The Center for Urban & Regional Studies is pleased to announce that Dr. Clark Gray from the Department of Geography is the winner of the 2015-2016 China Urbanization Research Proposal Competition. Dr. Gray’s proposed research will build on several of his previous studies investigating the social consequences of environmental change in the developing world in order to examine rural and urban China’s vulnerability to flooding. As Dr. Gray wrote in his proposal, “the natural disaster that affects the most people globally is flooding, with deaths and damages concentrated in East and South Asia. China is particularly vulnerable and has been the site of ten of the ten most damaging floods globally since 1980 (as measured by estimates of the number of people affected).” His collaboration with Dr. Tamlin Pavelsky of the UNC Geology Department and Dr. Valerie Mueller of the International Food Policy Research Institute will aim to conduct a population-level longitudinal study to investigate the social impacts of flooding in rural and urban China. Continue reading
June 29, 2015
Efforts to improve conditions for walking and bicycling near schools can increase safety and travel by foot and bicycle. It turns out these initiatives can also help school districts save money, according to Noreen McDonald, CURS faculty fellow and associate professor in the Department of City and Regional Planning. In a recently published research brief “The Economic Benefits of Safe Routes to School,” McDonald explains that many school districts can save significant amounts of money by reducing the need for hazard busing — a practice where districts bus students living within walking distance of their schools because the students face hazardous walking and biking conditions.
Read more in the research brief about hazard busing and communities that can save money while providing safer routes for kids to walk and bike to school.
June 23, 2015
CURS Director Bill Rohe returned yesterday from a whirlwind trip to China during which he presented research in three cities (Beijing, Tianjin and Chongqing) and participated in a signing ceremony expressing the intent to establish a Consortium for Urban and Regional Transportation. The Consortium will bring researchers from Beijing Jiaotong University’s (BJTU) Department of Urban Planning, School of Architecture and Design, and Institute of Urban Planning & Design together with faculty and staff at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s (UNC-CH) Department of City and Regional Planning, Center for Urban and Regional Studies (CURS), and Program on Chinese Cities. Professor Rohe, director of CURS, was joined on the trip by Professor Roberto Quercia, chair of the UNC-CH Department of City and Regional Planning. Professor Yan Song, director of the Program on Chinese Cities, was also a signatory of the letter of intent.
June 2, 2015
A recent Harvard study examining the long-term impact of moving families in public housing to better neighborhoods with Housing Choice Vouchers (HCVs)—which subsidize households’ rent in private-market apartments—found that children who moved under this program had improved chances of achieving upward economic mobility. The research generated significant media coverage, including this interactive feature in the New York Times, in part because previous studies of this program—known as Moving to Opportunity—indicated that relocation with HCVs had not significantly improved the lives of recipients. Continue reading
June 2, 2015
Jonathan Broome Howes, director of the Center for Urban and Regional Studies from 1970 to 1992, passed away last weekend at the age of 78. He will be remembered as a vibrant, dedicated and compassionate leader and public servant.
In 1959, Jonathan, who was completing his master’s degree in City and Regional Planning at UNC-Chapel Hill, worked at the Center as a research assistant. After graduation, he left Chapel Hill to work at the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development but was recruited back to the University by F. Stuart Chapin, Jr., the outgoing director, to lead the Center into a new era of translating research into practice. Jonathan encouraged his staff to apply the Center’s research expertise to the problems facing urban America and to engage with local and state agencies. He led by example, serving as City Council member for the town of Chapel Hill for over a decade, and as a two-term mayor of Chapel Hill, all while continuing his leadership of the Center and teaching at the UNC Department of City and Regional Planning. Continue reading
A new study about the 1960 sit-in demonstrations finds that protest did indeed change the world. Find out more about this research in the CURS Spring 2015 newsletter. Also, a timely critique of the impact of AirBnB on cities and local economies, and a new report on housing choice vouchers. Click here to read more!
May 4, 2015
William (Bill) Rohe has been reappointed as director of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill’s Center for Urban and Regional Studies, one of the oldest university-based urban research centers in the country. Rohe is also the Cary C. Boshamer Distinguished Professor of City and Regional Planning at UNC-CH. Continue reading
With support from the Dean’s Office, College of Arts & Sciences and the Provost’s Office, the Program on Chinese Cities (PCC) is pleased to solicit applications for its China Urbanization Research Proposal Competition. The Program on Chinese Cities Research Proposal Competition is designed to encourage faculty members at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill to conduct research on Chinese cities. Continue reading
The Center for Urban & Regional Studies is pleased to announce that Dr. Laura Lopez-Sanders from the Department of Sociology is our Scholar-in-Residence for 2015-16. Dr. Lopez-Sanders will use this opportunity to develop a proposal for research on the unintended consequences of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (the ACA) on immigrant integration in new destinations. Continue reading
April 16, 2015
CURS faculty fellow and associate professor of city and regional planning Mai Thi Nguyen is the author of an opinion piece in the News and Observer today about regulation of short-term rental web companies like AirBnB.