Degree Name

MS (Master of Science)



Date of Award


Committee Chair or Co-Chairs

Arpita Nandi

Committee Members

Andrew Joyner, Ingrid Luffman


Debris-slides are one of the most frequently occurring geological hazards in metasedimentary rocks of the Anakeesta ridge in Great Smoky Mountains National Park (GRSM), which often depends on the influence of multiple causing factors or geo-factors such as geological structures, slope, topographic elevation, land use, soil type etc. or a combination of these factors. The main objective of the study was to understand the control of geo-factors in initiating debris-slides using different knowledge and data-driven methods in GIS platform. The study was performed in three steps: (1) Evaluation of geometrical relationship between geological discontinuity and topographic orientation in initiation of debris-slides, (2) Preparation of knowledge-driven debris-slide susceptibility model, and (3) Preparation of data-driven debris-slide susceptibility models and compare their efficacy. Performance of the models were evaluated mostly using area under Receiver Operating Characteristic (ROC) curve, which revealed that the models were statistically significant.

Document Type

Thesis - unrestricted


Copyright by the authors.