Robert Lang’s focuses on suburban studies, world cities, demographic and spatial analysis, housing and the built environment, and metropolitan governance. He is a prolific author on a wide range of topics, and has developed many new urban planning concepts such as “Boomburbs,” “Edgeless Cities,” and “Megapolitan Areas.”
Prior to joining Virginia Tech, Lang was director of urban and metropolitan research at the Fannie Mae Foundation in Washington, DC. In 2007, he was named a senior fellow of the Brookings Institution and invited by Fulbright to become a senior specialist in 2008. He is currently a fellow of the Urban Land Institute. Lang was also recently a planning and development fellow of the Lincoln Institute of Land Policy
Lang’s most recent book is “ Boomburbs: the Rise of America’s Accidental Cities (June Brookings Institution Press, 2007). He is also the author of “Edgeless Cities: Exploring the Elusive Metropolis” (Brookings Institution Press, 2003). He is also coauthor of three edited volumes on the census: Redefining Urban and Suburban America: Evidence from Census 2000, (Brookings Institution Press).
Lang is the editor of the journal “Housing Policy Debate,” and is associate editor for the “Journal of the American Planning Association” He received a PhD in sociology from Rutgers University, where he also taught sociology and urban studies.