Date of Award

Spring 2015

Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science in Geospatial Science



First Advisor

Dr. Michael J. Pretes

Second Advisor

Dr. Keith D. Malone

Third Advisor

Dr. Jonathan P. Fleming


Maritime trade and access to deep water territory are important when determining a country’s economic success. Today, as much as 75% percent of trade is done over water. This thesis examines issues in economic geography such as the landlocked curse, resource curse, maritime port dependency, import and export competition, and trade openness, and attempts to explain the importance of maritime exposure. This study explores the relationship between six major factors in maritime exposure and overall economic prosperity. Findings suggest a positive correlation between maritime exposure and Gross Domestic Product (purchasing power parity and per capita). Interestingly, findings also show a negative relationship between maritime exposure and the United Nations Human Development Index rank score.