Ian Muehlenhaus




Director of Program Development, Division of Continuing Studies, University of Wisconsin – Madison, Jan 2020 – Present

       Due to my success in Geography (see below), I was recruited to do the same but at the university level. I now conduct market research, find large-growth markets, and work with stakeholders from across campus to build large-revenue, professional programs and create lifelong customers.

Book Reviewer and Article Writer, Book Browse, LLC, Oct 2019 – Present

       On contract to review pre-release, highly anticipated, books. I prefer non-fiction books. I also write Beyond the Book research articles dealing with interesting themes found in the books I review.

Contract Writer, GetAbstract, Sep 2019 – Jan 2020

       For GetAbstract, I read long, complicated journal articles and broke them down into layperson English. I cover the main points and takeaways for a paying audience in a hurry.

Director, GIS Professional Programs, Department of Geography, University of Wisconsin – Madison, Jul 2015 – Jan 2020

       Hired to build and teach for an online professional master’s program on a shoestring budget in a competitive, saturated market. I succeeded. Then I expanded the program into four programs, bringing in almost $2 million in additional revenue to a department with an annual budget less than that. How did I make it work? Creative copywriting, guerrilla marketing, and hands-on recruitment.

Assistant Professor, Department of Integrated Science and Technology, James Madison University, Aug 2014 – Jul 2015

       The best students I ever had. I loved working here! Alas, my Midwest family could not adapt to living in rural Virginia. I chose my family’s mental health over tenure in a place they did not want to live.

Assistant Professor, Department of Geography and Earth Sciences, University of Wisconsin – La Crosse, Aug 2011 – Aug 2014

       They were a great three years: taught four courses per semester, published research on persuasive maps, secured just under $100,000 in grants, and wrote a textbook.



Ph.D. Geography, University of Minnesota, February 2010

M.Sc. Geography, The Pennsylvania State University, August 2002

B.A. International Studies and Geography, University of Minnesota – Duluth, May 1999



Muehlenhaus, I. (2019). Geography Today: Concepts, Issues, and Technology (I. Muehlenhaus, Ed.), ABC-CLIO.

Muehlenhaus, I. (2014). Web Cartography: Map Design for Interactive and Mobile Devices.  Boca Raton, FL: CRC Press.



Muehlenhaus, I. (forthcoming). “Overcoming Arkoudaphobia: The Truth about North American Bear Attacks,” BookBrowse

Muehlenhaus, I. (2021). “The Falsity of a Real Reality,” BookBrowse

Muehlenhaus, I. (2020). “Libraries and Other Imagined Communities,” BookBrowse

Mrozek, S. (2020). “Gamification and AI: Go Directly to Jail, Do Not Pass Go,” BookBrowse

Muehlenhaus, I. (2020). “Metempsychosis, Transmigration and Mesmerism,” BookBrowse

Muehlenhaus, I. (2020). “Viruses and Evolution.” BookBrowse

Mrozek, S. (2020). “American Complicity in Chinese Authoritarianism,” BookBrowse

Muehlenhaus, I. (2020). “Could COVID-19 Spark Lasting Change?BookBrowse

Muehlenhaus, I. (2020). “Russia's Government Resigns: What Does it Mean?BookBrowse

Muehlenhaus, I. (2019). An Interview with JP Gritton, Author of Wyoming,” BookBrowse

Muehlenhaus, I. (2013). “Google Street View: An Invasion of Privacy?” ABC-CLIO

Muehlenhaus, I. (2013). “How to Read a Good Map,” NASA’s Global Climate Change Blog

Muehlenhaus, I. (2012). “How Technology Has Changed Perceptions of Human Geography,” ABC-CLIO


SELECT BOOK REVIEWS (600-1500 words)


Muehlenhaus, I. (forthcoming). “Best Laid Plans: A Nora Best Mystery #1” by Gwen Florio. BookBrowse Recommends

Muehlenhaus, I. (2021). “Fundamentals: 10 Keys to Reality” by Frank Wilczek. BookBrowse Recommends, Jan 20

Muehlenhaus, I. (2020). “The Book Collectors: A Band of Syrian Rebels and the Stories That Carried Them Through a War” by Delphine Minoui. BookBrowse Recommends, Nov 18

Mrozek, S. (2020). “We Have Been Harmonized: Life in China’s Surveillance State” by Kai Strittmatter, BookBrowse Recommends, Sep 16

Muehlenhaus, I. (2020). “Crossings” by Alex Landragin. BookBrowse Recommends, Aug 8

Muehlenhaus, I. (2020). “Ruthie Fear” by Maxim Loskutoff. BookBrowse First Impressions. Jul 13

Muehlenhaus, I. (2020). “Some Assembly Required: Decoding Four Billion Years of Life, from Ancient Fossils to DNA” by Neil Shubin. BookBrowse Recommends, May 6

Muehlenhaus, I. (2020). “The Catalyst: How to Change Anyone’s Mind” by Jonah Goldberg. BookBrowse Recommends, Apr 8

Muehlenhaus, I. (2020). “The Sundown Motel,” by Simone St. James. BookBrowse First Impressions

Muehlenhaus, I. (2020). “Between Two Fires: Truth, Ambition, and Compromise in Putin's Russia” by Joshua Yaffa. BookBrowse Recommends, Jan 20

Muehlenhaus, I. (2019). “Wyoming: A Novel” by J.P. Gritton. BookBrowse Recommends, Nov 13

Muehlenhaus, I. (2014). Review: “The World at Their Fingertips: Eighteenth-Century British Two-Sheet Double Hemisphere World Maps,” by Geoff Armitage and Ashley Baynton-Williams. Cartographic Perspectives.

Muehlenhaus, I. (2012). Review: “Visualize This,” by Nathan Yau. Cartography and Geographic Information Society Journal, 39(3): 170-172

Muehlenhaus, I. (2011). Review: “GIS Cartography: A Guide to Effective Map Design,” by Gretchen Peterson. Cartographic Perspectives, 70: 66-67

Muehlenhaus, I. (2004). Review: “American Empire: Roosevelt's Geographer and the Prelude to Globalization,” by N. Smith. Arab World Geographer, 7 (3), 211-214




Muehlenhaus, I. (2021). “The Raspberry Pi 400: Taking Me Back to My Gen X Roots, and It Feels Fantastic,” www.muehlenhaus.com

Muehlenhaus, I. (2021). “Hitman: World of Assassination on Google Stadia,” www.muehlenhaus.com

Muehlenhaus, I. (2021). “Casual Gamer? Google Stadia is Made for You,” www.muehlenhaus.com

Muehlenhaus, I. (2020). Foreign Exchange Kid. Feature-Length Screenplay.

Muehlenhaus, I. (2020). Warroad. Feature-Length Screenplay Treatment.

Muehlenhaus, I. (2017). “10 Things Every GIS Professional Needs to Know about Map Design,” www.muehlenhaus.com

Muehlenhaus, I. (2014). “Reinventing the Syllabus: From Boring Legal Document to Motivational Tool,” www.muehlenhaus.com



Associate Editor, Journal of Maps, 2012-present

Editorial Board Member, Cartographic Perspectives Journal, 2010-present

       Peer Reviewer for Following Journals:

Applied Geography                                                                                    Future Internet

Annals of the AAG                                                                                     Political Geography

Journal of Maps                                                                                           Polymath

Cartographica                                                                                               International Journal of GIS

Journal of Spatial Science                                                                      Guilford Press (Book Blurb)            

CRC Press (Book Proposal Reviewer)                                               Nomad Press (Book Blurb)



Muehlenhaus, I. (2019). “Banal Cartography: A Critique of Quantitative Content Analysis in Cartographic Research,” Proceedings of the International Cartographic Association

Muehlenhaus, I. (2018). “Internet Mapping,” The Routledge Handbook of Mapping and Cartography (A. Kent and P. Vujakovic, Ed.). London and New York: 375-387

B. Jenny, D.M. Stephen, I. Muehlenhaus, et al. (2018). “Design Principles for Origin Destination Flow Maps,” Cartography & Geographic Information Science 45 (1), 62-75

B. Jenny, D.M. Stephen, I. Muehlenhaus, et al. (2017). “Force-Directed Layout of Origin-Destination Flow Maps,” International Journal of GIS 31 (8)

Muehlenhaus, I. (2014). “Looking at the Big Picture: Adapting Film Theory to Examine Map Form, Meaning, and Aesthetic,” Cartographic Perspectives 77: 15-31

Muehlenhaus, I. (2014). “Going Viral: The Look of Online Persuasive Maps,” Cartographica, 49(1): 18-34

Muehlenhaus, I. (2013). “The Design and Composition of Persuasive Maps,” Cartography and Geographic Information Sciences (CaGIS), November, 40(5): 401-414

Muehlenhaus, I. (2012). “If Looks Could Kill: The Impact of Rhetorical Styles in Persuasive Geocommunication,” The Cartographic Journal, 49(4): 361-375

Muehlenhaus, I. (2011). “Another Goode Method: How to Use Quantitative Content Analysis to Study Change in Thematic Map Design,” Cartographic Perspectives, 69: 7-29

Muehlenhaus, I. (2011). “Genealogy that counts: Using Content Analysis to Explore the History of Persuasive Maps,” Cartographica, 46(1): 28-40

Muehlenhaus, I. (2011). “From Print to Mobile mApps: How to Take Adobe Illustrator Files, Add Pinch-to-Zoom, and Put Them on Android Market,” Cartographic Perspectives, 69: 55-66

Muehlenhaus, I. (2007). “World Systems Theory” and “Weapons of Mass Destruction” entries in The Encyclopedia of Environment and Society. Thousand Oaks, CA: SAGE

Oas, I. (2005). “Shifting the Iron Curtain of Kantian Peace: NATO Expansion and the Magyars,” in The Geography of War and Peace (Colin Flint, Ed.). Oxford University Press, 395-414




Plenary Talk, “Creative Destruction in Professional GIS Education,” Esri Education Conference, San Diego, CA, 2017

Lecture, “The Importance of Design in Visual Communication,” Digital Mapping for Social Good, TechChange, August 18, 2016

Keynote Talk, “Why Cartography Still Matters,” WLIA Conference, February 11, 2016

Banquet Pekachu, “Maps as Visual Copy,” North American Cartographic Information Society Meeting, Minneapolis, Minnesota, October 16, 2015

Lecture, “Back to the Drawing Board? Web Map Design in an Era of Flat Design,” Masters in GIS Career Fair Keynote Speaker, University of Minnesota, Mar ch27, 2014

Lecture, “Maps as Rhetorical Weapons (or: Persuading People to See It Your Way),” Yi-Fu Tuan Lecture Series, University of Wisconsin – Madison, March 7, 2014

Muehlenhaus, I. (2014). Map Design for Maximum Impact, Wisconsin Land Information Alliance Annual Conference, Madison, Wisconsin, Feb 13 – WLIA BEST PRESENTATION AWARD

Muehlenhaus, I. (2013). Effective Geocommunication in an Era of Data Overload,
NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland, Mar 13

Muehlenhaus, I. (2012). The Impact of Rhetorical Design in Geocommunication,
CartoTalk Lecture Series, Oregon State University, Oct 22

Muehlenhaus, I. (2008). Lost in Transformation: Nationalism in Post-Soviet Europe,
National Geographic Society, Washington, D.C., July 14



YouTube Channel. (2013-present). “Map Design & GIS Tutorials,” 500,000 Views. 2000 Subscribers. 

Workshop. (2019). “Cartography: A Primer,” Professional GIS Workshop, Wisconsin Land Information Association Annual Conference, February

Workshop. (2017). “10 Design Tricks to Help You Make Amazing Maps,” Northern Area GIS Meeting, Ashland, WI, December

Workshop. (2017). “How to Design Persuasive Maps,” Professional GIS Workshop, Wisconsin Land Information Association Annual Conference, February

Demonstration. (2016). “Using Microsoft Sway!” Active Teaching Workshop, UW-Madison, September

Workshop. (2016). “Recruiting the Silent Funnel: Getting Students in Seats,” UW-Madison, Division of Continuing Studies, June

Tutorial. (2014). “Content Analysis of Maps (A How to Demonstration),” YouTube, November

Interview. (2013). “Interview with Dr. Ian Muehlenhaus,” NASA’s Global Climate Change Blog

Pro-Bono Workshop. (2013). Creating Dynamic Content with Google Maps for Use in Your Classroom, Center for Teaching and Learning, UW – La Crosse, September 25

Pro-Bono Consultant. (2012). Art in American Communities Web Mapping Project,
National Endowment for the Arts (NEA), Washington, D.C., November 2011 – April 2012

Consultant. (2009). Spatial Dynamics of Austria and Central Europe in the 21st Century, K-12 Educators Geography Workshop, Macalester College, St. Paul, MN, February 14

Consultant. (2008). My Wonderful World, National Geographic Society, Remote Contract, September

Faculty. (2008). European Borders K-12 Institute, National Geographic Society, Wash. D.C., July




UW-Madison Chancellor’s Office Development Grant, 2018-2019, $500,000

National Science Foundation Grant, $81,000, Collaborative Proposal: Flow Maps for Movement Visualization: Digital Generation and Cognitive Evaluation, Principal Investigator: Ian Muehlenhaus, Funded via Geography and Spatial Sciences Program Aug 2014 – Jul 2016

International Development Fund Grant, $3,250, UW – La Crosse, June 2013

GIS and Visualization Curriculum Redesign Grant, $10,000, UW – La Crosse, March 2013




National and International Organizations

Chair, Commission on Map Design, International Cartographic Association, 2019-present

Director, Cartography and Geographical Information Society Board, 2014-2017

Vice-Chair, Chair, and Past-Chair, Cartography Specialty Group of the AAG, 2011-2015

Local & Community Organizations

       Board, McFarland Education Foundation, 2019-2020

       Advisor, Anime Club, University of Wisconsin – La Crosse

       Advisor, Women’s Rugby Club, University of Wisconsin – River Falls



Muehlenhaus, I. (2018). “Words Matter: Copywriting for Spatial Visualization,” American Association of Geographers, New Orleans, LA

Muehlenhaus, I., Fu, I., and Gruley K. (2016). “Personalized Learning in an Online Program: Instructional Design, Assessment, and Programming,” UW-Madison Teaching and Learning Symposium, May 18

Muehlenhaus, I. (2014). Adapting Theories of Form, Meaning, and Style for Map Research, North American Cartographic Information Society (NACIS) Annual Conference, Pittsburgh, PA, Oct 9

Muehlenhaus, I. (2014). Adapting Film Theory for Cartographic Analysis, AutoCarto Conference, Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Oct 6

Muehlenhaus, I. (2014). Adapting Film Theory to Analyze Map Narrative, Form, and Aesthetic, Association of American Geographers (AAG) Annual Meeting, Tampa, FL

Muehlenhaus, I. (2013). Web Map Aesthetics for Effective Communication, NACIS Annual Conference, Greenville, South Carolina, Oct 10

Muehlenhaus, I. (2013.) Four Rhetorical Styles of Persuasive Geocommunication: A Taxonomy, International Cartographic Conference (ICC), International Cartographic Association (ICA), Dresden, Germany, Aug 29

Muehlenhaus, I. (2012). “Going Viral: The Evolution of Online Persuasive Maps” NACIS Annual Conference, Portland, Oregon, Oct 17

Muehlenhaus, I. (2012). “Some of These Maps Are Not Like the Others…” A Framework for Measuring How Design Impacts Map Reader Reactions to Spatial Data, AAG Annual Conference, New York

Muehlenhaus, I. (2011). mApp to the Future: Map Apps and the Future of Mapping, NACIS Annual Conference, Madison, Wisconsin, Oct

Dooley, M. and I. Muehlenhaus. (2010). Mapping UFO Sighting Data: Pitfalls and Possibilities, NACIS Annual Conference, St. Petersburg, Florida, Oct




Assessed Certificate, Computer Vision – Object Detection with OpenCV and Python, Coursera, 2020

Assessed Certificate, Python Dynamic HTML Web Server, Coursera, 2020

Assessed Certificate, Python 3 Programming Specialization, 5 Courses, University of Michigan, 2020

Assessed Certificate, Python for Everybody Specialization, 5 Courses, University of Michigan, 2020

Assessed Certificate, Web Application Technologies and Django, University of Michigan, 2020

Assessed Certificate, Google IT Support Professional Certificate, Google, 2020

Completion Certificate, Linux for Developers, Linux Foundation, 2020

Completion Certificate, Bash Scripting, LinkedIn Learning, 2020

Completion Certificate, Unix for Mac OS X Users, LinkedIn Learning, 2020

Completion Certificate, Video Script Writing, LinkedIn Learning, 2019

Completion Certificate, Content Marketing: Social Media, 2019

Completion Certificate, Learning Screenwriting, 2019

Completion Certificate, Writing Ad Copy, 2019

Completion Certificate, Screenwriting with Final Draft 10, 2019

Completion Certificate, Persuasive Coaching, 2019

Completion Certificate, Persuasive Selling, 2019

Certificate, Online Course Design and Teaching, Division of Continuing Studies UW – Madison, 2017

Completion Certificate, Time Management Tips, 2016

Completion Certificate, Content Marketing: Newsletters, Lynda.com, 2016

Certificate, Online Instructor Training Course, Center for Teaching and Learning, UW – La Crosse, 2010

Intermediate-Advanced Certification in Hungarian. (2005). University of Debrecen Language School




Writing and Composition Software

Markdown; FinalDraft; MS Word; Apple Pages; Visual Studio Code; Brackets

Graphic Design, Data Analysis, Media, and Presentation Software

Adobe Illustrator (strong), Photoshop (proficient), InDesign (proficient), and Audition (proficient); SPSS; MS Excel & PowerPoint; Apple Keynote; TechSmith Camtasia; Kaltura; iMovie

Operating System Administration

MacOS; Debian Linux (Ubuntu; Ubuntu Server; Kali; Raspberry OS); Windows 10; iOS; Android

Coding and Web Communication

#Markdown (strong); Python3 (strong); HTML5 (strong); JavaScript (proficient); CSS (strong); SQL (proficient); Django (basic); Linux CLI (proficient); Storyline Articulate (proficient); WordPress