Research Topics

The Future Cities Lab is developing research related to three main areas:

Urban Transporation

  • Travel behavior analysis and demand integration management in the era of big data.

  • Public transport-oriented comprehensive transportation system design and operations optimization.

  • Risk identification and emergency managment of transportation system.

  • Sustainable development issues in city agglomoration.

Resource Managment

  • City scale and carrying capacity of resource and environment.

  • Emergency support system and simulation of urban operations.

  • Rules and drive mechanism of energy system revolution.

  • Public policy and market mechanism for smart grid, water supply, selective waste sorting and recycling.


  • Detection, control and emission assessment of air pollution.

  • Electronic health management and pension security system.

  • Optimal design and service operations of emergency treatment systems.

  • Smart application of big data analytics in healthcare.

Research topics within the Lab

Effects of intercity commuting on urban spatial structure and housing price

The aim of this research work is to construct a two-city economy system to explore the effects of intercity commuting on urban spatial structure and housing rents.

This research project also evaluates how investments on intercity transportation infrastructure affects the social welfare of the two-city system and the equilibrium utility.

Transport demand and modal split models between cities jfkljskdfjlksfjd

The aim of this research project is to invetigate the ineraction of travel modal split, urban spatial structure and public traffic management strategies (for example: price, velocity, frequency).

Specifically, the researcher explores the various aspects of the home-work-commuting nexus, including residential location, travel mode choice and travel costs. The project also evaluates the fairness and efficiency of public traffic management strategies in a monocentric city.

The Future Cities Lab is currently focused on investigating the interaction between future electrified urban mobility and electric power systems and to provide technical management insights to ensure the reliable and economic operation of those interdependent systems.

The researchers in the Future Cities Lab are currently developing quantitative state-of-the art modeling frameworks to try to address the following questions:

Techno-economic analysis of the potential of shared autonomous electric vehicles to provide power grid services.

What is the technical and economic potential for shared-autonomous electric vehicles (SAEVs) to provide power grid services, when needed, while maintaining excellent transportation satisfaction levels?

To answer this question, our researchers depart from techno-economic modeling, mathematical programming and analysis techniques to evaluate the conditions under which electricity pricing, transportation demand, SAEV fleet size and the interaction the system’s parameters would enable a successful and scalable implementation of these services.

Optimization under uncertainty for the coordinated autonomous electric vehicle charging scheduling and electric power generation.

How to coordinate the SAEV charging schedule considering the uncertainty in transportation flow patterns and in transportation demand?

Mobility systems are dynamic with a lot of uncertainties characterizing almost every aspect of them. How long will a trip take? When would the next ride-hailing customer arriver? What would be the price of electricity at the time when the vehicle would charge/discharge? These, and many other factors, are highly uncertain and require adequate modeling and decision-making frameworks that allows the consideration of these uncertainties in future planning scenarios. Our researchers are, therefore, relying on a state-of-the-art decision-making optimization frameworks that allows the proper treatment of these uncertainties.

Resilience assessment for the integrated operation of electric mobility services and electric power grid.

How to mitigate the risks of disruption for power grid and electric mobility services and ensure, and even improve, the resilience of both interconnected systems?

For this work, our researchers are investigating the potential for SAEVs to contribute to power system resilience via Vehicle-to-Grid power provision or directly via Vehicle-to-Consumer in case of power outages at critical locations, such as hospitals, health-care facilities or important factories and office buildings. Our researchers are working on understanding the major risk factors, both natural and technical, that could lead to these scenarios, and to develop suitable quantitative decision-aid frameworks to plan the SAEVs interventions to increase the power system resilience.

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