Research Partners & Advisors
Research Partners & AdvisorsGeorgia Smart projects must include a research component as part of the community’s project plan. This research component should be designed in conjunction with a Georgia Tech researcher who will lead the research effort and who may also be used for general assistance during the proposal and project execution phases. The research component is open-ended, but it must be technology-focused and it must directly advance the community’s project goals, or otherwise generally align with the community’s overall needs, goals, and vision.
Faculty research partners will be available during the workshop on April 9, but before that, communities can learn about potential research collaborators and get ideas for their research component. Communities are encouraged to reach out and connect with these Georgia Tech researchers for more information about their research and availability for consultation or teaming.
Heyward Adams is the Division Chief for the Sensor Intelligence & Visualization Group at the Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI). Mr. Adams' research areas include the Internet of Things, Natural Language Processing, Machine Vision, and Real Time Analytics. He was involved with GTRI researchers in the development of a framework for standardizing communications for the Internet of Things and assited with the development of middleware software to demonstrate how these concepts allow for the seamless integration and interoperability between disperate technology ecosystems.
Omar Isaac Asensio, Ph.D.
Dr. Omar Issac Asensio is Assistant Professor in the School of Public Policy. His research focuses on big data and public policy. He conducts field experiments and uses evidence from big data to make causal inferences about incentives and behavior in areas such as energy, transportation and urban sustainability. His research has been published in general interest journals such as Nature Energy and PNAS. He is winner of the 2015 ONE-NBS Research Impact on Practice Award by the Academy of Management ONE Division. At Georgia Tech, he is also affiliated with the Institute for Data Engineering and Science (IDEaS), the Strategic Energy Institute, and the Climate and Energy Policy Laboratory (CEPL).
Baabak Ashuri, Ph.D.
Dr. Baabak Ashuri is Associate Professor in the School of Civil and Environmental Engineering and the School of Building Construction as well as the Director of the Construction Research Center. His research focuses on Economic Decision Analysis of Resilient and Sustainable Infrastructure Systems. This multidisciplinary field lies at the intersection of Project Management, Asset Management, and Quantitative and Computational Finance. His work has significant implications for improving long-term planning and integrated decision-making processes for buildings and infrastructure assets, as well as advancing economic/financial valuation methods for investments in major capital projects while preserving environmental and social conditions to foster resilient and sustainable development.
Doug Bodner, Ph.D., P.E.
Dr. Doug Bodner, P.E. is an instructor in the Stewart School of Industrial & Systems Engineering and principal research engineer with the Tennenbaum Institute, where he leads a research program focusing on computational analysis and decision support for design, operation and transformation of systems and enterprises. This work combines systems engineering, operations research and interactive computing to seek novel solutions to large-scale problems such as cost-performance trade-offs in complex system design and development, efficient logistics for installation of wind energy farms, and counter-measures for mitigating adverse effects from counterfeit parts in supply chains.
Marilyn Brown, Ph.D.
Dr. Marilyn Brown is a professor in the School of Public Policy where her research focuses on the design and impact of policies aimed at accelerating the development and deployment of sustainable energy technologies. Dr. Brown co-founded the Southeast Energy Efficiency Alliance and chaired its Board of Directors for several years. She has served on the boards of directors of the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy and the Alliance to Save Energy, and was a commissioner with the Bipartisan Policy Center. She has served on 8 National Academies committees and currently serves on the editorial boards of three journals. She is serving her second term as a Presidential appointee to the Board of Directors of the Tennessee Valley Authority, the nation’s largest public power provider, and she serves on DOE’s Electricity Advisory Committee.
Jennifer Clark, Ph.D.
Dr. Jennifer Clark is Associate Professor in the School of Public Policy where she is Director of the Center for Urban Innovation and Associate Director for Smart Cities and Inclusive Innovation. Dr. Clark teaches courses on urban and regional economic development theory, analysis, and practice, as well as research design and methods. She specializes in the theory and analysis of the spatial organization of economic activity and regional economic development policy. Dr. Clark’s current research project includes a new book: Making Smart Cities: Innovation and the Production of New Urban Knowledge (Columbia University Press).
Russell Clark, Ph.D.
Dr. Russell Clark is a senior research scientist in the School of Public Policy where his research focuses on mobile development, networking, and the Internet of Things. Dr. Clark is the co-director of the Georgia Tech Research Network Operations Center (GT-RNOC) and principal leader of the Convergence Innovation Competition. He has played a leadership role in the NSF GENI project, leading both the GT campus trials effort as well as the GENI@SoX regional deployment and the Software Defined Exchange (SDX). Dr. Clark is active in the startup community, including roles with the National Science Foundation Innovation Corps program and as a principle with Empire Technologies during its acquisition by Concord Communications.
Dr. Kim Cobb is Georgia Power Chair and ADVANCE Professor in the School of Earth and Atmospheric Science. Her research areas include dynamics of weather and climate, geochemistry in aquatic systems, coastal-zone and marine systems, and paleoclimate. She holds a Ph.D. in Oceanography from UC San Diego, and a B.S. in Geology and Biology from Yale.
Chris Cordell, Ph.D.
Dr. Chris Cordell is a research engineer in the Physics Modeling Group at the Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI). Dr. Cordell's research areas include natural system modeling and policy centric simulations. Dr. Cordell was involved with GTRI researchers in the development of an agent-based, policy-centric simulation framework to help study how the design of transportation networks, the behavior of agents, natural and man-made disasters, and control policies impact the performance of transportation systems. The framework allows analysts and city planners to assess "what-if" scenarios as part of their planning exercises.
Emanuele Di Lorenzo, Ph.D.
Dr. Emanuele Di Lorenzo is Director of the Program in Ocean Science & Engineering and Professor of Ocean & Climate Dynamics in the School of Earth & Atmospheric Sciences. His research interests include climate, ecosystem, and ocean dynamics, modeling and prediction. He is a member of the US CLIVAR Science Steering Committee and Chairman of the Physical Oceanography and Climate Committee.
Carl DiSalvo, Ph.D.
Dr. Carl DiSalvo is an Associate Professor in the Digital Media Program in the School of Literature, Media, and Communication. Dr. DiSalvo directs the Public Design Workshop: a design research studio that explores socially-engaged design and civic media, is co-director of the Digital Interdisciplinary Liberal Arts Center and its Digital Civics initiative, and leads the Serve-Learn-Sustain Fellows program. Current research domains include civics, smart cities, the internet of things, food systems, and environmental monitoring. Across these domains, Dr. DiSalvo is interested in how practices of participatory and public design work to articulate issues and provide resources for new forms of collective action. He is currently involved in a project with the City of Atlanta to construct a robust archive of environmental data, from multiple sources using environmental sensor technologies.
Ellen Dunham-Jones is a Professor in the School of Architecture and Director of the Master of Science in Urban Design degree. She is an authority on sustainable suburban redevelopment and a leading urbanist. Dunham-Jones serves on several national boards and committees, is former Chair of the Board of the Congress for the New Urbanism, lectures widely and conducts community workshops. In both her teaching and research she focuses on helping communities address 21st century challenges including autonomous vehicles and coping with climate change and suburban blight.
Subhro Guhathakurta, Ph.D.
Dr. Subhro Guhathakurta is the Director for the Center for Spatial Planning Analytics and Visualization and a professor in the School of City and Regional Planning in the College of Design. Dr. Guhathakurta was previously associate director of the School of Geographical Sciences and Urban Planning at Arizona State University (ASU) and among the founding faculty members of ASU’s School of Sustainability. Dr. Guhathakurta’s research focuses on computational infrastructure for assessing how decisions made about urban growth and change by urban actors (households, firms, civic leaders, etc.) relate to sustainability outcomes. He has developed metrics and benchmarks for assessing sustainability outcomes as well as having an interest in making communication in the sustainability field intuitive and visualization techniques relevant to non-experts.
Angshuman Guin, Ph.D.
Dr. Angshuman Guin is a Senior Research Engineer in the School of Civil and Environmental Engineering. He is a transportation systems engineer with 12 years’ experience in freeway operations, intelligent systems, transportation safety, and traffic simulation and data management. Dr. Guin’s current research is focused on SmartCity mobility, connected-and-autonomous-vehicles, freeway operations, ramp metering, and traffic simulations and is working projects for the National Science Foundation, Federal Highway Administration, GDOT, and GRTA.
Jennifer Hirsch, Ph.D.
Dr. Jennifer Hirsch is an Adjunct Associate Professor in the School of City & Regional Planning and is the Director for the Center for Serve-Learn-Sustainan. Dr. Hirsch is an applied cultural anthropologist specializing in community sustainability, cultural diversity, experiential education, and network building. She is recognized nationally for fostering grassroots participation in sustainability, climate, and energy action planning and implementation, using a unique combination of methodologies from anthropology, popular education, asset-based community development, participatory facilitation, and museum education. Before joining Georgia Tech, she worked as an independent consultant, focusing on campus sustainability and partnering with nonprofit organizations on community sustainability projects.
Michael Hunter, Ph.D.
Dr. Michael Hunter is an Associate Professor at the School of Civil and Environmental Engineering. His primary teaching and research interests are in transportation operations and design, specializing in adaptive signal control, traffic simulation, freeway geometric design, and arterial corridor operations. Before academia, Dr. Hunter worked as a transportation engineer at the Sear-Brown Group in Rochester, NY and has conducted numerous traffic impact studies, signal timing projects, freeway operation evaluations, and toll plaza analyses.
Dr. Roger Jiao is an associate professor in the Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering. His research interests focus on Computer-Aided Engineering and Design and Manufacturing; Enterprise and industrial systems engineering, information engineering for complex engineered systems, production and operations management, affective design, decision-based design, and human-machine interfaces. He holds a Ph.D. in Industrial Engineering from Hong Kong University of Science and Technology, and an M.S. and B.S. from Tianjin University, China.
Dr. Amit Kumar is a research scientist at the Center for Quality Growth & Regional Development in the College of Architecture. His research focuses on Transportation Planning and Transportation Systems Analysis including traffic assignment techniques especially for the static demand case, day-to-day dynamical model for traffic disequilibrium, concept of entropy and its application in transportation planning, discrete choice models, network optimization techniques, system-of-systems based approach for modeling the infrastructure interdependencies. Before joining Georgia Tech he worked as the research Associate in Discovery Park at Purdue University. He holds a Ph.D. in Transportation and Infrastructure Systems from Purdue University in 2014 and a master’s degree in Transportation Systems Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology Bombay, India. He received his Bachelor’s degree in civil engineering from MIT Muzaffarpur, India.
Dr. Thomas Lodato is a research scientist in the Center for Urban Innovation in the Institute for People and Technology. His research focuses on workplace transformation in the modern age including the shared workspace industry, the gig economy, and remote working. He also focuses on Smart Cities research in relation to data digitization, maintenance, and scaling, with an interest in legacy data sets. He holds a Ph.D. and M.S. in Digital Media from Georgia Tech, and a B.S. in Mathematics from Davidson College.
Christopher Le Dantec, Ph.D.
Dr. Christopher Le Dantec is an Associate Professor in the Digital Media Program in the School of Literature, Media, and Communication. His research is focused on the area of digital civics emerging from the intersection of participatory design, digital democracy, and smart cities. Dr. Le Dantec co-created the Cycle Atlanta smartphone app for recording bicycle trips by Atlanta cyclists (http://cycleatlanta.org). The GPS data collected will assist city planners in making data driven planning decisions relating to new bike lanes, cycle tracks, trails, and other facilities.
Jung-Ho Lewe, Ph.D.
Dr. Jung-Ho Lewe is a Research Engineer in the Aerospace Systems Design Laboratory in the School of Aerospace Engineering. His research includes agent-based modeling & simulation, transporation demand, system dynamics, stochastic optimization, air transport network modeling, personal air vehicles, and systems-of-systems engineering.
Mackenzie Madden is the Associate Director of Communications and Planning in the Ivan Allen College of Liberal Arts. She is also the Associate Director of the Westside Communities Alliance. Her focus is in public policy, public health, event planning and communications. She holds an M.S. in City and Regional Planning from Georgia Tech and a B.A. in Advertising from UGA.
Kamran Paynabar, Ph.D.
Dr. Kamran Paynabar is an assistant professor in the Stewart School of Industrial & Systems Engineering. Dr. Paynabar’s research interests comprise both applied and theoretical aspects of data mining and statistical modeling integrated with engineering knowledge. His current research focuses on the analysis of high-dimensional complex data including multi-stream signals, images, videos, point-clouds and network data, for system modeling, monitoring, diagnostics and prognostics.
Dr. Arthi Rao is a research scientist at the Center for Quality Growth & Regional Development in the College of Design. Dr. Rao’s research interests focus on social/spatial analytics, equity and access. She uses methods including spatial clustering, data mining/classification techniques and hierarchical modeling in her research. She has integrated these methods to create decision-support tools for academic and industrial applications. Dr. Rao regularly collaborates with researchers at The Morehouse School of Medicine, Georgia Tech and the American Planning Association as a subject matter expert on healthy communities’ research and geospatial methods. She has published in journals on the topics of Health Impact Assessment (HIA), sustainability, walkability analysis, regional planning, and therapeutic landscapes. She has an interdisciplinary doctorate in Urban Planning, Epidemiology, and Geographic Information Systems from Georgia Tech/Emory.
Ted Russell, Ph.D.
Dr. Armistead (Ted) Russell is the Howard T. Tellepsen Chair and Regents Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering. Dr. Russell’s research is aimed at better understanding the dynamics of air pollutants at urban and regional scales and assessing their impacts on health and the environment to develop approaches to design strategies to effectively improve air quality. He currently co-directs the Southeastern Center for Air Pollution and Epidemiology and the NSF Sustainability Research Network “Environmentally Sustainable, Healthy and Livable Cities” project.
Alex Samoylov, Ph. D.
Dr. Alex Samoylov is a senior research scientist at the Georgia Tech Research Institute (GTRI). Dr. Samoylov's research areas include Intelligent Transportation Systems, Traffic Modeling, and Transportation Safety and Emissions. He is currently researching improved modeling for transportation systems and traffic analysis.
Jon Sanford is a Professor in the School of Industrial Design and director of the Center for Assistive Technology and Environmental Access. Mr. Sanford is internationally-recognized for his expertise in universal design, accessible design, and design for aging, and is the director of the Rehabilitation Engineering Research Center on Technologies for Successful Aging with Disability, supported by DHHS.
Dennis Shelden, Ph.D.
Dr. Dennis Shelden is an associate professor and Director of the Digital Building Laboratory in the School of Architecture. Dennis is an expert in applications of digital technology to building design, construction and operations, with experience spanning across research, technology development and professional practice including multiple architecture, building engineering and computing disciplines. He led the development of architect Frank Gehry’s digital practice as Director of R&D and Director of Computing from 1997-2002. In 2002, he co-founded Gehry Technologies where he served as Chief Technology Officer, launched the development of several commercial software products, and was project executive on several of the world’s most recognizable and advanced building projects.
Dr. Yuanzhi Tang is Assistant Professor in the School of Earth and Atmospheric Science. Her research interests address the complex interworking between human activities and the natural environment by exploring the chemical reactions occurring at the microbe-mineral-water interface from molecule to macroscopic scale. Her work investigates the biogeochemical cycling of important nutrients in complex environmental settings. She holds a Ph.D. and M.S. in Geosciences from Stony Brook University and a B.S. in Geology and B.Ec. in Economics from Peking University, China.
John Taylor, Ph.D.
Dr. John Taylor is the Frederick Law Olmsted Professor in the School of Civil and Environmental Engineering. Dr. Taylor studies the dynamics where human and engineered networks meet encouraging engineered infrastructure to be resiliant and serve society’s needs while creating more livable and healthy communities. Dr. Taylor developed a virtual reality system integrating spatial and temporal data collected from real and simulated sources into a system for planners and analysts to perform "what if" scenarios on realistically complex data sets.
Dr. Iris Tien is Assistant Professor in the School of Civil and Environmental Engineering. She has a unique interdisciplinary background that encompasses traditional topics of civil engineering, sensing and data analytics, signal processing, machine learning, probabilistic risk assessment, stochastic processes, and decision making under uncertainty. Dr. Tien has conducted research on wireless sensor networks in the monitoring of structures under seismic hazard as well as in gait analysis for the diagnosis of Parkinson’s disease. She holds a Ph.D. in Civil Systems Engineering and an M.S. and B.S. in Civil and Environmental Engineering from UC Berkeley.
Beril Toktay, Ph.D.
Dr. Beril Toktay is Professor of Operations Management, Brady Family Chairholder and ADVANCE Professor in the Scheller College of Business. Her primary research areas are sustainable operations and supply chain management and currently teaches Business Strategies for Sustainability in MBA and Executive Education programs. Dr. Toktay is the founding Faculty Director of the Ray C. Anderson Center for Sustainable Business and the co-architect and Executive Co-Director of Georgia Tech's Serve.Learn.Sustain Quality Enhancement Plan.
Kari Watkins, Ph.D.
Dr. Kari Watkins, P.E., is the Frederick Law Olmsted Associate Professor in the School of Civil and Environmental Engineering. Dr. Watkins’ teaching and research interests revolve around multi-modal transportation planning and the use of technology in transportation, especially as related to transit planning and operations and improved traveler information. Dr. Watkins co-created the Cycle Atlanta smartphone app for recording bicycle trips by Atlanta cyclists (http://cycleatlanta.org) and while at the University of Washington, co-created the OneBusAway program (http://onebusaway.org) to provide real-time next bus countdown information and other transit information tools for transit riders in the greater Seattle-Tacoma.
Yao Xie, Ph.D.
Dr. Yao Xie is an assistant professor in the School of Industrial and Systems Engineering where her research focuses on signal processing, statistical methods, big data analysis, and machine learning. In 2017, Dr. Yao used machine learning tools to mine unstructured Atlanta police report data to uncover hidden and complex correlations between crime incidences leading police to become more effective while encouraging better outcomes in the community.
Shannon Yee, Ph.D.
Dr. Shannon Yee is an Assistant Professor in the G.W. Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering. Dr. Yee’s research focuses on translating new fundamental scientific discoveries into applied energy conversion technologies. By understanding how heat and energy flow through materials, energy conversion mechanisms and processes can be integrated into functional devices. The ultimate goal of his research is to take fundamental scientific principles, apply them to interesting materials, leverage unique manufacturing strengths, and produce low-cost, scalable, energy conversion technologies.He was named the first fellow to the U.S. Dept. of Energy’s Advanced Research Project Agency – Energy (ARPA-E), in 2010 and was awarded the prestigious Hertz Fellowship in 2008 to support his graduate studies and research in energy.
Ellen Zegura, Ph.D.
Dr. Ellen Zegura is the Fleming Endowed Chair in the School of Computer Science where her work focuses on computer networking and computing for social good. In 2008, she helped create the Computing for Good initiative in the College of Computing, a project-based teaching and research activity that focuses on the use of computing to solve pressing societal problems. She runs a summer internship program called Civic Data Science and is the faculty co-director of the Center for Serve Learn Sustain, a campus-wide initiative to bring together community engagement and sustainability efforts. She is a Fellow of the IEEE, a Fellow of the ACM, and an elected member of the Computing Research Association Board (CRA).