Palaiologos Palaiologou

Hailing from Greece, Palaiologos Palaiologou, better known as Pal, has spent the last few years in the Pacific Northwest to further his studies in geography and forest management and consider how these factors contribute to the changing presence of fires in our landscapes.

In his youth, Pal developed an interest in geography and its effects on global societies, which directed him to gain a better understanding of the effects geography plays on countries and regions of the world, through university studies. After primary schooling, he studied at the University of the Aegean in Greece, obtaining a Bachelor’s degree in Geography. He then went on to earn a Master’s in Geoinformatics and PhD in Wildfire Behavior Modeling & Fire Effects Assessment.

His first visit to the United States resulted in a seven-month residency in Portland, OR in collaboration with Portland State University. For the last year and a half, Pal has returned to Oregon with support from the USDA Forest Service International Visitor Program and Dr. Alan Ager, to work with the USFS Forestry Sciences Lab at Oregon State University and OSU Fire Science Professor, Dr. John Bailey. When his international visitor program concludes later this academic year, Pal will return to Greece to share the knowledge and insight he has gained from his scholarly residency in Oregon and the PNW.

Pal’s research with John Bailey and Alan Ager has been intimately linked with the U.S.’s new National Cohesive Wildland Fire Management Strategy, which includes using fire behavior simulations to understand risk transmission and scale mismatches in fire management planning. Some of the factors comprising this strategy require proactively pushing preventative rather than reactive policies regarding fire management, creating fire adapted communities, restoring and maintaining landscapes and achieving more effective response to fire.

Looking towards the future, Pal would prefer to participate in University level teaching and research instead of securing a research position for a dedicated organization or company. He hopes to share his knowledge and understanding of fire behavior to better equip Greece to adapt to and manage their communities within a fire management lens. Analogous to his career ambitions, Pal mentioned that he is “fishing for swordfish now!”—the fewer, big fish that are more difficult and rewarding to catch. “Sure, there’s less chance to catch something,” he proposes, “but when you do, it’s a rewarding experience!”

Mill tour in Eastern Oregon. Photo courtesy of Pal





Published by Savannah Stanton, CoF International Programs

Completion/Archive Date: 
Sunday, July 15, 2018