About us

Sustainable Systems Research, LLC advances the goals of climate change mitigation, public health, and social equity by providing on-demand consulting services to our project partners. We conduct objective, high quality analysis grounded in our expertise in engineering, science, planning, policy, and economics.

As a small business with cutting edge expertise, we offer a fresh perspective on traditional and contemporary planning and engineering challenges. We are enthusiastic and committed to producing top quality analysis, holding ourselves to the highest standard. We have the flexibility, breadth, and creativity required to tackle unique problems.

Our team members include:

Deb Niemeier, PhD, PE:
Dr. Deb Niemeier’s research interests span transportation-air quality modeling, energy consumption and land use interactions, sustainability and the project development process for major infrastructure projects. Working with an interdisciplinary research group of graduate students, post-doctoral scholars, and faculty collaborators, she has published more than 110 journal articles and book chapters. Dr. Niemeier is a Professor in the Dept. of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of California, Davis. She joined UC Davis in 1994 as an Assistant Professor after completing her Ph.D. at the University of Washington.

Alex Karner, PhD:
Dr. Karner’s work critically engages with the practice of transportation planning with the goal of achieving progress towards equity and sustainability. To this end he develops innovative methods for analyzing the performance of integrated transportation-land use systems in the areas of civil rights, environmental justice, public health, and climate change. Dr. Karner is an Assistant Professor in the Graduate Program in Community & Regional Planning at The University of Texas at Austin. He has a Bachelor of Applied Science in Civil Engineering from the University of Toronto and a PhD in Civil and Environmental Engineering from UC Davis.

Dana Rowangould, PhD:
Dr. Rowangould’s expertise ranges from policy analysis, energy conservation and efficiency, greenhouse gas emissions inventories and reduction strategies, environmental justice analysis, transportation and land use planning, air quality, and soil and water contamination. Dana has over 15 years of experience providing technical assistance to local governments, nonprofit organizations, university officials, utilities, and private companies. Dana has a BS in Civil and Environmental Engineering from Rice University, an MS in Agricultural and Resource Economics from UC Davis, and a PhD in Ecology with an emphasis on Environmental Policy from UC Davis.

Gregory Rowangould, PhD:
Dr. Rowangould’s research aims to understand how we can create more sustainable cities. He focuses on the role of transportation, and specifically the development of new modeling approaches and closing knowledge gaps that can lead to more informed, and ideally, more sustainable transportation infrastructure and policy decisions. His current research investigates regional scale air quality and public health concerns related to vehicle emissions, the role of pedestrian and bicycle infrastructure in mode choice decisions, the integration of land-use and travel forecasting models, freight transportation planning, and transportation policy analysis. Dr. Rowangould is an Assistant Professor in the Civil Engineering Department at the University of New Mexico. He has a BS in Chemical Engineering and an MS in Resource Economics and Policy from the University of Maine and a PhD in Civil and Environmental Engineering from UC Davis.

Melody Eldridge, BS:
Melody received her B.S. with high honors in Civil Engineering, along with a minor in History, from the University of California, Davis, in 2011. She brings three years of academic transportation, land use, and emissions research experience to the SSR team, as well as experience working in both the private and public sectors. She most recently worked for the City of Davis Community Development and Sustainability Department, assisting in the addition of a Sustainability Element to the City’s General Plan and updating the community-wide greenhouse gas emissions inventory.