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Joel Batterman

Current Student—Ph.D in Urban and Regional Planning

Joel Batterman

Advisor: Joe Grengs

Areas of Interest: metropolitan governance, regional planning, political economy, urban history, Rust Belt cities

I seek to research the politics of regional planning in Rust Belt cities characterized by racial segregation and central-city economic decline. I believe regional equity is a social and economic imperative, and while the examples of Portland and the Twin Cities may be instructive, Rust Belt citizens and policymakers must better understand the history and dynamics of regional planning in our own context in order to be more effective in the present.

My interests are informed by my work for the Michigan Suburbs Alliance, Metropolitan Organizing Strategy Enabling Strength (MOSES), and, most recently, the Motor City Freedom Riders. I received my B.A. from Reed College and my M.U.P. from the University of Michigan.


  • Batterman, Joel. “Race, Class and Public Transit in the Motor City." Progressive Planning 189 (2011).


  • 2012 - Outstanding Student Project Award, Michigan Association of Planning
  • 2012 -Community Service Award, UM Taubman College of Architecture and Urban Planning