A Personal Website of Dr. Catherine Ross @ Georgia Institute of Technology

Regents' Professor, Harry West Chair, School of City & Regional Planning ||School of Civil & Environmental Engineering

Director, Center for Quality Growth and Regional Development

ADVANCE Professor, College of Design

Georgia Institute of Technology

View Ross' full C.V.


Catherine Ross is an internationally recognized expert on transportation systems planning, urban planning and quality growth. She has extensive experience in both the public and private sector and directs Georgia Institute of Technology’s Center for Quality Growth and Regional Development (CQGRD) where she also serves as serves as Harry West Professor and Advance Professor in the School of City and Regional Planning in the College of Design. She is a member of the National Academy of Public Administration (NAPA) and past president of the National Association of Collegiate Schools of Planning (ACSP). Ross has served on numerous National Academies committees including the Transportation Research Board Executive Committee, University Transportation Centers Program and on the board of directors of the ENO Transportation Foundation. She earned a Masters Degree and a Ph.D. in City and Regional Planning from Cornell University and completed post-doctorate work at the University of California, Berkeley. She has conducted research for numerous governmental agencies, foundations and the private sector. In July 2009, Ross was selected to advise the Obama Administration on the first-ever White House Office of Urban Affairs. She is the editor of Megaregions: Planning for Global Competitiveness (Island Press, 2009) and the co-author of The Inner City: Urban Poverty and Economic Development in the Next Century (1997). Ross has conducted research on transportation and urban planning and how to make cities, neighborhoods and regions safer, healthier places for all to live. She is the author of numerous articles, books, research reports and media publications including the Wall Street Journal, Urban Land Institute, the Atlanta Journal Constitution and speaks regularly to national and international forums.

Educational Background

Ph.D., City and Regional Planning, Cornell University
M.R.P., Regional Planning, Cornell University
B.A., History, Sociology, and Education Certification, Kent State University


  • Transportation and Infrastructure
  • Land Use Planning and Regional Governance
  • Healthy Places
  • Regional Science (Megaregions)

Research Ambitions

An internationally known transportation and urban planner, Catherine Ross has conducted research and has project experience at the local, national, and international levels. In addition, she co-founded Euquant, Inc., an Atlanta-based economic and planning consulting firm. Her research has been funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF), U.S. Department of Transportation (DOT), Housing and Urban Development (HUD), the Ford Foundation, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF), U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), PEW Charitable Trusts, Lincoln Institute of Land Policy-China, Federal Transit Administration, and many local, city, and state governments throughout the country.

Recent Courses

  • CP 6311/ CEE 6602 | Introduction to Transportation Planning
  • CP 6233 | Sustainable Urban Development
  • CP 6052 | Growth, Regionalism and Cities


The Center for Quality Growth & Regional Planning (CQGRD) , led by Dr. Catherine Ross, works to advance its initiatives through collaboration with a wide range of university, government, and organizational partnerships. While many of these are project-specific, three are formal partnerships involving long-term efforts to build sustainable development and advance research of practical value. These partnerships include:

Healthy Places Research Group (HPRG) progresses a policy agenda that improves public health through the design of the built environment. HPRG invites any interested member of the public to become involved at its regular meetings.

NSF ADVANCE is a national campaign adopted at Georgia Tech to aid the career advancement of women in higher education. Catherine Ross leads the initiative for the College of Architecture and through her various roles on campus through providing resources and recognition for women.

Piedmont Alliance for Quality Growth formed in 2009 to focus policy efforts of mayors in the Piedmont-Atlantic Megaregion (PAM) at the scale of a megaregion. This alliance will provide the intellectual and support infrastructure for issues on water, transportation and energy to make the megaregion globally competitive.