Research

The Center for Urban and Global Studies (CUGS) at Trinity College carries out research projects on a variety of urban-related topics regarding Hartford and other American and international cities. These projects provide opportunities for Trinity faculty and students, as well as non-Trinity scholars and urban practitioners, to work together to advance the urban scholarship and policies that address problems and challenges facing cities locally and globally. The first major project based on a conference organized by CUGS led to the publication of Rethinking Global Urbanism: Comparative Insights from Secondary Cities (co-edited by Xiangming Chen and Ahmed Kanna, Routledge, 2012; paperback, 2013). The second project that originated from a series of workshops focused on Hartford and its surrounding region has resulted in the publication of Confronting Urban Legacy: Rediscovering Hartford and New England’s Forgotten Cities (co-edited by Xiangming Chen and Nick Bacon ’10, Lexington Books, 2013). See the Publication page for more information on these two published books.

We are currently executing several major research projects. The first has stemmed from a symposium of the Co-Curricular Initiative “Global Urban Experience Across Time and Space,” supported by a Presidential Mellon grant to Trinity, co-led by Dario Euraque and Garth Myers, and co-sponsored by CUGS in April 2013. A proposal for an edited book based on the symposium tentatively titled Connecting to the City (co-edited by Garth Myers and Xiangming Chen) is currently under review at a university press. The contributors to the book include Trinity faculty members Thomas Harrington, Gary Reger, and Thomas Wickman, former visiting scholar Sarah Moser, recent graduate Curtis Stone ’10, and several non-Trinity scholars.

The second project at its early stage will lead to the publication of Research Handbook on Asian Cities (co-edited by Xiangming Chen, Sarah Moser, and Ratoola Kundu, Edward Elgar Publishing, forthcoming). The project includes a large international team of researchers and contributors from Trinity College and across Asia and beyond who will produce over 30 case-based chapters about 35-40 major cities that range from Tokyo to Istanbul. Besides Sarah Moser, three other recent and current visiting scholars at Trinity (Fakhmiddin Fazilov from Uzbekistan, Abbās Varij Kāzemi from Iran, Mustafa Ibraheem from Iraq) are involved in the project. More importantly, this project also provides an invaluable opportunity for several Trinity students (Nour Chamseddine ’17, Ellen Liu ’17, Julia Mardeusz ’16, John Murphy ’15, Thomas Rice ’17, Ivan Su ’16, Gaurav Toor ’14) to participate in data gathering, editing, and other related research tasks. A map showing the Asian cities covered in the book is here

Since the beginning of 2014, Garth Myers, with Xiangming Chen, has led a project comparing urbanization in China and South Africa from the theoretical and empirical vantage points of the global South. The project also includes Yuan Ren and Jiaming Sun at Fudan University in Shanghai, Jing Gan and Lan Wang at Tongji University in Shanghai, and Susan Parnell, Edgar Pieterse, and Gordon Pirie at the University of Cape Town (UCT), with the participation of additional scholars from China, Europe, and graduate students at UCT. The project has recently won a competitive grant of £20,000 (GBP) from the Urban Studies Foundation in the United Kingdom. The grant will support a workshop titled “Starting from the South: Alternative Visions of Comparative Urbanism” in Cape Town in May 2015 that will lead to the production of an edited book.

The published journal articles and book chapters involving current Trinity students and recent graduates, and visiting scholars as authors and co-authors are listed on the respective Publication pages under For Students and For Faculty.

Besides our own research projects, we have participated in other projects led by other organizations. Recently, Xiangming Chen and Jason Rojas have contributed to the production and publication of the Metro Hartford Progress Points report just released by the Hartford Foundation for Public Giving and several other important partner organizations. You can download this report here. Please visit the www.MetroHartfordProgressPoints.org website for more information that also pertains to CUGS’ second book Confronting Urban Legacy.