Colleen Hammelman, Assistant Professor in the Department of Geography and Earth Sciences, was awarded a prestigious National Science Foundation Faculty Early Career Development Program (CAREER) Grant to study population change and gentrification in urban foodscapes. Over the next five years, this research will investigate the impact of changing urban economies on landscapes created and utilized by underrepresented populations. Urban landscapes in Charlotte, Atlanta, and Washington, DC, have been receiving new investments via dense, modern, transit-oriented development and an influx of upscale coffee, grocery, and other food retail establishments. These investments have the potential to change settlement and entrepreneurship patterns.
Through the illustrative lens of food systems analysis, this project systematically investigates the ways that restaurants, groceries, food trucks, etc. are changing urban landscapes, where and how new foodscapes are constructed, and the implications of this relocation on cultural, social, and economic outcomes for diverse groups. This longitudinal and comparative project analyzes demographic and property data, as well as data generated via gentrification field surveys, in-depth interviews, and interactive community forums with key stakeholders. It will also integrate pedagogical activities engaging students in landscape surveys and contributing in-depth StoryMaps to a digital database. Research results will make visible the impacts of development decisions on diverse communities while also advancing theory in urban geography and food studies.