Mansueto Fellows

Anni Beukes

Anni Beukes

Institute Resident Fellow

Anni’s research interest lies at the nexus of poverty, place, and politics. She focuses on understanding how the processes and technologies of knowledge making, especially the creation and use of digital mapping tools, affect communities and populations living in marginalized neighborhoods internationally. Before joining the Mansueto Institute, Anni spent four years with Slum Dwellers International (SDI) where she was responsible for SDI’s data ecosystem, from community managed data collection, to data platform management, analysis and partnerships. She led SDI’s efforts at the intersection of organized community groups, researchers, technologists and software developers to create and refine tools, methods and practices for community-driven knowledge production. Anni holds degrees in social anthropology from University Stellenbosch in South Africa.

Christof Brandtner

Christof Brandtner

Institute Postdoctoral Fellow & Sociology Postdoctoral Scholar

Christof’s work spans the sociology of cities, environmental and economic sociology, and organizational theory. He examines the causes and consequences of formal organizing—such as planning strategically and evaluating success—in urban governance, sustainability, and civil society. His dissertation developed an organizational theory of why some cities more proactively tackle environmental and social challenges such as climate change than others, highlighting the role of nonprofits and professional associations. Currently, Christof investigates the emergence of city administration in fin de siècle Vienna and the interplay between civil society organizations and urban development. He collaborates on the Civic Life of Cities project, a comparative study of organizational change in the nonprofit sectors of global cities. Christof holds a Ph.D. in Sociology from Stanford and a B.Sc. from the Vienna University of Economics and Business.
 
Kyoung Whan Choe

Kyoung Whan Choe

Institute Postdoctoral Fellow & Psychology Postdoctoral Fellow

Kyoung is a cognitive neuroscientist, who uses simple games, brain imaging, eye-tracking, and machine learning to study how the internal and external environment affect human cognition. He currently focuses on (1) developing new neuro-scientific approaches to study urban issues (e.g., mobile neuro-imaging and eye-tracking) and (2) empowering interdisciplinary research that involves measuring human cognition in urban contexts (e.g., simultaneous eye-tracking and interviewing). Kyoung is a Mansueto Institute Fellow and Postdoctoral Researcher in the University of Chicago Environmental Neuroscience Lab. Kyoung completed his PhD at the Seoul National University Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences in 2015, investigating the role of primary visual cortex in perceptual decision-making.
Patricia Romero-Lankao

Patricia Romero-Lankao

Institute Research Fellow

Pati is an “interdisciplinary sociologist” by training and has worked with scholars and decision makers at local, national and international scales. She is jointly appointed at the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), and has been a research scientist at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR), leading NCAR’s “Urban Futures” initiative. Her research explores the dynamics of urbanization and the systems that shape urban emissions, vulnerabilities and risk. She has also studied why and how particular cities attempt to meet the challenges of reducing emissions while improving their resilience to environmental impacts. She is currently designing urban-scale interdisciplinary studies that inform and are informed by global-scale interdisciplinary research.

Daniel Zünd

Daniel Zünd

Institute Postdoctoral Fellow & Evolution and Ecology Postdoctoral Scholar

Daniel joined the Mansueto Institute for Urban Innovation in 2017 after completing his MSc in Computer Science and doctoral studies in Architecture/Urban Planning from ETH Zurich. He is enthusiastic about researching the fundamental laws of urban systems and their application to the real world. His goal is to find properties that can improve the quality of life in cities with minimal intervention. His previous work focused on the development of tools to support the urban planning and decision-making process, taking non-linear, self-organizing dynamics into account.  The tools have been applied in different large-scale projects in Switzerland and Singapore. Daniel has been a lecturer at ETH Zurich, worked for different companies as a software engineer, and built his own startup company.