TRB Category: 

M. Edward Kim

Associate Professor
Western New England University, Civil & Environmental Engineering

Research and Background

Research Theme 1: Sustainable Transit Systems and Innovations Most of my doctoral research projects dealt with bus transit planning and operations at macro levels. In an early project, I considered different types of bus services (i.e., conventional, flexible, and variable-type) between a terminal and a local region. The results showed that when the demand has high variability over time, the integrated provision of conventional and flexible bus services reduces the total cost, which is the sum of operator and user costs. In a further project, the variable-type bus service was extended with a more generalized analysis. I considered multiple regions, multiple periods, and fleets of vehicles with different sizes. Another significant extension completed was coordinating and integrating the operations of different types of bus services. Integration of many-to-many fixed-route bus services and demand-responsive operations (i.e., ride-sharing algorithms) at individual passenger levels can produce promising research outputs. The methods for solving such detailed transit integration problems should constitute significant methodological and practical contributions toward adaptive public transit systems. Further extensions toward societal and behavioral impacts of shared-mobility, driverless vehicle operation, implementation of electric buses in public transportation systems, urban mobility analytics, smart transit network design and operation analyses as well as research in multimodal transit integration will be an important research direction for my academic career. Research Theme 2: Transportation Infrastructure Network Analysis I consider the research area of rail transit and railroad engineering for my diverse portfolio. I have published simulation-based rail transit alignment optimization papers. I also had an externally funded research project from USDOT’s Federal Railroad Administration (FRA) to analyze freight (railroad) transportation system resilience based on the topology of networks. The project explored short-term and long-term recovery planning (i.e., selection, sequence, and scheduling of resources) from disruptions. Network centrality, as a resilience measure, is used to determine how the investment decisions affect the network level topology. The trade-offs between the holding capacity and link capacity improvements are analyzed as well. For network level infrastructure analyses, I additionally plan to extend my previously developed simulation models into a comprehensive railroad network analysis tool. As freight transportation demand is projected to increase significantly over the next several decades, it is very critical to have strategic management decisions from the long-term and short-term network improvement plans. It is also very critical to have management decisions for resilient railroad infrastructure (i.e., be able to quickly return to normal operations) from unexpected disruptions.

Connect with M. Edward Kim

M. Edward Kim
1215 Wilbraham Rd,
Springfield, Massachusetts 01119