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Affiliated Faculty

CTR Research Faculty

Dr. Stephen H. Richards

Traffic safety, traffic engineering, and highway design; crash reconstruction, grade crossing, work zones. Dr. Richards founded the Journal for Transportation Safety & Security, and is the Co-Editor in Chief of this peer reviewed academic journal.

Dr. Chunjiao Dong

Crash frequency and severity analyses; Assessment of the effectiveness of implemented highway safety laws and regulations; Short-term traffic flow prediction; Travel demand analyses; Driving simulation and human factors

Civil & Environmental Engineering

Dr. Christopher Cherry, 2014 CTR Fellow

Sustainable Transportation; Non-Motorized Transportation Safety; Travel Behavior and Demand; Transportation Economics; Commercial Vehicle Safety; Transportation and the Environment; Multimodal Transport; Planning & Operations; Transit Security; Shared Vehicles

Dr. Baoshan Huang

Infrastructural materials – engineering characterization and multi-scale modeling of asphalt cement, asphalt paving mixtures, portland cement concrete, and other infrastructural materials
Pavement engineering – pavement design, testing and evaluation, pavement maintenance, and highway asset management
Geotechnical engineering – soil improvement, slope stability, deep excavations, drill shaft and other deep foundations

Dr. Asad Khattak

Special Advisor, Journal of Transportation Safety & Security
Intelligent transportation systems
Transportation safety
Sustainable transportation

Dr. Joshua Fu

Energy, climate change and air quality; Global and Regional Modeling of Ozone and Particular Matter; Transportation and air quality; Air Toxics Modeling; environmental modeling and decision support tools for complex multi-discipline ecosystem; Genetic algorithm and stochastic based optimization applications in a high performance computing; Data management and information technology applications in environmental management systems; Reliability, uncertainty, and risk analysis in civil and environmental systems; Large scale simulation and implementation in Environmental Systems; Human dimension and sustainability in environmental systems

Dr. Edwin Burdette

Structural engineering; Field testing of highway bridges; Design of an optimum mix for high performance concrete; Testing of anchors in concrete; Research and development of methodology used for prediction of anchor capacity

Dr. Richard Bennett, 2016 CTR Fellow

Engineering education
Masonry testing, analysis, and design
Structural safety and reliability

Dr. Lee Han

Real-time vehicle tracking with imperfect LPR input; Driving simulation and human factors; Mass evacuation strategies and operations; Traffic control and optimization; Transportation data management and analyses; Incident detection and management

Dr. Dayakar Penumadu

Carbon fiber reinforced polymeric composites and sandwich structures; Environmental degradation; Multi-scale mechanics; Multi-axial stress-strain-time behavior of multi-phase and granular materials; Non-invasive characterization and residual stress using; neutron and x-ray tomography and diffraction; Direct numerical simulations and porous media

Dr. Z. John Ma, 2015 CTR Fellow

Behavior and design of prestressed concrete bridges; Mechanics and applications of high performance concrete and fiber reinforced polymer composites; Sustainable Structures; Accelerated construction in highway bridges

Dr. John Schwartz

River channel adjustments through sediment transport and bank erosion processes, integrated with ecohydraulics restoration for aquatic physical habitat structure; Soil erosion processes and pollutant transport on disturbed land surfaces, including surface mining, bioenergy crop conversions, and stormwater runoff; Biogeochemical processes in forested watersheds impacted by acid pollutant deposition in the Great Smoky Mountains National Park; Water resource management of the Tennessee Valley Authority river system, examining potential effects of climate and land use change

Dr. Fred Wegmann
Professor Emeritus

Urban and Statewide Transportation Planning; Applications of Travel Demand Models; Relationship Between Transportation and Land Use

Dr. Eric Drumm
Biosystems Engineering & Soil Science

Soil-structure interaction effects, geotechnical instrumentation; Pavement geotechnics, and pavement system response; Mining induced subsidence damage, stability of residual soil in karst areas; Behavior and analysis of soil nailed slopes and walls

Earth & Planetary Sciences

Dr. Janet Hopson

The Department of Energy has recognized Dr. Hopson with one of five 2013 R&D Awards for her work developing and continuously improving the website The website was cited as one of the most widely used and useful U.S. Government websites, as well as for its contribution to federal programs such as Cash for Clunkers.


Dr. Larry Bray

Specialized in navigation transportation economics, including inland navigation cost estimation, related economic impacts, fuel consumption, emissions and other environmental impacts, and benefit-cost analysis.

Dr. Mark Burton

Network economics, with an emphasis on freight transportation. Past and current research is specifically focused on the competitive relationships between freight providers, the economic benefits and costs of publicly provided infrastructure, and related public policies.

Dr. Matthew N. Murray
Center for Business & Economic Research
Director, Howard H. Baker Jr. Center for Public Policy

Maintenance of the state econometric forecasting model that supports the annual Economic Report to the Governor and the quarterly Tennessee Business and Economic Outlook; transportation infrastructure finance; economic development incentives; economic/fiscal impact analysis; tax policy analysis; and education finance reform.

Dr. Charles Sims, 2015 CTR Fellow

Management of renewable resources, coupled human and natural systems, risk and uncertainty, invasive species, native pests, public land management, optimal control theory, dynamic programming, real options, computable general equilibrium.

Electrical Engineering & Computer Science

Dr Qing Cao

Dr. Qing Charles Cao, 2017 CTR Fellow

Dr. Cao’s primary research interests include complex software systems under distributed and uncertain environments, large-scale data analysis with applications in sensor networks, transportation and infrastructure, and distributed networking protocol design and optimization. He is a senior member of IEEE and a member of ACM. He has received an NSF Career Award. 

Food Science and Technology

Dr. Jennifer Richards, 2014 CTR Fellow

K12 STEM outreach; interdisciplinary curriculum development; integrating real world experiences into STEM instruction; program evaluation; food safety education; development and validation of STEM curricula

Forestry, Wildlife & Fisheries

Dr. Tim Rials

Structure and properties of wood/polymer interfaces; Raw material assessment and process monitoring using spectroscopy; Cure analysis of thermosetting polymers


Dr. Shih Lung Shaw, 2014 CTR Fellow

Transportation geography; Geographic information science (GIScience) and spatio-temporal analysis; Transportation planning and modeling; Air transportation; Time geography; Effects of information and communications technologies (ICT) on human activity and travel patterns; Spatiotemporal analysis of human dynamics; Space-time GIS; GIS for transportation (GIS-T)

Industrial & Systems Engineering

Dr. Alberto Garcia-Diaz

Operations Research in Transportation and Logistics; Highway Cost Allocation; Bridge and Pavement Management Systems; Statistical Design of Experiments; Facilities Planning

Dr. Mingzhou Jin, 2015 CTR Fellow

Operations Research; Logistics, Transportation, and Supply Chain Management (Director of the LTS lab); Advanced Manufacturing and Sustainability

Dr. Anahita Khojandi, 2016 CTR Fellow

Designing Efficient and Reliable Systems; Utilizing Concepts of Natural Interaction for Work Design; Defining the Value of Information in Supply Chains

Dr. Rapinder Sawhney, 2014 CTR Fellow

Designing Efficient and Reliable Systems; Utilizing Concepts of Natural Interaction for Work Design; Defining the Value of Information in Supply Chains

Institute for a Secure & Sustainable Environment

Dr. Rachel Chen, 2017 CTR Fellow

Rachel Chen directs the Center for Sustainable Business and Development, housed within the Institute for a Secure and Sustainable Environment. Her research addresses tourism, hospitality, and service management including sustainable development, economic impact assessments, forecast model evaluations, tourist behavior analyses, and geographic information system (GIS) applications in business development. Her teaching interests include sustainable business, strategic management, eco-tourism, tourism economics, tourism analysis, and marketing for hospitality and tourism.

Mr. Jonathan Overly, 2016 CTR Fellow

Jonathan Overly established the East Tennessee Clean Fuels Coalition (ETCleanFuels). Investigates energy efficiency in state buildings, improving energy and materials use in current and advanced vehicles; products and their related energy, environmental, and manufacturing aspects to life-cycle assessment (LCA)-based and energy-based projects. These life-cycle assessments include entire automobiles (Saturns, specifically), materials for new generation vehicles, and electronics such as CRT and LCD monitors and their components.

Kinesiology, Recreation & Sport Studies

Dr. Eugene Fitzhugh, 2016 CTR Fellow

Relationship of physical activity with chronic diseases across the lifespan; hypertension, obesity, diabetes, major depressive disorder, metabolic syndrome; how the built environment promotes or hinders physical activity or active living among adults and children; conducts secondary analyses on datasets from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey.

Marketing & Supply Chain

Dr. John Bell, 2015 CTR Fellow

Logistics and supply chain management, vehicle routing, facility location, supply chain strategy and risk; the impact of natural resource scarcity in the supply chain

Dr Mary Holcomb

Dr. Mary Holcomb, 2014 CTR Fellow

Dr. Holcomb's teaching interests includes logistics and supply chain principles and analytical methods. Her research interests focus on two related areas of strategic logistics and supply chain management: process design and metrics. Her work has appeared in the Journal of Business Logistics, Transportation Journal, and Supply Chain Management Review. She is on the editorial review board for Quality Management Journal, and is a former editor of the Transportation Energy Data Book.

Dr Lance Saunders

Dr. Lance Saunders, 2017 CTR Fellow

Lance Saunders is a Professional Engineer and an Assistant Professor in the Department of Marketing & Supply Chain Management. His research includes the development of analytical models for improving logistics and distribution performance, as well as how sustainability practices are effectively implemented at the supply chain level using network analysis techniques.

Dr. Georg Schaur, 2016 CTR Fellow

Using detailed trade data to quantify obstacles in the supply chain that impose costs on international shipments; evaluating policies that help firms overcome barriers in the international supply chain; effects of import competition on workers.

Materials Science & Engineering

Dr. Peter Liaw 

Mechanical behavior; Fatigue and fracture behavior; Nondestructive-evaluation; Neutron/synchrotron studies of advanced materials, including bulk-metallic glasses, nano-structural materials, high-entropy alloys, superalloys, steels, and intermetallics

Mechanical, Aerospace & Biomedical Engineering

Dr. Subhadeep Chakraborty, 2015 CTR Fellow

Characterization and mitigation of failures in complex systems using data-driven system identification and supervisory control; Electrochemical Sensor Development for Simultaneous Detection of Multiple Environmental Contaminants through Stochastic Signal Processing; modeling and analysis of behavioral dynamics in networked societies

Dr. David K. Irick, 2017 CTR Fellow

David “Butch” Irick is Research Assistant Professor and Research Director of Mechanical, Aerospace and Biomedical Engineering. His research interests include internal combustion engines, vehicle systems, and computer integrated engineering and manufacturing. He directed the UT Graduate Automotive Technology Education Center from 2004 through 2012. He has advised the university’s entry in DOE Advanced Vehicle Technology Competitions since 2003, and is the faculty advisor for the EcoCAR 3 team. He is a member of SAE International, the American Society of Mechanical Engineers, and a senior member of the Society of Manufacturing Engineers.

Plant Sciences, Landscape Architecture

Dr. Brad Collett, 2017 CTR Fellow

Brad Collett is an Associate Professor of Plant Sciences with a faculty appointment to the UT School of Landscape Architecture. His teaching and research interests include the capacity of landscape architecture and urban design to mediate the relationship between water resource health and the metabolisms, patterns and infrastructures of the urbanized landscape, including transportation. Brad co-authored HydroLIT, a national award-winning playbook for water quality improvement in Southeast Tennessee. He is director of the Tennessee River Project, and was a Fulbright Scholar at the University of Ljubljana, Slovenia in spring 2016.