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Dr. Hess’ research explores how transportation and access foster social and economic functions of cities. His work addresses interactions between transportation, land use and other public concerns; he explore metropolitan form and urban planning practice and policy, sometimes interactively and sometimes separately, but always as a means to improve city functions and urban life.

Research conducted by Dr. Hess and colleagues in the Baltic States focuses on two themes: (1) understanding how the legacy of town planning and the wide-ranging effects of various occupations affect local and national planning systems and planning practice, to enhance scholarship on market-led urban transformation amid the complexity of post-socialist urban space; and (2) understanding housing systems and historical and current population dynamics to explore the effects of inherited segmentation from Soviet times. His work has clarified ethnic stratification in neighborhood dynamics and housing access, and the findings lead to better understand of housing career evolution for members of minority/majority populations.

Dr. Hess’ scholarly contributions offer new pathways for understanding the complex socio-economic and ethnic landscape of cities, particularly: the long term impact of state controlled housing allocation; the need to view changing segregation as a long-term process; the concurrent analysis of preferences and actual segregation and the resulting evidence about inequalities in realizing housing ‘choice’; and the role that socio-economic segregation plays in spatial processes in post-socialist urban space by reducing ethnic mixing.

Among the awards recognizing the quality of Dr. Hess’ research are the Marie Skłodowska-Curie International Fellowship, Fulbright Scholar Award, National Endowment for the Humanities Fellowship, Chester Rapkin Award, Dwight D. Eisenhower Transportation Fellowship, UB Exceptional Scholar Award, and Best Published Paper Award (Region 2 University Transportation Research Center).

More information here.