Current Areas of Focus

I study the impact of transportation and other city-level policies on climate change and the local environment. My work is rooted in environmental economics and urban planning, and I use tools from econometrics and statistics, computational geospatial analysis, qualitative methods, and formal game theory.

A global view of urban sprawl and travel
Urban form has enormous environmental and energy supply implications. My current research asks how sprawl varies around the world, and how that affects travel, energy demand and climate change. What are the implications for carbon emissions if Beijing, Bangalore and Baghdad sprawl like Tulsa or densify like Tokyo? This research builds on my recent work with Chris Barrington-Leigh analyzing a century of sprawl in the United States, and the implications of "peak sprawl" for carbon emissions.

Cities and climate change policy
I am interested in explaining the variations between cities in environmental policy. Why do some cities do more than others to reduce greenhouse gas emissions? To what extent do city climate plans and other plans have causal impacts and change outcomes, rather than simply codifying the policies a city would have followed anyway? What is the link between city climate policies and carbon trading programs? My recent work includes a review of California's climate policy efforts, and an analysis of how cap-and-trade affects city climate planning goals.

Transportation planning
My work on transportation policy bridges academic research with my previous professional experience as a transportation planner. What are the impacts of parking management, car-sharing and other demand management policies, and how can they contribute to climate change mitigation? My recent work has analyzed the potential impacts of autonomous vehicles on walking, and the effectiveness of driving restrictions in Mexico City and parking pricing programs in San Francisco.

Media Coverage

Some recent lectures