For a complete list of publications, please see my CV.
I am happy to share any of my publications and/or code if you contact me.

About My Research

My primary research interests focus on what are often called "environmental impact studies." That is, I am interested in studying how the environment impacts (affects) everything else. I am interested in broad applications including environmental impacts on ecosystems, agriculture, and economic damages. Environmental impact problems involve interesting statistical challenges including large datasets, exploiting space-time correlations, establishing causal relationships, and data collection methods.

Most Recent Publications

Christensen, M.F., Heaton, M.J., Rupper, S., Reese, C.S., and Christensen, W.F. "Bayesian Multi-scale Spatio-temporal Modeling of Precipitation in the Indus Watershed," in press at Frontiers in Earth Science.

Heaton, M.J., Olenick, C.R., and Wilhelmi O., "Age-specific Distributed Lag Models for Heat-related Mortality," in press at Environmetrics.

Heaton, M.J., Berrett, C., Pugh, S. and Sloan C., "Modeling Bronchiolitis Incidence Proportions in the Presence of Spatio-temporal Uncertainty," in press at Journal of the American Statistical Association - Applications and Case Studies.

Pugh, S., Heaton, M.J., Svedin, J. and Hansen, N., "Spatio-temporal Lagged Models for Variable Rate Irrigation in Agriculture," in press at Journal of Agricultural, Biological and Environmental Statistics.

Heaton, M.J., Datta, A., Finley, A., Furrer, R., Guhaniyogi, R., Gerber, F., Gramacy, R.B., Guiness, J., Hammerling, D., Katzfuss, M., Lindgren, F., Nychka, D.F., Sun, F. and Zammit-Mangion, A., "A Case Study Competition among Methods for Analyzing Large Spatial Data,"Journal of Agricultural, Biological and Environmental Statistics

Research Grant Awards

"Spatiotemporal decision support systems for recognizing variability and managing precision irrigation" US-Israel Binational Agricultural Research and Development Fund.

"Identifying Stacked Conservation Practices that Optimize Water Use in Agriculture" (2019) Western SARE Research Grant Series.

"An R Shiny App to Facilitate Authentic Data Analysis Experiences for Statistics 121 Students," (2018) BYU College of Physical and Mathematical Sciences HITS Grant Series.

" BYU Safety Modeling FY19" (2018) Utah Department of Transportation

"Integrating Remote Sensing and Spatiotemporal Statistics to Create Water Conserving Precision Irrigation Systems," BYU Interdisciplinary Research Award, May 2018 - May 2020, Co-PI.

"Modeling Environmental Impacts on Bronchiolitis in the Presence of Spatial Uncertainty," National Institutes of Health, National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, June 2015 - June 2017, PI.

"Collaborative Research: Scalable Statistical Validation and Uncertainty Quantification for Large Spatio-Temporal Datasets," National Science Foundation, Computational and Data-Enabled Science and Engineering in Mathematical and Statistical Sciences, August 2014- August 2017, PI for BYU portion.

"Focus Crash Types and Risk Factors," Federal Highway Adminstration, August 2014 - June 2016, PI for BYU portion.


Current Students and Research Projects
  • -- Shelby Taylor; Spatial Mapping of Heat-related Mortalities.
  • -- Celeste Ingersoll; Real-time Spatiotemporal Prediction Systems Respiratory Syncytial Virus.
  • -- Emma Hanks; Spatial Variability in Respiratory Syncytial Virus Seasonality.

Past Students; Research Project; Position at Graduation
  • -- Gabe Adams; Spatial Modeling for Precision Irrigation Systems.; MS Utah State
  • -- Gavin Collins; Spatio-temporal, Multi-Resoution Modeling of Infrared Satellite Data; Ph.D. Ohio State
  • -- Sierra Pugh; Estimating Seasonal Onsets and Peaks of Bronchiolitis with Spatially and Temporally Uncertain Data; Ph.D. Colorado State
  • -- Christian Davis; Bayesian Approaches to Spatial Data; MS BYU
  • -- Spencer Galbraith; Realignment of Areal Data using Spatial Point Processes; Walmart.
  • -- Kaitlin Gibson; Identifying Crash Risk Factors on an Interstate Network; Tax Hawk.
  • -- Dalton Bagley; Multi-resolution Basis functions for Areal Data; Health Catalyst.
  • -- Rachel Messick; Multivariate Spatial Mapping of Soil Water Holding Capacity with Spatially Varying Cross-correlations; Visible Equity.
  • -- Jacob Mortensen; Urban Heat Risk Mapping Using Multiple Point Patterns in Houston, Texas; Simon Fraser University (Statistics Ph.D. Student)
  • -- Cameron Faerber; Spatial Modelling of Highway Crash Risk in Minnesota; GroupSolver.
  • -- Sorah Kang; Spatio-Temporal Smoothing of Seasonal Bronchiolitis Patterns in the Contiguous United States; Adjunct Faculty, Northern Oklahoma College.
  • -- Prakash Adhikari; Risk Factors for Fatal Accidents; Modellers LLC.
  • -- Keturah Bartlett; Estimating Tolerance Thresholds to Characterize Urban Vulnerability to Heat; Merrick Bank.
  • -- Alexis Cottam; Understanding Storm-Related Trouble Spot Counts using Spatially-Dependent Negative Binomial Models; CSU (Statistics Ph.D. Student).