Dr. Pete Doucette

Dr. Pete Doucette

Acting Director, Earth Resources Observation and Science (EROS) Center, USGS

Dr. Pete Doucette is the Acting Director for the Earth Resources and Observation Science (EROS) Center in Sioux Falls, South Dakota. EROS is part of the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) in the U.S. Department of Interior (DOI). The USGS mission is to monitor, analyze, and predict current and evolving dynamics of complex human and natural Earth-system interactions and to deliver actionable information at scales and timeframes relevant to decision makers. In support of that mission, EROS develops and operates Landsat satellite missions, is the steward of Landsat imagery and other remotely sensed data, and the provider of land change science data, information, and knowledge to aid in the understanding of a changing Earth. Since 1972 Landsat satellites have imaged the entire Earth’s landmass on a regular basis, which provides a capability to continuously track and characterize changes in land cover, use, and condition in order to support decisions relevant to environmental management and policy. Ensuring the continued development of Landsat satellites to satisfy user needs well into the future is the goal of the Sustainable Land Imaging (SLI) Program, which is a joint effort between NASA and the USGS/DOI. 

In order to reliably forecast future land change, we need to understand how and why it’s changed in the past. To that end, Pete’s vision is to advance the use of spatial data science to better explain, model and estimate changes to the Earth's land surface through time using high performance and cloud computing environments, machine/deep learning, and harmonized Earth observation data.

Pete began his career in geospatial data science in 1990, which has included positions with the federal government, a national lab, and the private sector. His past activities include research & development in remote sensing, machine learning, computer vision, spatial analysis, and geographic information systems (GIS). He has a Ph.D. in Spatial Information Science & Engineering (UMaine), a M.S. in Geomatics (Purdue), and B.S. in Physics (UMaine).