Photo of Tracy ZafianTracy Zafian

Research Fellow

Tracy has almost 25 years of experience as a transportation researcher and planner, including for local and regional governments and in academia. She worked as a transportation and land use planner for the La Crosse, Wisconsin MPO and the Franklin Regional Council of Governments in Massachusetts. At UMass Amherst, prior to joining the UMTC, Tracy served as a researcher and the lab manager for 10 years at the Human Performance Laboratory (HPL), where she conducted driving research and helped with lab administration and outreach. The lab conducts both driving simulator studies and field studies on a variety of topics including driver training, driver distraction, roadway design, and vehicle automation. At the UMTC, Tracy has continued doing some research. Her role is also to support, facilitate and help coordinate research with UMTC research partners, including MassDOT. One priority is building the affiliate research network connecting academic researchers with state transportation agencies and practitioners in the field.

Tracy’s research interests include transportation access and equity, sustainable mobility, and human factors in transportation, including driver training. During her HPL days, she became accredited as a driving instructor, to help with designing effective training programs for teens. She is also interested in promoting women and minorities in STEM fields, such as transportation. She served as a co-director for UMass Amherst’s Summer Transportation Institute, a multi-week program for high school students which introduces them to various professionals and aspects of the transportation field and encourages them to pursue transportation-related careers. 

Tracy has a M.S. in Transportation from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, and M.S. in Urban and Regional Planning from the University of Wisconsin. Her undergraduate degree, from Dartmouth College, is in mathematics. 


Contact information:

Tracy Zafian
Research Fellow
UMass Transportation Center
Civil & Environmental Engineering
214 Marston Hall