Visiting HTS Scholar Examines History of Urban Travel Demand Modeling

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Konstantinos Chatzis, Visiting Professor in Ivan Allen College’s School of History, Technology, and Society (HTS) through July 2011, is tackling the history of urban travel forecasting (UTF).

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Engineers have been using mathematical models to forecast urban travel for nearly 50 years.  Despite their impact on urban form and the ways cities work, the history of these engineering tools has been accorded very little interest until now.

Konstantinos Chatzis, Visiting Professor in Ivan Allen College’s School of History, Technology, and Society (HTS) through July 2011, is tackling the history of urban travel forecasting (UTF).  The first analysis of its type, his work will focus on France and the United States from the 1950s to the present.

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  • Konstantinos Chatzis Konstantinos Chatzis
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Engineers have been using mathematical models to forecast urban travel for nearly 50 years.  Despite their impact on urban form and the ways cities work, the history of these engineering tools has been accorded very little interest until now.

Konstantinos Chatzis, Visiting Professor in Ivan Allen College’s School of History, Technology, and Society (HTS) through July 2011, is tackling the history of urban travel forecasting (UTF).  The first analysis of its type, his work will focus on France and the United States from the 1950s to the present.

“UTF tools remain of key importance in the transportation profession and in urban transport policies,” said Chatzis. “To size and assess new urban transport infrastructures, such as urban highways or subways, or to make optimal use of existing capacity (thanks to policy instruments such as tolls and real time information systems), one needs to forecast urban traffic.”

Chatzis’ analysis will be carried out from a comparative and transnational perspective by focusing on the circulation and transfer of the modelling practices, and will treat both the “content” of the modelling or mathematical formulas and the entire “production-use” chain of these formulas: actors involved, household travel surveys, computers, and software required.

“HTS, with the pluridisciplinary profile of its faculty, is the right place for my research, and the impressive range of documents available within the Georgia Tech Library and its counterpart at Emory University make them just stunning sites to work,” said Chatzis.  He anticipates completing the field work for the American part of his research project and producing a sketch of the book he plans on the history of Urban Travel Forecasting in France and the United States.

A native of Greece, Chatzis is a research scholar at the Ecole des Ponts ParisTech, an engineering school.  He graduated from the National Technical University of Athens, a five-year engineering institution, and earned a PhD in social sciences from the Ecole des Ponts ParisTech in France.  He is a Senior Researcher at INRETS (National Institute for Transport and Safety Research-FRANCE), and a tenured full-time researcher at the LATTS (Laboratory Technology, Territories and Societies), a French interdisciplinary research center located at Ecole des Ponts.

Chatzis is Associate Editor for the journal Engineering Studies and member of the Editorial Board of another journal, Almagest.  His main research interests are: the engineering profession, engineering education, and engineering sciences in France and Greece in the 19th and 20th centuries; the development of large urban socio-technical systems centuries, such as water supply networks, storm water drain systems and transport networks (19th-20th centuries); the rationalization process in French industry in the 20th century; and transnational and comparative history of engineers and engineering.

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Ivan Allen College of Liberal Arts

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Keywords
and Society, History of Urban Travel Demand Modeling, ivan allen college, Konstantinos Chatzis, School of History, Technology
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  • Created By: Lauren Langley
  • Workflow Status: Published
  • Created On: Oct 12, 2010 - 9:58am
  • Last Updated: Oct 7, 2016 - 11:07pm