Jennifer Clark, Ph.D.

Director of the Center for Urban Innovation; Associate Professor of Public Policy

Member Of:
  • School of Public Policy
  • Center for Urban Innovation
  • Technology Policy and Assessment Center
Office Phone:
Office Location:
DM Smith 218
Jennifer Clark is an Associate Professor at the School of Public Policy and Director of Georgia Tech's Center for Urban Innovation, a GT Interdisciplinary Research Center
Dr. Clark specializes in the theory and analysis of the spatial organization of economic activity and regional economic development policy. Her work contributes to economic geography, public policy, and regional planning.  Her research program and publications outline: 1) the co-location of innovation and production through firm networks (clusters), regional innovation systems, and institutional intermediaries, and 2) the governance (national and regional policies) behind the organization of resilient regional economies and “smart” cities. Dr. Clark has provided expert testimony before the US Congress and policy advice and consulting to the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), the European Commission, the Canadian, UK, and US governments as well as serving on nongovernmental policy commissions and committees. 
Dr. Clark has authored or co-authored three books: Working Regions: Reconnecting Innovation and Production in the Knowledge Economy (2013), Remaking Regional Economies: Power, Labor, and Firm Strategies in the Knowledge Economy (2007) w/ Susan Christopherson, winner of the Best Book Award from the Regional Studies Association in 2009, and the 3rd edition of Basic Methods of Policy Analysis and Planning (2012) w/ Carl Patton and David Sawicki, a widely adopted text in public policy and urban and regional planning courses. In 2015 she co-edited The Handbook of Manufacturing Industries in the World Economy. Her current research projects include a new book: Making Smart Cities: Innovation and the Production of New Urban Knowledge (Columbia University Press). In addition, she has written numerous articles and book chapters.  
Dr. Clark's academic leadership includes serving as the current Chair of the Economic Geography Specialty Group (EGSG) of the American Association of Geographers (AAG), previously serving as the Vice-Chair of EGSG. Dr. Clark is also an editor of the journal, Regional Studies. In 2017, she was elected to the Nominating Committee of the American Association of Geographers. Dr. Clark is also on the editorial review board of two book series. She has given invited plenary and keynote talks at international conferences, presented her work at many international conferences and workshops, and was an honorary senior research fellow at the University of Birmingham, UK from 2013-2016. She earned her Ph.D. from Cornell University, a Master’s degree from the Humphrey School of Public Affairs at the University of Minnesota, and a B.A. from Wesleyan University in Connecticut. Dr. Clark teaches courses on urban and regional economic development theory, analysis, and practice and research design and methods.  
  • PhD, Cornell University
  • MPlan, University of Minnesota
  • BA, Wesleyan University (CT)
Awards and
  • Editor, Regional Studies
  • Chair, Economic Geography Specialty Group, American Association of Geographers
  • Nominating Committee, American Association of Geographers
  • Regional Studies Association Best Book Award, 2009 - Remaking Regional Economies: Power, Labor, and Firm Strategies in the Knowledge Economy. London: Routledge.
  • Honorary Senior Research Fellow, 2013-2016, University of Birmingham, UK
  • Keynote Speaker. Smart Cities and Social Entrepreneurship: Remaking Markets and Manufacturing Open Innovation Spaces. The 19th Uddevalla Symposium on "Geography, Open Innovation, Diversity and Entrepreneurship", London, UK June 2016
  • Department of Foreign Affairs and International Trade, Canada Faculty Research Award, 2007 - 2010, Canadian Studies Program
  • Commissioner, Bipartisan Commission on New Manufacturing, 2013-2014, Miller Center, University of Virginia
  • Engineering, Science & Technology Policy Committee (ESTeP) Member, 2012-2014, International Society for Optics and Photonics (SPIE)
  • Economic Adviser 2012-present, The Essential Economy Council
  • Selected Participant, Science Tour 2016: City of the Future, DAAD: The German Academic Exchange Service or Deutscher Akademischer Austauschdienst
Areas of
  • Industrial Districts
  • Innovation Systems
  • Labor Markets
  • Manufacturing Policy
  • Regional Development