Alireza Ermagun, Ph.D.

Alireza Ermagun

Assistant Professor

Office: 235H Walker Engineering Building
P 662.325.0182
F 662.325.7189


Ph.D., Transportation Systems Engineering, University of Minnesota, 2016
Master of Urban and Regional Planning, University of Minnesota, 2017
M.Sc., Road and Transportation, Amirkabir University of Technology, 2013
B.Sc., Mechanical Engineering, K.N. Toosi University of Technology, 2010

Curriculum Vitae

Biographical Details

Alireza Ermagun is Assistant Professor of Transportation in the Department of Civil and Environmental
Engineering at Mississippi State University. He earned a Ph.D. in Transportation Systems Engineering at
the University of Minnesota in 2016. His dissertation “Network Econometrics and Traffic Flow Analysis,”
introduces distinctive network weight matrices to extract the existing spatial dependency between traffic links
in a complex network. He received a Master in Urban and Regional Planning from the Humphrey School of
Public Affairs at the University of Minnesota in addition to his Master in Road and Transportation.

Ermagun specializes in transportation planning, policy, and practice. His academic research draws on
different disciplines, including engineering, planning, geography, economics, statistics, big data analysis,
psychology, and public health. He shapes his research by questions dealing with operations, planning, and
technology, particularly as they pertain to the incorporation of travel behavior and urban design. A common
theme running through his research activities is to identify novel solutions, develop advanced methods, and
introduce innovative theories to understand travel behavior and human aspects of sustainable and smart
mobility more realistically.

His passion for transportation engineering and planning goes beyond the classroom, and has vaulted him to
the forefront of engineering research. He has published more than 35 referred articles in peer reviewed
journals, and made over 80 technical presentations. His innovative research has resulted in Ermagun
receiving multiple awards including Best Research on Innovation Award from 2018 Transportation Research
Board, 2017 Tiebout Prize in Regional Science, and 2016 John S. Adams Award. His research has had a
pronounced influence on the fields of sustainable transportation, transportation planning and economics,
urban freight, and resilience and efficiency in transportation networks.

Research Interests

  • Smart Cities and Connected Communities
  • Human Mobility and Travel Behavior Modeling
  • Automation, Electrification, and Mobility-as-a-Service
  • Transportation Geography and Network Science
  • Sustainable and Active Transportation
  • Urban Freight and City Logistics

Research Project Opportunities

Ermagun is active in seven projects at different stages of development, which frame the scope of his research:

  • The New Transport Landscape and the Future of Cities: This project plans to explore and
    examine new ways to think about the future of cities, urban forms, and the quality of life through the
    lens of dematerialization, autonomy, and mobility-as-a-service, which syncs with a radically changing
  • Connected and Smart Communities in the Era of Autonomy and Mobility-as-a-Service: This
    research plans for growing mobility demands, new technologies, and changing demographics. This
    research is pioneering in evaluating this new ecosystem of connected travelers and introduces a
    modeling framework to detect connected communities using the similarities and dissimilarities in the
    activity patterns of individuals.
  • Accessibility, Equity, and Justice in Transportation Services: Title VI of the US Civil Rights Act
    of 1964 requires that no federally funded program or activity discriminates against any individual on
    the basis of race, color, or national origin. This research assesses access to transportation services and
    access to public services by transportation systems for all members of disadvantaged groups through
    the lens of equitable and justifiable transportation systems.
  • Links between Built Environment, Travel Behavior, and Health Outcomes: This research is an
    attempt to scrutinize the links between built environment, travel behavior, and health outcomes. This
    is the incorporation of social attributes such as neighborhood social support, family structure,
    individual preferences, and subjective well-being into the analysis, examining how the connections
    between the built environment, travel behavior, and health may be modified by social attributes.
  • New Tools for Modeling Expenditures and Demand of Bicycle and Pedestrian Traffic: This
    research introduces new tools to predict (1) expenditures by local users to support local economic
    development initiatives and assess neighborhood effects of proposals for pedestrian and bicyclist
    facilities development and (2) traffic demand for optimizing investments and managing maintenance
    of systems and facilities.
  • Challenges, Opportunities, and the way forward in Urban Crowd-sourced Shipping: Many cities have begun to address passenger mobility issues by developing mobility visions and strategies for passenger transportation at the city and regional levels. However, comprehensive strategies for (last mile) urban delivery of goods are often lagging. This research examines the concept, models, trends, and challenges of an emerging delivery system, namely crowd-shipping.
  • Network Econometrics and Traffic Flow Analysis: This research deals with fundamental questions associated with the reliability and resilience, an imperative component of sustainability, in transportation networks, and introduces distinctive network weight matrices. The network weight matrices are theoretically defensible in account of acknowledging traffic theory. They capture the competitive and complementary nature of links and embed additional network dynamics such as cost of links and demand configuration.

Teaching Interests

  • Transportation Engineering
  • Urban Transportation Planning
  • Travel Behavior Modeling and Forecasting
  • Transportation Econometrics and Data Analysis
  • Survey and Data Collection Methods
  • Urban Freight and City Logistic
  • Transportation Network Analysis

Recruiting Students

I always seek outstanding Graduate Research Assistants from a variety of backgrounds to join my research
group. Candidates should have strong critical thinking, problem-solving, and outstanding communication
skills and have the desire to work collaboratively in a vibrant work culture. Above all, candidates should have
a desire to look at transportation through a different lens, think out of the box, and be prepared to be
challenged by these new ideas.

Currently, I am recruiting two Ph.D. students in the field of transportation engineering and planning for
Spring 2019 and Fall 2019. The successful applicants will be part of the ground floor of a new research team,
which I will be heading. For more details on the position or the research, please contact me at

Service Activities


  • Reviewed more than 200 articles in the last four years
  • Serve as Research Coordinator and Member of the TRB Committee on Women’s Issues in Transportation (ABE70)
  • Affiliated member of the American Society of Civil Engineers
  • Affiliated member of Transportation Research Board
  • Serve in the Editorial Advisory Board of Transport Findings
  • ASCE ExCEEd Teaching Fellow, American Society of Civil Engineers