Zhong-Ren Peng

Zhong-Ren Peng

Department of Urban and Regional Planning
Professor/Director International Center for Adaptation Planning and Design (iAdapt)
352-294-1491
ARCH 462

Areas of Focus:
Sustainability (Built Environment Resilience, Smart Buildings/Cities, Sustainable Technology)
Conducting research in sustainable transportation systems such as public transportation systems, shared mobility and environment impacts of transportation networks; conducting research in adaptation planning for climate change like sea level rise and extreme weather.

Education Ph.D., Urban Studies, Portland State University, Portland, Oregon, 1994 M.S., Economics, Portland State University, Portland, Oregon, 1994 M.S., Geography, Graduate School of University of Science and Technology of China, Beijing, People’s Republic of China, 1986 B.S., Geography, Central China Normal University, Wuhan, People’s Republic of China, 1983

Areas of Expertise

  • Geospatial Information Systems and Analysis
  • Information Technology for Planning
  • International Planning
  • Landscape Planning Using GIS
  • Transportation

Teaching URP 6276: Internet Geographic Information Systems URP 6821: Transportation and Land Use Modeling URP 6905: Planning for Climate Change URP 6905: Urban Planning and Design Issues in China Research Interests Transportation and land use planning, modeling and policy Planning for climate change Information technology for planning International/China planning

Thomas Hawkins

Thomas Hawkins

Department of Urban and Regional Planning
Program Director, Master of Urban and Regional Planning online; Instructional Assistant Professor, URP
352-294-1483
ARCH 431B

Juris Doctor, Emory University School of Law

Areas of Focus:
Sustainability 
Implementing state and local policies regarding sustainability requires either spending or regulation. I study land use regulations, regulatory powers, and regulatory processes.

Bio:
Thomas Hawkins is an instructional assistant professor in the Department of Urban and Regional Planning and is program director of the university’s online Master of Urban and Regional Planning degree program. Thomas’s interests include planning and land development regulation under Florida law and the relationship between land development regulation and the built environment.

Thomas teaches land use law, planning administration and ethics, development review, and urban planning project for the department. Thomas has also taught land use law for the Levin College of Law and for Florida State University.

Prior to joining the department, Thomas was policy and planning director of 1000 Friends of Florida—the state’s leading advocate for planning and growth management in the public interest—where he addressed land use and transportation policy. Thomas has also served two terms as a Gainesville city commissioner. He has a law degree from the Emory University School of Law, has a Master of Science in Real Estate from the Hough Graduate School of Business at the University of Florida, is a member of the American Institute of Certified Planners, and is a member of the Florida Bar.

Crystal Goodison

Crystal Goodison

Department of Urban and Regional Planning
Associate Director + Associate Scholar, GeoPlan Center
352-392-2351
ARCH 131

Crystal Goodison is an Associate Scholar and Associate Director of the GeoPlan Center, a research and teaching center specializing in geospatial systems and technologies. Crystal’s responsibilities include a mix of administrative, research, and teaching duties. On the administrative side, she assists the Center director with staff management, fiscal oversight, and strategic planning. She also manages the online certificate program in Geographic Information Systems (GIS) for Urban and Regional Planners, an off-book certificate which offers asynchronous GIS training in close coordination with the Online Masters in Urban and Regional Planning.

On the research side, Crystal leads geospatial projects which provide mapping data, tools, and technical training to the State, regional, and local governments to assist with sea level rise and coastal resiliency planning efforts. Her work involves understanding the data needs of transportation planners and urban planners and then building mapping tools to facilitate data delivery, analysis, and visualization. She enjoys developing and offering technical training to planning professionals around the state to build local capacity and empowerment.  

Crystal teaches DCP1010 Geodesign Colloquium, where she introduces students to the field of geodesign and its capabilities for building a more sustainable future.  This course is part of the Geodesign Specialization within the Bachelors of Sustainability and the Built Environment and Crystal serves on the Geodesign advisory committee.  Crystal also does content development for multiple classes in the online GIS Certificate.

Crystal has a BA in Geography and MA in Urban and Regional Planning, both from the University of Florida.

Ilir Bejleri

Ilir Bejleri

Department of Urban and Regional Planning
Associate Professor
(352) 294-1489
ARCH 454

Ph.D.,Architecture and Design, Polytechnic University, Tirana, Albania, 1994
B.A., Architecture, University of Tirana, Tirana, Albania, 1987

Areas of Experitise
  • Geospatial Information Systems and Analysis
  • Urban Design
Research Interests
  • Urban Design
  • 3D Visual Urban Simulation
  • Planning & Geographic Information Systems (GIS)

Abhinav Alakshendra

Abhinav Alakshendra

Department of Urban and Regional Planning
Assistant Professor and Director, Center for International Design and Planning
(352) 294-1488
ARCH 448

Ph.D., Economics, Kansas State University, Manhattan, Kansas, 2012
M.A., Economics, Gokhale Institute of Politics and Economics, Pune, India, 2005

Areas of Focus:
Sustainability 

Bio:
Dr. Alakshendra’s research interests are mainly focused around the areas of urbanization, international development, and applied microeconomics in Southeast Asia. He is a trained Development Economist who uses cutting edge empirical research methods to understand complex socioeconomic problems. He is a recipient of many prestigious research grants including UKAID, Land and Housing Institute, Korea, and Florida Department of Transportation.

Kristin Larsen

Kristin Larsen

Department of Urban and Regional Planning
Professor
352-294-1482
ARCH 464

Ph.D., Cornell University 2001
Master of Arts in Urban and Regional Planning, University of Florida, 1990
Bachelor of Science in Business Administration, University of Florida 1986

Areas of Focus:
Sustainability 
(Sustainable Architecture and Design)
I examine sustainable architecture and design and related policy making through the lens of planning history. A key area of my research focuses on members of the Regional Planning Association of America, prominent designers, urbanists, human ecologists, economists, and developers active from the 1920s through the 1950s whose work in regionalism, town building, design, & housing policy established the foundations of today’s sustainability and resilience initiatives. In addition, my research focuses on community engagement to enhance resilience in the face of neighborhood change within marginalized communities.

Bio:
Kristin Larsen, AICP, Ph.D. (Cornell), MAURP (Florida), BSBA (Florida) is Professor and Director of the School of Landscape Architecture and Planning.  Among the projects she focused on when she worked as a land use and housing planner for the City of Orlando during the 1990s was a neighborhood revitalization project within the historic African American community of Parramore.  This professional planning experience inspired her to earn her doctoral degree focused on city and regional planning, planning history, cultural geography, and historic preservation.  At UF she has developed new courses in housing policy, historic preservation, and interdisciplinary studies in planning and landscape architecture.  

In addition to her responsibilities as a professor, Dr. Larsen has served in various leadership positions in the college for the past 10 years including directing the urban and regional planning graduate online degree program, chairing the Department of Urban and Regional Planning (URP), and directing the School of Landscape Architecture and Planning.  Notably, she spearheaded development of the nation’s first fully online graduate degree in urban and regional planning and shepherded the department through two accreditation reviews, both securing the maximum 7-year period with the most recent review accrediting the online delivery of the URP graduate degree.  

Dr. Larsen’s expertise in housing policy, neighborhood planning, community engagement, social justice, and planning history has resulted in numerous publications including her biography of noted community architect Clarence S. Stein.  Her peer reviewed research has also appeared in Housing Policy Debate, Journal of Planning History, Housing Studies, Planning Perspectives, and Urban Studies.   She has secured over $1 million in internal and external grants awarded as either Principal or Co-Principal Investigator, including the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Urban Scholars Fellowship and a State of Florida Division of Historical Resources Grant.  Her examination of the intellectual history of the Regional Planning Association of America continues with her upcoming biography of landscape architect and housing advocate Henry Wright.

Kathryn Frank

Kathryn Frank

Department of Urban and Regional Planning
Associate Professor and Acting Director of the School of Landscape Architecture and Planning
352-294-1485
ARCH 431A

Ph.D., Georgia Tech
City and Regional Planning, Georgia Tech

Areas of Focus:
Sustainability (Built Environment Resilience)
The core of my research has concerned environmental issues, however I take an integrated, interdisciplinary approach through the planning discipline, working in urban and rural settings. My sustainability work incorporates environmental, social and cultural, and governance aspects, especially community engagement, to create “sustainability science” towards understanding a more sustainable path forward. I also take an “action research” approach in which I create and test new sustainability methods in order to advance sustainability more quickly.

Bio:
Dr. Frank specializes in planning for sustainability, resilience, and equity. Specific areas include environmental, coastal, rural, regional, neighborhood, and participatory planning. She is the director of the Florida Center for Innovative Communities where she conducts applied, action-research projects to simultaneously assist communities and pilot test innovative planning approaches. At the University of Florida, she has led $1 million in funded research projects, including grants from the National Estuarine Research Reserve System Science Collaborative, Florida Sea Grant, and the inaugural UF-Gainesville Research Award, with the latter project receiving an Award of Excellence from the Florida Chapter of the American Planning Association. Her recent publications have appeared in the Journal of Planning Education and Research and Planning Theory and Practice, and as book chapters for Routledge.

Dr. Frank teaches courses in Urban and Regional Planning in the on-campus and online master’s programs. Specific courses include URP 6421 Environmental Land Use Planning and Management, and URP 6931 Community Engagement. She also advises doctoral students and teaches a college-wide course, DCP 6931 Doctoral Core 3 (dissertation preparation and writing for publication). She is a long-standing member of the college’s Sustainability Governing Board, and she has taught a course for the undergraduate major Sustainability and the Built Environment (SBE). Currently, she regularly advises SBE senior capstone projects.

Dr. Frank received a doctorate in City and Regional Planning from Georgia Tech, and a master’s degree in Community and Regional Planning from the University of Oregon. Her undergraduate majors were chemical engineering (Georgia Tech) and mathematics (University of Georgia). She previously worked as a planning consultant in Oregon and an environmental engineer in North Carolina. In the distant past, she was an officer in the U.S. Navy and taught at the Nuclear Power School in Orlando (the school’s site is now a traditional neighborhood development, Baldwin Park).

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