I’m an Associate Professor in the Munk School of Global Affairs & Public Policy at the University of Toronto, and a member of the Innovation Policy Lab. I’m also a Visiting Senior Fellow in the International Inequalities Institute at the London School of Economics.
I study the spatial structure of work and prosperity. Much of my current research investigates how and why economic opportunity in the United States has become so deeply geographically polarized and unequal. Some of this work focuses on the role of technology, particularly innovations that are highly disruptive and rich in tacit knowledge. I’m also interested in the wider impacts of frontier workers applying these new technologies, including on workers outside of tech and in left behind places. At the same time, I’m building the first geographically-granular measures of wealth in the US, which demonstrate that inequality in communities’ wealth levels has grown much larger than corresponding spatial income disparities.
I also work on the economics of diversity, in particular aiming to understand the productivity impacts of ethnic- and gender-diverse teams, workplaces, and cities. My work in this area has quantified economic benefits of immigrant diversity in the US, and Norway. An ongoing project examines these themes in the context of the United Kingdom (details here).
For my study on Brexit and immobility, my co-authors and I won the Understanding Society Paper Prize. In 2016, my work on the economic value of local social networks won the Urban Land Institute Prize for the best paper published in the Journal of Economic Geography. Back in 2013, I also won an Early Career Award from the Regional Studies Association.
I serve on the Editorial Board of the Journal of Economic Geography, as well as at Progress in Economic Geography. Between 2017 and 2021, I was an Editor at Regional Studies.
Cutting across my research interests, I’m interested in policy efforts to stimulate prosperity. I have advised governments and NGOs on issues of regional and international development, including the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD), the U.S. Economic Development Administration, and the World Bank.
Before joining U of T, I held academic appointments at Queen Mary, University of London; the University of Southampton; the London School of Economics; and the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. I received my PhD from UCLA.