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Margaret Dewar

Emerita Professor

Margaret Dewar’s research is in the broad areas of economic development, housing and community development, urban environmental planning, and urban land use. Her current projects address remaking cities following abandonment and strengthening deteriorated neighborhoods. She analyzes how planners can address issues facing cities that have experienced substantial population and employment loss. Her recent book is The City after Abandonment (Philadelphia: University of Pennsylvania Press, 2013), coedited with June Manning Thomas. With Lan Deng, students, and partners in Detroit, she is researching the challenge of preserving Low-Income Housing Tax Credit affordable housing as it reaches the end of the 15 years of investors’ commitment in a context of very weak demand. She is working with June Thomas and Lan Deng on investigating how residents and community-based organizations succeeded in saving some neighborhoods from the disinvestment mortgage foreclosures caused. She is also working with faculty in law, landscape architecture, water ecology, public health, sociology, and civil engineering to study how land use transitions from derelict structure through demolition to green stormwater infrastructure. With Harley Etienne, faculty and students in public health, and the United Community Housing Coalition she is evaluating a Detroit program to sell tax foreclosed houses to their renter occupants. With Rob Goodspeed and legal aid attorneys, she is studying the quality of data on evictions in three Michigan counties and the effect of access to legal aid on eviction prevention. She is completing a project on the everyday remaking of place in the most abandoned areas of cities. Dewar earned a Ph.D. in Urban Studies and Planning from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, a Master of City Planning from Harvard University, and an A.B degree from Wellesley College.

Dewar earned a PhD in urban studies and planning from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, a Master of City Planning from Harvard University, and a Bachelor of Arts from Wellesley College.

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