GLOBAL FORUM RESEARCH NETWORK
Principal/Senior Research Associates
James Bohland – Socio-political Dimensions of Resilience
David Bieri – Financial Resilience
Dan Simundza - Financial Resilience
Dr. Paul L. Knox is University Distinguished Professor and Senior Fellow for International Advancement, reporting directly to the university President. Dr. Knox is currently serving as the Dean of the Honors College and will continue to support Global Forum in an advisory capacity. Between 1997 and 2006 Dr. Knox served as Dean of the College of Architecture and Urban Studies at Virginia Tech. Recent books include London: Architecture, Building and Social Change (Merrell, London, 2015), Atlas of Cities (New York: Princeton University Press, 2014), Palimpsests: Biographies of 50 City Districts (Birkhäuser Verlag, Basel, 2012), Urbanization (3rd ed., Prentice Hall, 2011), Cities and Design (Routledge, 2010), Small Town Sustainability (Birkhäuser Verlag, Basel, 2009), and Metroburbia, USA (Rutgers University Press, 2008).
Giselle Datz | Bio
Giselle Datz is an Associate Professor at Virginia Tech's School of Public and International Affairs. She specializes in the field of global political economy with research interests in sovereign debt restructuring processes, economic policy reform (particularly pension reforms), financial crises and financial development. Some of her research on Argentina's debt restructuring process, private pensions in Latin America, and the role of "complexity" in financial crises has been published in the Review of International Political Economy, New Political Economy, Public Administration Review, and Latin American Politics and Society, among other academic journals.
Dr. Datz’s research aligns with the Financial Resilience thematic area.
Douglas Lind | Bio
Dr. Lind is Professor of Philosophy and Department Chair at Virginia Tech. Douglas Lind is a Professor and Department Chair for Philosophy at Virginia Tech. Formally trained in both law and philosophy, Lind's research interests fall mainly in philosophy of law and jurisprudence. He has published on the nature of judicial practice, legal reasoning and interpretation, indigenous law, justice theory, and law and literature. Throughout, his work is highly influenced by classical pragmatist philosophy and the later philosophy of Wittgenstein. Currently he is developing a general pragmatist jurisprudence with emphasis on tort law and legal fictions.
Dr. Lind's research aligns with the Financial Resilience thematic area.
Michael Moehler | Bio
Michael Moehler is an Associate Professor in the Department of Philosophy at Virginia Tech and Director of its Program in Philosophy, Politics, and Economics (PPE). In addition, he is a Core Faculty Member of the ASPECT Program, which is an interdisciplinary doctoral program in the humanities and social sciences at Virginia Tech. Dr. Moehler received his PhD in Philosophy from the London School of Economics and Political Science (LSE). His main research interests lie in contractarian moral and political philosophy, in particular the integration of rational and evolutionary moral approaches, public reason, moral pluralism, political economy, the welfare state, and the topic of global justice.
Moehler's work aligns with the Financial Resilience thematic area.
George Morgan | Bio
Dr. Morgan is the SunTrust Professor of Finance in the Pamplin College of Business at Virginia Tech. Dr. Morgan’s research revolves around the decisions regulators should make when faced with issues related to disciplining banks. He also examines the ways bankers can hedge their interest-rate and foreign currency exchange rate risks. His research centers on the use and risks of futures trading and the management and regulation of commercial banking organizations and their regulatory capital positions. His work has appeared in many reputable journals like The Journal of Finance. Dr. Morgan’s research in CWT helped to bring advanced broadband communications capabilities to consumers and businesses, especially in rural areas.
Dr. Morgan's work aligns with the Financial Resilience thematic area.
Kwok Ping Tsang | Bio
Kwok Ping Tsang is an associate professor at the Department of Economics, Virginia Tech. His current research interests are international finance and housing economics, and a unifying theme of his research is the connection between asset prices and the macroeconomy. His recent projects include studies of mortgage lending behavior in the US, the dynamics of global financial and trade networks, the decomposition of exchange rate movements into expectations and risk, and theoretical modeling of heterogeneous investors in financial markets. He has also worked on yield curves, DSGE models and other topics.
He is active in writing for the general public. Since 2012 he contributes regularly to several media outlets in Hong Kong, commenting on both local and global economic issues.
Tsang is a member of the Economic Research Centre at Hong Kong Institute of Asia-Pacific Studies, a co-editor of Contemporary Economic Policy, and an associate editor of the Asia-Pacific Journal of Accounting & Economics.
Dr. Tsang’s work aligns with the Financial Resilience thematic area.
LaDale Winling | Bio
LaDale Winling is an Assistant Professor in the Department of History at Virginia Tech. He specializes in urban history with research interests in race, finance, and the built environment. His book on urban development and university campus planning in the United States, Building the Ivory Tower, will be published with the University of Pennsylvania Press. Mapping Inequality, his collaborative exploration of the Home Owners' Loan Corporation redlining maps, is available through the digital atlas American Panorama. Winling's work has also been published in the Journal of Urban History and the Journal of Planning History.
Dr. Winling's research aligns with the Financial Resilience thematic area.
Shannon Elizabeth Bell | Bio
Shannon Elizabeth Bell is Associate Professor of Sociology and an affiliated faculty member in the Women’s and Gender Studies Program and the Center for Peace Studies and Violence Prevention at Virginia Tech. Dr. Bell’s research spans a number of sub-disciplines, including environmental sociology, social movements, gender, and rural sociology. Her research is broadly focused on issues of environmental justice and injustice, and she has a particular interest in developing strategies for increasing the political participation and civic engagement of those most affected by industrial pollutants and environmental health hazards. Dr. Bell’s research in the coalfields of Appalachia using the participatory action research method of “Photovoice” to study the challenges local people face to speaking out against the negative consequences of coal extraction has earned her national-level recognition. In 2017 she was honored with the Excellence in Research Award from the Rural Sociological Society, and in 2013 she received the Environmental Sociology Practice and Outreach Award and the Robert Boguslaw Award for Technology and Humanism, both of which were awarded by the Environmental Sociology Section of the American Sociological Association. Dr. Bell is author of two award-winning books: Fighting King Coal: The Challenges to Micromobilization in Central Appalachia (MIT Press, 2016, winner of the Association of American Publishers Professional and Scholarly Excellence Award and a gold medal from the Nautilus Book Awards) and Our Roots Run Deep as Ironweed: Appalachian Women and the Fight for Environmental Justice (University of
Illinois Press, 2013, winner of the Association for Humanist Sociology Outstanding Book Award and a silver medal from the Nautilus Book Awards).
Bell's research aligns with the Socio-political Dimensions of Resilience thematic area.
C.L. Bohannon | Bio
Dr. C.L. Bohannon is an Assistant Professor and joined the faculty at Virginia Tech in 2014. He previously taught at Florida A&M University in the graduate landscape architecture program. His research focuses on the relationship between community engagement and design education, primarily through design for social and environmental justice. Through his research, Dr. Bohannon works in the landscape context of community history and identity, social/environmental (in)justice, and community learning. His research has led to contributions to the theorization and application of community engagement in design education. He teaches courses on community engaged design (CED); design research methods, contemporary research topics in landscape architecture, and seeing, understanding & representing landscapes. Dr. Bohannon was a recently named an Emerging Engagement Scholar by the Engagement Scholarship Consortium.
Dr. Bohannon's research aligns with the Socio-political Dimensions of Resilience thematic area.
Deborah Brosnan | Bio
Dr. Deborah Brosnan is an adjunct Professor of Biology at Virginia Tech, and affiliated faculty member of the Virginia Tech Global Change Center. Dr. Brosnan is a marine ecosystem scientist and disaster risk expert. She has 25 years of experience integrating science into critical actions across government, civil and private sectors. Her work lies at the intersection of cutting-edge science and decision-making involving environment, social and economic resilience, where the stakes and risks are high. She received her B.S. and M.S. in Galway Ireland, her Ph.D. in marine ecology from Oregon State University. She is President of the Brosnan Center and sits on several university and other Boards.
Margaret Cowell | Bio
Margaret Cowell, PhD is an Assistant Professor of Urban Affairs and Planning at Virginia Tech. She teaches courses on economic development, urban economy, and public policy. She was a member of the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation-funded research project, “Building Resilient Regions” and also part of a team of researchers assessing the potential of the homeland security economy for community economic development at the St. Elizabeths Hospital site in Southeast Washington, DC. Dr. Cowell’s research has been funded by the MacArthur Foundation, Kauffman Foundation, National Association of Counties, and the United States Economic Development Administration. She is the author of Dealing with Deindustrialization: Adaptive Resilience in American Midwestern Regions (Routledge 2014).
Dr. Cowell’s research aligns with the Socio-political Dimensions of Resilience thematic area.
Julia Gohlke | Bio
Dr. Julia M. Gohlke is an Assistant Professor in the Population Health Sciences Department at the Virginia-Maryland College of Veterinary Medicine. Dr. Gohlke’s research focuses on development of methods to assess the role of the environment in human health. Her research employs spatiotemporal analysis of health outcomes related to environmental exposures under a community engaged research framework. Her research team has characterized geographical patterns and time trends of heat waves, and have shown the South is experiencing more significant increases in heat waves than other parts of the United States. When applied to estimate associations between preterm birth and non-accidental mortality, they have shown a heat wave metric based on relative average temperatures is more predictive of adverse health outcomes than the current definition used by the National Weather Service to issue heat wave warnings. They have also shown racial and socioeconomic disparities in preterm birth may be modified by rurality in Alabama, suggesting heightened risk in urban areas.
Dr. Gohkle’s research aligns with the Socio-political Dimensions of Resilience thematic area.
Rebecca J. Hester | Bio
Rebecca J. Hester is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Science and Technology in Society. Her scholarship focuses on body politics, global health, immigration, and the cultural politics of health and medicine. Her recent research examines contemporary accounts of “biological danger” and the social, political, and scientific implications of preempting, preventing and eradicating such danger. Dr. Hester is a co-editor of “Translocalities/Translocalidades: Feminist Politics of Translation in the Latin/a Americas.” She teaches classes on the foundations of social medicine; issues in humanities, science, and technology; and monsters, zombies, and cyborgs.
Mark Orr | Bio
Dr. Mark Orr is a Research Associate Professor in the Social and Decision Analytics Laboratory at the Biocomplexity Institute of Virginia Tech. Originally trained as a cognitive psychologist at the University of Illinois at Chicago. He received augmentation to this training with postdoctoral fellowships in computational modeling (Carnegie Mellon), neuroscience (Albert Einstein College of Medicine), and epidemiology/complex systems (Columbia University). Over the past decade, he has become heavily involved in understanding dynamic processes and drivers of risky behavior and decision making, primarily in a public health context, at the scale of the individual and populations. He is now currently expanding these ideas into other contexts and for other applications (e.g., DoD, DoE, DHS). He teaches agent-based modeling approaches for social and political processes.
Dr. Orr’s research aligns with the Socio-political Dimensions of Resilience thematic area.
Thomas Skuzinski | Bio
Thomas Skuzinski, Ph.D., J.D., is an Assistant Professor of Urban Affairs and Planning at the School of Public and International Affairs. He holds graduate degrees in law and urban planning, and specializes in land use and housing policy at the local and metropolitan levels. His research focuses on how cognition and social norms mediate and moderate rules, working primarily within an institutional analysis and development framework. Currently, Thomas is continuing work on the relationship between deeply held values about solidarity and equality and the preferences and behaviors of local elected officials toward regional governance in land use and economic development. He terms this process the cultural cognition of governance, and has a forthcoming book (Spring 2017) from Routledge—The Risk of Regional Governance—describing this process and its manifestation in Detroit and Grand Rapids, Michigan. Additional projects include: development and testing of a framework for evaluating the equity and effectiveness of regional transportation systems as a function of formal and informal local autonomy; investigation, using Florida as a case study, of how the impact of state land use legislation on the behavior of municipal actors and developers is mediated by social norms; and exploration of whether the use of simple, browser-based decision-support tools can positively change land use planning processes, a collaborative effort pursued in partnership with the Town of Blacksburg, Virginia.
Skuzinski’s ongoing interest in the attitudes and behaviors of actors within complex institutional settings aligns with both the Socio-Political Dimensions of Resilience and Resilience Machine research themes.
Samarth Swarup | Bio
Dr. Samarth Swarup is a Research Assistant Professor in the Network Dynamics and Simulation Science Laboratory at the Biocomplexity Institute of Virginia Tech. He works on problems at the intersection of public health, urban analytics, network science, and artificial intelligence. He develops agent-based models known as synthetic information systems, which are large-scale, high fidelity, data-driven simulation models of human populations and infrastructures. These models are used in the study of topics including disease epidemiology, environmental effects on health, and disaster response. His work has won several awards, including first place in the 2016 NIEHS Climate Change and Environmental Exposures Challenge.
Dr. Swarup's research aligns with the Socio-political Dimensions of Resilience thematic area.
Yang Zhang | Bio
Yang Zhang is an Associate Professor of Urban Affairs and Planning at Virginia Tech. His research looks at environmental planning, climate change adaptation and sustainable development, especially in the area of disasters / hazards mitigation and recovery. Dr. Zhang’s projects have both domestic and international (China) focuses. He is committed to seeking innovative ideas that transcend political and cultural differences. His research is primarily quantitative and his method expertise includes Geographic Information System (GIS), and econometrics.
Dr. Zhang’s research aligns with the Socio- political Dimensions of Resilience thematic area.
Christopher Zobel | Bio
Christopher W. Zobel is the R.B. Pamplin Professor of Business Information Technology at Virginia Tech. His research focuses on using information technology to help solve problems that can benefit the common good and have a positive impact on society. Dr. Zobel's primary areas of interest include disaster and humanitarian operations management and much of his work is associated with the quantitative characterization of disaster resilience as an interdisciplinary concept. He teaches decision support system design and implementation, including courses in web-based systems and database development, within the Pamplin College of Business.
The aim of the Global Forum Research Network on Post-Industrial Resilience (PIR) is to bring together scholars with expertise or interest in post-industrial geographies to advance a comparative research agenda grounded in a neo-institutional theoretical framework. For more information and to see our recent work, click below:
PIR NETWORK: Coming soon
VISITING SCHOLAR PROGRAM
The Global Forum’s Visiting Scholar Program offers scholars and practitioners the opportunity to enhance the development of an international network of scholars that are participating in the conversation on resilience. The objective of the Visiting Scholar Program is to advance research by fostering interactions with the research associations and Forum Fellows, co-developing publications and research programs, establishing university partnerships, and offering public lectures.
Summer 2014 - Liesel Richie
Fall 2015 - Simin Davoudi
2017 - Jonathan Pugh
2017 - Julian Reid
Trevor Flanery | Graduate Student
Program of Study: Planning, Governance, and Globalization (PGG)
Trevor graduated in the Summer of 2016 from the Planning, Governance, and Globalization Program in the School of Public and International Affairs. His dissertation titled, “Planning Local and Regional Development: Exploring Network Signals, Sites, and Economic Opportunity” is an inquiry about local neighborhood centers as behavioral settings that are the network interfaces between regional, economic, and human development. His work uses network and simulation tools to research these meeting points of information, motivation, and environmental structures as complex adaptive systems at the functional heart of urban development and adaptation. His research interests are focused on economic & community development, complex adaptive systems, networks, and models & simulation science. Trevor holds a BA in Geography from UNC Chapel Hill, an MS in Geography and Ph.D. in Planning, Governance, and Globalization from Virginia Tech.
Priscila Izar | Ph.D. Candidate
Program of Study: PhD PGG, Urban & Environmental Design & Planning (UEDP)
Priscila Izar is a Ph.D. candidate in the School of Public and International Affairs and graduate research assistant at the Global Forum or Urban and Regional Resilience. Her work explores the connections between financialization and urban space production. Her dissertation examines the scope, limitations and meaning of financialized urban policy in contexts in which the size and character of financial markets are not clear. Priscila holds a master’s degree in International Development Policy from Duke University and a professional degree in Architecture and Urban Planning from Mackenzie University in Brazil. She has previously worked in the fields of housing and local economic development, including efforts to develop especially impoverished areas.
Rupinder Paul Khandpur | Graduate Student
Program of Study: Ph.D. in Computer Science
Rupinder Paul Khandpur is a Computer Science PhD student at the Discovery Analytics Center (https://dac.cs.vt.edu/), Virginia Tech. His research centers on applied data sciences with an emphasis on open information extraction, knowledge summarization and narrative generation from structured (newspapers) & unstructured (Twitter) texts. He is part of the team working on EMBERS, which is an ongoing IARPA OSI (Open Source Indicators) project aimed at forecasting significant societal events (disease outbreaks, civil unrest, elections) from open source datasets. He received his Masters in Computational Biology from Carnegie Mellon University.
Teni Ladipo | Graduate Student
Program of Study: Ph.D., Environmental Design and Planning
Teni graduated in May 2016 with a Ph.D. in Environmental Design and Planning in the Department of Building Construction in the Myers- Lawson School of Construction. Teni was inducted into the 2016 Edward A. Bouchet Honor Society at Virginia Tech as an Outstanding Doctoral Degree Student. Her teaching and research activities centered on building physics, natural disaster resilience, building performance modeling, and high-performance building. Teni holds both an M.Sc. degree in Building/Construction Science and Management and a B.Sc. in Housing from Virginia Tech.
Michal Linder-Zarankin | Graduate Student
Program of Study: Center for Public Administration and Policy, School of Public and International Affairs
Michal Linder Zarankin is a Ph.D Candidate in the Center for Public Administration and Policy, School of Public and International Affairs, at Virginia Tech and a Graduate Assistant at the Global Forum on Urban and Regional Resilience. Her teaching and research interests address inter/intra-organizational behavior before, during and after crises and disasters, with an emphasis on the range of individual, group and community organizations' responses to large-scale emergencies. Her dissertation, “Lost in the Hazard Cycle: Public Libraries and Disaster Response within the Current Emergency Management Paradigm," is focused on the role public libraries play in disaster relief and recovery. Michal holds a Bachelor of Laws from the University of Sussex, UK, and an MPA from the University of Missouri, Columbia.
Trey McMillon | Graduate Student
Program of Study: Architechture
Trey is a Masters student in the School of Architecture and Design. Trey has held both professional appointments and internships focused on marketing, graphic design, and interior design for public and private entities. Trey holds a BS in Architecture from the Georgia Institute of Technology.
Omchand Mahdu | Graduate Student
Program of Study: Planning, Governance, and Globalization (PGG)
Omchand is a Ph.D. student in the School of Public and International Affairs. His research interest is the impact of climate change mitigation on rural and agricultural progress in developing countries. His professional work experience includes the oversight of financial and operations management of large USAID projects in Iraq and Afghanistan in addition to short term assignments in Yemen and Tunisia. Omchand holds a Bachelor of Social Science degree in Accountancy from the University of Guyana, an MS in Industrial Technology, an MBA in Finance from Morehead State University, and an MS in Agricultural and Applied Economics from Virginia Tech.
Rongrong "Emma" Wei | Graduate Student
Program of Study: Ph.D. in Planning, Governance, and Globalization (PGG)
Rongrong is a PhD student in the School of Public and International Affairs at Virginia Tech. Her work centers on theorizing and measuring municipal fiscal resilience, with a particular focus on decentralized fiscal choice. Rongrong's research interests are in the areas of fiscal federalism, intergovernmental transfers, municipal fiscal architecture, public choice theory, and public economics. Rongrong holds a BA in Tourism Management and Planning from Shanghai Normal University, and a dual Master’s degree in Public Administration and Policy, and Urban and Regional Planning from Virginia Tech.
Vera Smirnova | Graduate Student
Program of Study: Ph.D. in Planning, Governance, and Globalization (PGG); School of Public and International Affairs
Vera Smirnova – Vera Smirnova joined the Department for Spatial Development and Regional Studies at the Higher School of Economics, Russia, as a postdoctoral fellow in 2018, where she is collaborating with the School of Geography at Cardiff University, UK. Vera received her PhD in Planning Governance and Globalization program from Virginia Tech where she worked as a graduate assistant at GFURR. She also holds a MArch degree from Kansas State University where she was a Fulbright Graduate Scholar.
Vera’s research interests combine political and historical geography and urban political economy of capitalist land struggles. Her work explores practices of land enclosure in Russia with a particular interest in policies, popular discourses, and day-to-day realities of large scale land acquisitions in late imperial and post-socialist periods. She conducted extensive archival research to examine this issue.
Sara Jamal Eddin | Graduate Student
Program of Study: Masters of Architecture, School of Architecture + Design
Sara Jamal Eddin is a Syrian Masters student at Virginia Tech. She graduated from University of Aleppo, where she studied architectural engineering and earned her bachelor degree. Her graduation project "Environmental Research Center" studies the using of renewable energy technologies that have a lower environmental impact than conventional energy technologies. The project depends on sun and wind energy as the only source of producing electricity, was suggested to structure on the third expansion of Aleppo University area and ranked among the best projects carried out in her class.
Sara plays the Piano; she graduated from the Arabic Institute for music, Syria in 2006. Her goals include specializing in rehabilitation of historic buildings and sites as well as contributing as an essential member in the reconstructing process in Syria.
Sara worked on special projects with the Global Forum and will be completing her Master’s Program in the College of Architecture.
Emma Buchanan | Graduate Student
Program of Study: Urban Affairs
Emma worked as an undergraduate at the Global Forum and completed her Master's of Urban and Regional Planning Program. She also completed the Local Government Management and Public and Nonprofit Financial Management Graduate Certificate Programs. Emma is interested in rural economic development and resiliency with a focus on asset-based community Development.
Emma is currently employed as the Town Planner for the town of Culpepper, Virginia.
Ben Taylor | Graduate Student
Program of Study: Finance
Ben Taylor graduated from The College of Wooster in Wooster, OH, in spring 2016 with a double major in political science and English as well as a minor in philosophy. While at Wooster, he completed a senior thesis examining the role that popular media play in generating democratic “consent,” analyzing how Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy both reflected anxieties regarding terrorism and provided support for the ongoing efforts on behalf of the U.S. surveillance state. Ben completed the political science M.A. program at Virginia Tech in May of 2018.
Ben is currently attending John Hopkins University and pursuing his PhD in political science with a major subfield in political theory.