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Articles 1 - 11 of 11

Full-Text Articles in Urban Studies and Planning

Decision Science For Community Development And Social Change, Michael P. Johnson Jr. Feb 2019

Decision Science For Community Development And Social Change, Michael P. Johnson Jr.

Michael P. Johnson

Operations research, also known as management science or decision science, is a mathematics-based discipline that draws from engineering, information systems, management, public policy and planning. OR enables individuals and organizations to make better decisions regarding manufacturing and logistics, service provision and strategy design. My particular interest in OR focuses on the needs of mission-driven and resource-constrained organizations that serve urban communities. In my talk I will describe how OR can use qualitative and quantitative analysis through meaningful engagement of communities to enable creative identification, formulation and solution of complex problems for local impact and social justice. Specific applications I'm ...


Emerging Trends And New Frontiers In Community Operational Research, Michael P. Johnson Jr., Gerald Midgley, George Chichirau Jul 2018

Emerging Trends And New Frontiers In Community Operational Research, Michael P. Johnson Jr., Gerald Midgley, George Chichirau

Michael P. Johnson

Community operational research (Community OR), and its disciplinary relation, community-based operations research, has an increasingly high profile within multiple domains that benefit from empirical and analytic approaches to problem solving. These domains are primarily concentrated within nonprofit services and local development. However, there are many other disciplinary and application areas for which novel applications and extensions of COR could generate valuable insights. This paper identifies a number of these, distinguishing between ‘emerging trends’ (mostly in well-studied areas of operations research, management science and analytics) and ‘new frontiers’, which can be found in traditions not commonly oriented towards empirical and analytic ...


What Is Community Operational Research?, Gerald Midgley, Michael P. Johnson Jr., George Chichirau Dec 2017

What Is Community Operational Research?, Gerald Midgley, Michael P. Johnson Jr., George Chichirau

Michael P. Johnson

Community Operational Research (Community OR) has been an explicit sub-domain of OR for more than 30 years. In this paper, we tackle the controversial issue of how it can be differentiated from other forms of OR. While it has been persuasively argued that Community OR cannot be defined by its clients, practitioners or methods, we argue that the common concern of all Community OR practice is the meaningful engagement of communities, whatever form that may take – and the legitimacy of different forms of engagement may be open to debate. We then move on to discuss four other controversies that have ...


Community-Engaged Operations Research: Trends, New Frontiers And Current Applications, Michael P. Johnson Jr. Nov 2017

Community-Engaged Operations Research: Trends, New Frontiers And Current Applications, Michael P. Johnson Jr.

Michael P. Johnson

Community-engaged operations research is an extension of multiple OR/MS traditions to support participatory scholarship, localized impact and social change. It applies critical thinking, evidence-based policy analysis, community participation and decision modeling to local interventions. It emphasizes the needs, voices and values of disadvantaged and marginalized populations. Through a survey of current scholarship in two complementary areas of inquiry, ‘community operational research’ (referring to work by primarily UK-based researchers) and ‘community-based operations research’ (referring to work by primarily US-based researchers), we develop principles for community-engaged OR, present critical questions that represent opportunities to expand the impact of this work, and ...


Improving Decision-Making Skills Of Nonprofit Professionals, Michael P. Johnson Jr., George Chichirau, Jason Wright Oct 2017

Improving Decision-Making Skills Of Nonprofit Professionals, Michael P. Johnson Jr., George Chichirau, Jason Wright

Michael P. Johnson

Nonprofits face gaps in organizational capacity, including program design and evaluation, but previous research suggests that capacity-building exercises have a positive effect. We describe a data analytics training workshop with staff from Boston-area nonprofits reflecting a wide range of sectors. Through analysis of participant work on case studies provided by the instructor, we examine how participants made sense of training materials, the various strategies employed by participants to solve three case study problems, and participant feedback about the session. Our findings provide a basis for novel interventions in community based operations research. 


Decision Modeling For Housing And Community Development: A Methodology For Evidence-Based Urban And Regional Planning, Michael P. Johnson Jr. Aug 2017

Decision Modeling For Housing And Community Development: A Methodology For Evidence-Based Urban And Regional Planning, Michael P. Johnson Jr.

Michael P. Johnson

Urban community development corporations and other local institutions routinely face challenging problems in housing and economic development that require substantial expertise in data analytics and decision modeling. Recent research, inspired by local responses to the housing foreclosure crisis, and developed in cooperation with Boston-area CDCs, has resulted in a collection of applications that can assist CDCs and similar organizations to design local interventions for acquisition and redevelopment of housing. This paper describes these applications. The first of these is values and objective design, i.e. the process of identifying decision opportunities. The second of these is data analytics, or the ...


Measuring Success: Community Analytics For Local Economic Development, Michael P. Johnson Jr., Sandeep Jani Sep 2016

Measuring Success: Community Analytics For Local Economic Development, Michael P. Johnson Jr., Sandeep Jani

Michael P. Johnson

Main Street organizations are community-based nonprofits across the USA dedicated to local economic development through physical improvements, technical assistance to businesses, marketing and placebuilding. In this paper we identify metrics associated with success in local economic development and generate decision opportunities for improved program design and implementation. Our community partners, Main Street organizations in the city of Boston, want to ensure that data they collect about their service areas can help them measure progress towards achieving their individual goals as well as identify programs and initiatives that make best use of their resources and expertise. Using a mixed methods, inductive ...


Data And Analytics For Neighborhood Development: Smart Shrinkage Decision Modeling In Baltimore, Maryland, Michael P. Johnson Jr., Justin Hollander, Eliza D. Whiteman Jul 2015

Data And Analytics For Neighborhood Development: Smart Shrinkage Decision Modeling In Baltimore, Maryland, Michael P. Johnson Jr., Justin Hollander, Eliza D. Whiteman

Michael P. Johnson

Many older cities in the United States confront the problem of long-term decline in population and economic activity resulting in blighted conditions that make conventional revitalization initiatives unlikely to succeed. Smart shrinkage, a planning approach that emphasizes alternative land uses while preserving quality of life, offers a way for cities to remain desirable places to live and work. However, there is little research on empirical methods to support planning decisions consistent with smart shrinkage. We present results from two studies with planners from the City of Baltimore that provide novel insights regarding ways in which planners can perform vacant property ...


Data And Analytics For Neighborhood Development: Smart Shrinkage Decision Modeling In Baltimore, Maryland, Michael P. Johnson Jr., Justin Hollander, Eliza D. Whiteman Jun 2015

Data And Analytics For Neighborhood Development: Smart Shrinkage Decision Modeling In Baltimore, Maryland, Michael P. Johnson Jr., Justin Hollander, Eliza D. Whiteman

Michael P. Johnson

Many older cities in the United States confront the problem of long-term declines in population and economic activity resulting in blighted conditions that make conventional revitalization initiatives unlikely to succeed. Smart shrinkage, a planning approach that emphasizes alternative land uses while preserving quality of life, offers a way for cities to remain desirable places to live and work. However, there is little research on empirical methods to support planning decisions consistent with smart shrinkage. We present results from two studies with planners from the City of Baltimore that provide novel insights regarding ways in which planners can perform vacant property ...


Parcel-Level Redevelopment Strategies For Distressed Neighborhoods, Michael P. Johnson Jr., Justin Hollander Oct 2013

Parcel-Level Redevelopment Strategies For Distressed Neighborhoods, Michael P. Johnson Jr., Justin Hollander

Michael P. Johnson

Certain distressed neighborhoods cannot support traditional residential-focused development. For these communities, we develop decision models for acquisition and redevelopment of chronically vacant lands and structures for primarily non-residential and greening uses. We address social benefits and costs of redevelopment strategies, parcel clustering to exploit economies of scale, and conflicting values among stakeholders. We illustrate our models using data from Baltimore, MD.


Michael Johnson Research Profile, Michael P. Johnson Jr. Apr 2012

Michael Johnson Research Profile, Michael P. Johnson Jr.

Michael P. Johnson

This document summarizes my disciplinary training and my research products.