William Bell

Institute for Disaster Management
Senior Research Scientist Emeritus

Institute for Disaster Management

Dr. Bell received his M.A. (Hons) and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Edinburgh, Scotland in the field of Geography, specializing in Micro-Meteorology at the doctoral level. He subsequently worked in Manitoba, Canada attaining tenured full Professorships in Geography and Business Computing, adjunct appointments in Soil Science, Mechanical Engineering and Plant Science, Director of the Geographic Information Systems Laboratory and President of the Manitoba Organization of Faculty Associations.  He worked on a five-year project in Egypt, culminating in the design, equipping and implementation of an applied computing Master’s program at the University of Alexandria.

After a two-year stint as a Vice-President at SNC-Lavalin designing, securing funding  and testing the Manitoba Geospatial System, a private-public center partnership, Dr. Bell moved to the Carl Vinson Institute of Government (CVIOG) at the University of Georgia as a Senior Public Service Associate in information management. From there he moved to the International Center for Tropical Agriculture, Cali, Colombia, in the CGIAR system first as a Data Manager then as the Chief Information Officer. After six years, and due to increased family kidnapping frequency, he returned to the University of Georgia as Director of the Information Technology Outreach Services before accepting a  senior appointment at the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs, Geneva. He was posted to several civil war countries in West Africa and Sudan to design and implement systems for data collection, management and distribution.  In 2004, Dr. Bell returned to the University of Georgia, College of Pharmacy and then to the College of Public Health on its foundation in 2005.

Areas of Expertise
  • Simulation and modeling WMD event impacts
  • Meteorological effects on WMD events
  • Geospatial Systems and data management for WMD events
  • Disaster exercise design and conduct
  • Impact of blast, thermal and radiation interactions on casualties from nuclear events
Current Projects
  • Modeling and Simulation of Weapons of Mass Destruction focusing on casualty estimation and their management.