Skyline Wilderness Park in Rapid City, SD. Abstract Reference Number: 10662. AGU Fall Meeting, 5-9 December, San Francisco.

Comes Killing, C. and Mannel S. (2005). Lakota Land - Mapping historical and recreational Native American areas. Abstract Reference Number: 10810, AGU Fall Meeting, 5-9 December, San Francisco.

Synergistic activities

  • Started GIS/Remote Sensing lab at OLC
  • Supported GIS program and education at Sinte Gleska University and Augustana College
  • GIS/GPS workshops for firefighters, OST Water Resources, OST land use office, K-12 teachers
  • Created maps for Native American issues (election map, diabetes, mountain lion sightings, etc.)
  • Provided technical support to fellow scientists, especially in the field of hyperspectral data
  • Developed GIS and remote sensing research in the fields of diabetes, bison impact and Lakota history

Recent presentations

  • 10/7/2006 Board of Trustees retreat, Oglala Lakota College,
  • 5/4/2006 Black Hills Mapping Group, Rapid City, SD
  • 4/8/2006 Native American conference
  • 10/3/2005 Tribal College Forum/Native View conference, Denver, CO
  • 8/11/2005, ESRI International GIS conference, San Diego, CA

Research and other grant funded activities

  • PI on “Lakota Land”, NSF grant to map Lakota history (2004-2007)
  • Subgrant with Universities Space Research Association (USRA) and NASA (2006-2008)
  • Co-PI “Buffalo-Bird-Grass”, USDA grant to detect bison grazing patterns (2004-2006)
  • Collaborator, BRIN grant, mapping and analyzing diabetes distribution on Pine Ridge Reservation (2004-2006)
  • Subgrant with Space Grant Multi-State "NativeView Connections" WFD Program (2004-2005)

Participation in professional organizations

  • Native View (board member)
  • Black Hills Mapping Consortium
  • ATTA (Alliance of Tribal Tourism Advocates)
  • Editorial Board Member: International Journal of Remote Sensing
  • Review Board Member: NASA, NSF grant proposals

Additional information

  • Veteran of Allied Forces - German Army (1992-1993)


  • Eugene Napier, Director of USGS Central States Region, USGS/EROS Data Center, Sioux Falls, SD 57198, Phone: (605) 594-6088, E-mail:
  • Dr. Kim Winkelman, President, Comanche Nation College, 1608 SW 9th St., Lawton, OK 73501, Phone: (580) 591-0203, E-Mail:
  • Dr. Maribeth Price, GIS Professor, South Dakota School of Mines and Technology, 501 E St. Joseph St., Rapid City, SD 57701, Phone: (605) 594-1290, E-Mail:


Cirriculum Vitae

GIS/Remote Sensing