Seema D. Iyer, Ph.D.
Associate Director of the Jacob France Institute and Research Associate Professor
- Ph.D., University of Michigan
- M.A., University of Pennsylvania
- B.A., University of Pennsylvania
- Study Abroad, Moscow Energy Institute
Seema D. Iyer, PhD is Director of the Real Estate and Economic Development (REED) program in the Merrick School of Business (MSB). She also is associate director for the Jacob France Institute (JFI) � MSB�s economic research center. She oversees the Baltimore Neighborhood Indicators Alliance at JFI which collects, integrates and disseminates community-based quality of life indicators. BNIA-JFI annually produces the City's Vital Signs report that "takes the pulse" of what's going on in Baltimore's neighborhoods. BNIA-JFI is part of the Urban Institute's National Neighborhood Indicators Partnership of sites that provide longitudinal, community based data for neighborhood planning and advocacy.
Dr. Iyer is a recognized expert on strategic planning in community development; recent projects include the McElderry Park Byrne Criminal Justice Innovation Plan, Regional Housing Plan for the Opportunity Collaborative, an evaluation of Baltimore City�s Vacants to Value program and verification of work for the Baltimore Energy Initiative. Her research focuses on the role of data sharing in collaborative public innovation processes. In 2017, she served as a consultant to the Baltimore Mayor�s Office of Information Technology on the city�s Open Data program.
Academically, Dr. Iyer is the director of the undergraduate program in Real Estate & Economic Development. She teaches courses on real estate principles and local economic development. In 2019, she helped launch UBalt�s Real Estate Fellows Pitch for a Million competition to create pathways for early-stage developers interested in working with stable, middle-market communities in Baltimore. She received the 2020 Dean�s award for Public Service and the 2021 USM Regents Award for Excellence in Public Service.
Prior to joining UB, Dr. Iyer served as Chief of Research & Strategic Planning for Baltimore City�s Planning Department. She holds a Ph.D. in urban and regional planning from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, and has extensive international research experience gained through her study of comprehensive planning strategies in post-socialist countries.
Dr. Iyer was a 2017 Fulbright-Nehru Scholar in Bangalore, India, researching the role of urban governance for metropolitan economic competitiveness. Her blog from the experience is available at blogs.ubalt.edu/siyer.
Her research focuses on the role of data in supporting collaborative, well-informed decision-making for community development. Other areas include the impact of development review on real estate development and energy efficiency measures on housing policy.
Dr. Iyer teaches Real Estate Principles and Introduction to Economic Development
King, L., & Iyer, S. (2021). Monitoring Sustainable Development Goals in North American Cities: Best Practices in Community Planning and Performance Measurement. Springer Nature.
Lafayette, B., Curtis, W., Bradford, D., Iyer, S., & Carayannis, E. (2019). KNOWLEDGE ECONOMIES AND KNOWLEDGE WORK. Emerald Publishing Group.
Refereed Journal Articles
Wasileski, G., Cantora, A., & Iyer, S. (2019). Examining collective efficacy and perceptions of policing in East Baltimore. Crime Prevention and Community Safety.
Non-Refereed Journal Articles
Iyer, S., & Hwang, C. (2018). Cultural Mapping in Baltimore: The Creation of GEOLOOM co>map. Community Scope, Federal Reserve Bank of Richmond. 6(1),
Iyer, S., & Knott, C. (2018). SMART CITIES, CONNECTED COMMUNITIES: Data-Driven Decision Making in West Baltimore for Smart Technology Planning.
Contracts, Grants and Sponsored Research
Frias-Martinez, Vanessa (Principal), Iyer, Seema (Co-Principal), "Smart and Connected Cities--Be an Advocate for pubLic TransportatiOn (BALTO)" Sponsored by National Science Foundation, Federal, $200000. (2020 - 2023).
Gangopadhyay, Aryya (Principal), Roy, Nirmalya (Principal), Iyer, Seema (Co-Principal), "Harnessing the Data Revolution--Data Science Corps" Sponsored by National Science Foundation, $250000. (2020 - 2022).
Iyer, Seema , "Evaluating Open Data Portals for Data Science Corps" Sponsored by South Big Data Hub, Federal, $50000. (2020 - 2021).
Rezaei, Fatemeh (Co-Principal), Conlin, Kristin (Co-Principal), Iyer, Seema (Principal), "Civic Switchboard Field Project Awards - Exploring the University of Baltimore Library�s Baltimore Regional Study Archives and the Baltimore Vital Signs Open Data to Improve Quality of Life in Baltimore Neighborhoods." Sponsored by Institute of Museum and Library Services, The University of Baltimore, $9000. (2019).
Baltimore Sun: Want to reduce crime in Baltimore? Invest in the city
Research in Progress
"Connecting People to Place" (Writing Results)