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News & Press: Foundation News

Paul Geoerg Awarded Guylène Proulx, OC Scholarship

Tuesday, March 7, 2017  
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The SFPE Foundation announced that the third Dr. Guylène Proulx, OC Scholarship has been awarded to Paul Geoerg, a doctoral candidate in fire safety engineering at University of Wuppertal and research fellow at the Federal Institute for Material and Testing BAM in Berlin, Germany.


This scholarship was established in 2014 in honor of the late Dr. Guylène Proulx, OC, an outstanding researcher in human factors and human behavior related to fire and a passionate advocate for fire safety awareness. Her enduring legacy is the body of her research work, as well as the future research this annual scholarship will enable.


The scholarship will assist in funding Geoerg’s research project, “ISAS—Increasing Personal Safety in Aging Societies.” His research is investigating how pedestrians move in heterogenous populations using parameter studies, both laboratory and simulation, and asks how the safety of persons with age-induced limitations can be increased in home-related incidents, especially when considering unique limitations such as audio, visual, motor and mental. It is expected that the results of this research will contribute to improved visual and audio aids, guidelines for improvement of response times of personnel and to material development to counter-act age-induced limitations.


Dr. Armin Seyfried, head/chair of the Department of Computer Simulation for Fire Safety and Pedestrian Traffic, University of Wuppertal, who is supervising this research, explains, “This project will contribute to a better understanding of pedestrian movement considering age-related impairments, and the expected findings will complete the collection of engineering data sets for an increasing part of the population that has rising life expectancies and decreasing levels of fitness.”


The results of the study will be presented at a future SFPE conference.


“Guylène Proulx was one of the preeminent researchers in the field of human behavior in emergencies. This research honors her legacy through focusing on a growing segment of our society that has not seen a lot of focused research in this area,” said Dr. Frederick Mowrer, chair of the SFPE Foundation’s Board of Governors. “This segment of our population often has physical limitations and less mobility that requires separate data collection and analysis.”


For more information about the scholarship, or to make a donation to the SFPE Foundation, visit the Foundation website.

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