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Biography

My research focuses on environmental planning and urban sustainability, specialized in urban energy planning, socio-ecological systems, green infrastructure, and planning and design for climate change mitigation and adaptation. My work supports an integrated planning and design approach to the long-term resilience of natural and built environments that provide synergetic environmental and social services for all people and wildlife. As a member of the UTA President’s Sustainability Committee and a Community Service Learning Faculty Fellow, my teaching and professional projects are based on environmental and sustainability planning education and outreach, collaborating with local governments, non-profits, professionals and educators. 

Professional Preparation

    • 2012 Ph.D. in Landscape Architecture & Environmental PlanningUniversity of California, Berkeley
    • 2007 M. Area Studies in Asia-Pacific StudiesGraduate Institute of Peace Studies, Kyung Hee University
    • 2005 B.S. in Environmental Science & Ecological EngineeringKorea University

Appointments

    • Sept 2012 to Present Assist Professor
      University of Texas at Arlington   Office of the President   Office of the Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs   School of Urban and Public Affairs   City and Regional Planning

Memberships

  • Membership
    • Sept 2012 to Present American Planning Association
    • Jan 2012 to Present Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning
    • Nov 2011 to Present Association of American Geographers
  • Membership
    • Apr 2015 to Present Korean-American Association for Geospatial and Environmental Sciences

Awards and Honors

    • May  2016 Professor of the Year -- Excellence in Higher Education Award sponsored by Arlington Sunrise Rotary Club
      Description:

      The Rotary Club recognizes outstanding faculty across UTA's schools and colleges.

    • May  2016 CAPPA Stars for Shining Ever So Brightly sponsored by CAPPA
      Description:

      The award recognizes extraordinary work of the CAPPA faculty and staffs. 

    • Feb  2016 UTA Faculty Senate Travel Award sponsored by UTA Faculty Senate
    • Sep  2015 What's Next Seed Grant sponsored by College of Architecture, Planning and Public Affairs
      Description:

      Collegewide competition (Role: PI)

    • Aug  2015 Interdisciplinary Research Program Grant sponsored by The University of Texas at Arlingotn
      Description:

      Top 5 projects awarded out of 48 team proposals campuswide (Role: PI)

    • Apr  2015 Office of Sustainability Travel Support Grant (multiple awards) sponsored by The University of Texas at ArlingtonUniversity of Texas at Arlington
    • Sep  2013 Community Service Learning Faculty Fellow sponsored by University of Texas at Arlington
    • May  2012 Beatrix Farrand Dissertation Research Grant ; Beatrix Farrand Travel Grant (multiple awards); Dept. of LAEP Block Grant (multiple awards); Graduate Division Summer Grant ; Dean’s Normative Time Fellowship from UC Berkeley sponsored by UC Berkeley
      Description:

      along with graduate student teaching and research assistantships (Fall 2007 - Spring 2012)

    • Jul  2009 Eloise Gerry Fellowship from the Graduate Women In Science (GWIS) sponsored by Graduate Women In Science
      Description:

      Top 10 dissertation proposals awarded out of 305 fellowship applicants nationwide

    • Mar  2005 All-Expense Paid Award (Tuition, Travels, Room & Board); Overseas Study Scholarship from Kyung Hee University, South Korea sponsored by Kyung Hee University
      Description:

      Full tuition, travels, room and board support for all semesters (Spring 2005 - Fall 2006)

    • Dec  2002 Best Honors Scholarships; Honors Scholarship from Korea University, South Korea sponsored by Korea University
      Description:

      Academic Excellence (Fall 2001 & Fall 2002; Spring 2002)

News Articles

Research and Expertise

  • Environmental planning

    Planning for climate change mitigation and adaptation: urban energy planning, climate-responsive urban design, green infrastructure, social-ecological systems, Geographic Information Science (GIS); environmnetal education; community service learning; Asia-Pacific region

Publications

Presentations

Projects

  • 2015
    • Aug 2015 to July 2016 The Dallas-FortWorth Community Opportunities for Resilience Education: Climate Science Education Model for the Public and K-12

      Develop an interdisciplinary education model to improve public understanding of climate-related extremes such as floods, droughts, and heat waves in the DFW Metroplex and surrounding region

      Role: Principal Investigator PI: Yekang Ko
  • 2014
    • Sept 2014 to Jan 2015 Climate Change/Extreme Weather Vulnerability and Risk Assessments for the Dallas-Fort Worth Regional Transportation Infrastructure

      Assess the criticality and vulnerability of the transportation infrastructure to projected extreme weather events and climate change for the North Central Texas region by using likelihood of hazard and the magnitude of adverse consequences. Funded by the North Central Texas Council of Governments

      Role: Co-PI PI: Arne Winguth
  • 2013
    • Apr 2013 to May 2014 Monitoring and Modeling Tree Growth, Longevity, and Performance

      Establish relations between remotely sensed tree crown projection area and other tree dimensions for previously measured Sacramento street trees; use time series analysis to document changes in tree survival, growth, and energy performance for a sample of Sacramento Shade trees planted from 1991-1993. Prime sponser: US Forest Service 

      Role: Principal Investigator PI: Yekang Ko

Support & Funding

This data is entered manually by the author of the profile and may duplicate data in the Sponsored Projects section.
    • Sept 2015 to Present What's Next Seed Grant sponsored by  - $10000
    • Aug 2015 to July 2016 The Dallas-FortWorth Community Opportunities for Resilience Education: Climate Science Education Model for the Public and K-12 sponsored by  - $17880
    • Sept 2014 to Feb 2015 Climate Change/Extreme Weather Vulnerability and Risk Assessments for the Dallas-Fort Worth Regional Transportation Infrastructure sponsored by  - $43360
    • Apr 2013 to May 2014 Monitoring and Modeling Tree Growth, Longevity, and Performance sponsored by  - $28363

Courses

      • CIRP 5308-002 METROPOLITAN SUSTAINABILITY AND PLAN MAKING

        This course provides a road map for examining sustainability at the personal, community and metropolitan levels and guides planners to link sustainability to plan making and practice. It first explores the origin and theories of the sustainability concept in urban planning. Various dimensions of sustainable urban development will be examined, including the fundamental role of environmental sustainability to promote long-term economic vitality and social equity. The course also provides practical tools and training in writing and communication such as: a policy memo writing, oral presentation and comprehensive plan making for achieving metropolitan sustainability. 

        Spring - Regular Academic Session - 2016 Download Syllabus Contact info & Office Hours
      • CIRP 5350-001 Environmental Planning

        This graduate seminar explores various issues, processes and practical tools of environmental planning to protect public health and ecosystems. Students will learn how environmental regulations and policies at federal and state levels can be addressed through the local planning process. The topics include: water supply, water quality, air quality, climate change mitigation, solid and toxic waste management, landscape and habitat protection, wetland and coastal zone management, natural hazards and disasters, farmland and forest protection, and mining and energy. Practical tools in the local planning process include development reviews/environmental impacts assessments; natural and built environment inventory; land suitability analysis; and comprehensive planning. Students will have an opportunity to work on a community service-learning project relevant to environmental planning. 

        Spring - Regular Academic Session - 2016 Download Syllabus Contact info & Office Hours
      • CIRP 5308-002 METROPOLITAN SUSTAINABILITY AND PLAN MAKING

        This course provides a road map for examining sustainability at the personal, community and metropolitan levels and guides planners to link sustainability to plan making and practice. It first explores the origin and theories of the sustainability concept in urban planning. Various dimensions of sustainable urban development will be examined, including the fundamental role of environmental sustainability to promote long-term economic vitality and social equity. The course also provides practical tools and training in writing and communication such as: a policy memo writing, oral presentation and comprehensive plan making for achieving metropolitan sustainability. 

        Spring - Regular Academic Session - 2015 Download Syllabus Contact info & Office Hours
      • CIRP 5350-001 Environmental Planning

        This graduate seminar explores various issues, processes and practical tools of environmental planning to protect public health and ecosystems. Students will learn how environmental regulations and policies at federal and state levels can be addressed through the local planning process. The topics include: water supply, water quality, air quality, climate change mitigation, solid and toxic waste management, environmental justice, landscape and habitat protection, wetland and coastal zone management, natural hazards and disasters, farmland and forest protection, and mining and energy. Practical tools in the local planning process include development reviews/environmental impacts assessments; natural and built environment inventory; land suitability analysis; and comprehensive planning. Students will have an opportunity to work on a community service learning project relevant to environmental planning. 

        Spring - Regular Academic Session - 2015 Download Syllabus Contact info & Office Hours
      • CIRP 4320-001 Sustainable Communities

        This course explores broad environmental and social issues in sustainable communities. Through weekly service learning activities, the course serves as a laboratory for working with governmental and non-governmental organizations in the DFW area and developing issue-based, action research projects to solve real-world problems in our communities. Potential topics include urban water management, food and resources, wildlife conservation, native landscaping, waste management, green building, renewable energy, housing diversity, alternative transportation and sustainable community planning and design. This course combines lecture, discussion, site visits and collaborative team work for service learning projects.

        Fall - Regular Academic Session - 2014 Download Syllabus Contact info & Office Hours
      • CIRP 5327-001 Introduction to Green Cities and Transportation

        This graduate course explores physical forms and functions of green cities: how landscape, land use and transportation planning affect human health and the environment. The course consists of three modules: green infrastructure, sustainable transportation and synthesis. It first surveys how green infrastructure can solve various environmental problems in cities and enhance human health.  It encompasses planning for urban hydrology, parks, wildlife habitats, public health, and urban heat management.  The second module investigates local and regional climate action plans by focusing on how municipalities reduce energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions through renewable energy; energy efficient technologies; and smarter land use and transportation planning.  The third module, “synthesis,” is a five-week project workshop to develop a climate action plan for a city in DFW. The course is a combined lecture, guest lecture from public and private sectors, field studies, student-led discussion and collaborative teamwork. As an elective course for the GIS certification, examples of GIS analyses on each topic will be presented through lectures. There is no prerequisite for this course.

        Fall - Regular Academic Session - 2014 Download Syllabus Contact info & Office Hours
      • CIRP 5350-001 Environmental Planning

        This graduate seminar explores environmental planning issues, including: federal, state, and local planning for water supply, water quality, air quality, solid and toxic waste, environmental justice, landscape and habitat protection, wetland and coastal zone management, natural hazards and natural disasters and farmland and forest protection. The course will also cover environmental planning processes and tools, including: development reviews/environmental impacts assessments; natural and built environment inventory; GIS suitability analysis; and ecosystem services valuation. Students will have the opportunity to develop individual research projects on environmental planning topics during the course of the semester.

        Spring - Regular Academic Session - 2014 Download Syllabus Contact info & Office Hours
      • CIRP 5308-001 Metropolitan Sustainability and Plan Making

        This course provides a road map for examining sustainability at the personal, community and metropolitan levels and guides planners to link their concerns to planning ethics and practice. It first explores the origin of the sustainability concept in urban planning. Various theoretical dimensions of sustainable development will be examined, including the role of environmental sustainability to promote both economic vitality and social equity. The course also provides practical tools and training in writing, communication and plan making for achieving metropolitan sustainability.

        Spring - Regular Academic Session - 2014 Download Syllabus Contact info & Office Hours
      • CIRP 5327-001 Introduction to Green Cities and Transportation

        This graduate course explores green infrastructure and how urban development and human activities in cities, particularly with regards to the transportation sector, affect the environment. The course consists of three modules: green infrastructure, sustainable transportation and synthesis. It first surveys how urban park planning through green infrastructure can solve urban environmental problems.  It encompasses urban hydrology, wildlife habitats and the effects of land use and land cover on urban heat island and public health.  The second module investigates how urban forms and transportation systems affect energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions. The third module “synthesis” is a five-week service learning project workshop to develop a green community plan for the Six Points Urban Village in Fort Worth. The course is a combined lecture, guest lecture from public and private sectors, student-led discussion and collaborative teamwork. There is no prerequisite for this course.

        Fall - Regular Academic Session - 2013 Download Syllabus Contact info & Office Hours
      • CIRP 4320-001 Sustainable Communities

        This course explores broad environmental and social issues in sustainable communities. Through weekly service learning activities, the course serves as a laboratory for working with governmental and non-governmental organizations in the DFW area and developing issue-based, action research projects to solve real-world problems in our communities. Potential topics include urban water management, food and resources, wildlife conservation, native landscaping, waste management, green building, renewable energy, housing diversity, alternative transportation and community design. This course combines lecture, discussion, site visits and collaborative team work for service learning projects.

        Fall - Regular Academic Session - 2013 Download Syllabus Contact info & Office Hours
      • CIRP 5308-001 Metropolitan Sustainability and Planning Ethics
        This course provides a road map for examining sustainability at the personal, community and metropolitan levels and guides planners to link their concerns to planning ethics and practice. It first explores the origin of the sustainability concept in urban planning. Various theoretical dimensions of sustainable development will be examined, including the role of environmental sustainability to promote both economic vitality and social equity. The course also provides practical tools and training in writing, communication and plan making for achieving metropolitan sustainability. 
        Spring - Regular Academic Session - 2013 Download Syllabus
      • INTS 4388-001 Special Topics in Interdisciplinary Studies: Sustainable Communities
        This special topic course explores broad environmental and social issues in sustainable communities. The course reveals underlying natural processes that support a sustainable urban economy, and that, at the same time, are affected by unsustainable built environment and activities.  The course serves as a laboratory for working with governmental and non-governmental organizations in the DFW area and developing issue-based, action research projects to solve real-word environmental problems in our communities. Potential topics include water conservation, waste management, wildlife conservation, watershed protection, energy efficiency, renewable energy, sustainable transportation and public participation.  The course combines lecture, student-led discussion, in-class activities, site visits and collaborative team work for service learning projects in DFW communities. There is no prerequisite for this course. 
        Spring - Regular Academic Session - 2013 Download Syllabus
      • CIRP 5327-001 INTRODUCTION TO GREEN CITIES AND TRANSPORTATION
        This graduate course explores the ecology of cities and how urban development and human activities in cities, particularly with regards to the transportation sector, affect the environment. The course consists of three modules: urban ecology, sustainable transportation and synthesis. It first surveys natural processes in cities, which encompass water cycle, vegetation, wildlife, urban agriculture and climate. The second module focuses on low carbon urban development by investigating the evidence on how the interrelation between urban form and transportation systems affects energy consumption and CO2 emission. The third module “synthesis” is a four-week workshop to develop a comprehensive 100-year green city roadmap for the City of Arlington. The course is a combined lecture, student-led seminar and collaborative teamwork. There is no prerequisite for this course.
        Fall - Regular Academic Session - 2012 Download Syllabus

Service to the Community

  • Appointed
    • Mar 2016 to  Present Fort Worth Museum of Science and History Science Communication Fellow

      Founding member (invited)

      The Science Communication Fellow Program at the Forth Worth Museum of Science and History creates an interdisciplinary extreme weather unit that will provide supportive training and opportunities for researchers while engaging the public through the Research and Learning Center of the museum on extreme weather events in the DFW region.

    • Sept 2015 to  Present Inclusive DFW Consortium

      Founding member (Invited)

      The Inclusive DFW Consortium aims to collaborate, educate, and innovate for inclusive economic development in North Texas. The Consortium is working on an inaugural working paper that focuses on challenges and solutions for climate adaptation, a growing area of concern for businesses and residents, particularly those from low-income communities. This working paper synthesizes research from leading academicians and expert practitioners in inclusive economic development, sustainable development, urban planning, and social and financial innovation.

  • Volunteered
    • Jan 2013 to  Present Community service learning projects

      • Community Development & Planning, City of Arlington

      • Park & Recreation, City of Arlington

      • Environmental Services and Sustainability, City of Denton

      • Community Development, City of Kennedale

      • Planning, City of Plano

      • North Central Texas Council of Goverments 

      • East Fort Worth Montessori Academy

      • UTA Composting

      • Heart of Arlington Neighborhood Association

      • River Legacy Living Science Center

      • Fellowship of the Arts, Riverside Sustainable Development Committee, Fort Worth

Service to the Profession

  • Appointed
    • Jan 2012 to  Present Journal reviewer (Invited)

      Environment and Planning B

      Urban Design International

      Cities and Environment

      Energy and Buildings

      IEEE Transactions on Systems, Man and Cybernetics: Systems

      Energies

      Urban Forestry & Urban Greening

      Arboriculture and Urban Forestry

      Transport Policy

      International Journal of Sustainable Transportation

      Journal of Urban Planning and Development

      Ocean and Coastal Management

  • Volunteered
    • Jan 2008 to  Present Executive Committee

      SAVE International

    • Apr 2015 to  Apr 2015 Award reviewer

      Association of American Geographers Energy and Environment Specialty Group (AAG EESG) Awards 

Service to the University

  • Appointed
    • Sept 2013 to  May 2014 2013-2014 UTA Community Service Learning Faculty Fellow

      UTA Center for Community Service Learning

    • Feb 2015 to  Present The College Creation Team (SUPA/SOA)

      Develop proposals regarding vision, mission, strategic plan, and academic units etc.

  • Volunteered
    • Nov 2012 to  Present UTA President's Sustainability Committee

      Curriculum, Reseach, and Community Engagement (CRCE) member; serve as a judge for the Annual Celebration of Excellence by Students (ACES) Sustainability Award