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Dr. Chen joined the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering at the University of Virginia in August 2015. Her research focuses on sustainable transportation systems (in particular modeling the impacts of new vehicle technologies systems on traveler behavior and the environment), travel demand modeling, transportation economics, and crash safety. Prior to joining academia, Dr. Chen worked in the consulting industry as a transportation planning engineer and has experience with roadway design, cost estimation, and traffic operation analyses.

Dr. Chen is involved in the Transportation Research Board (TRB), the American Society of Civil Engineers Transportation & Development Institute (ASCE TD&I), Intelligent Transportation Society of America (ITS America), Institute of Transportation Engineers (ITE), and Women’s Transportation Seminar (WTS).


Ph.D., Civil Engineering, University of Texas at Austin, 2015

M.E. Civil Engineering, University of Texas at Arlington, 2008​

B.S. Civil Engineering, Texas A&M University, 2005

"I research sustainable and resilient transportation systems, as I believe access to reliable transport is a key determinant of quality of life."


Research Interests

Sustainable Transportation Systems
Transportation Economics
Transportation Demand Modeling

Selected Publications

“The Effect of Crash Characteristics on Cyclist Injuries: An Analysis of Virginia Automobile-Bicycle Crash Data.” Accident Analysis & Prevention 104: 165-173, 2017. ROBARTES, ERIN AND T. DONNA CHEN
“Operations of a Shared, Autonomous, Electric Vehicle Fleet: Implications of Vehicle & Charging Infrastructure Decisions.” Transportation Research Part A: Policy and Practice 94: 243-254, 2016. CHEN, T. DONNA, KARA M. KOCKELMAN, AND JOSIAH P. HANNA.
“Management of a Shared Autonomous Electric Vehicle Fleet: Implications of Pricing Schemes.” Transportation Research Record 2572: 37-46, 2016. CHEN, T. DONNA AND KARA M. KOCKELMAN.
“Carsharing’s Life-Cycle Impacts on Energy Use and Greenhouse Gas Emissions.” Transportation Research Part D: Transport and Environment 47: 276-284, 2016. CHEN, T. DONNA AND KARA M. KOCKELMAN.
“Where are the Electric Vehicles? A Spatial Model for Vehicle-Choice Count Data.” Journal of Transport Geography 43: 181-188, 2015. CHEN, T. DONNA, YIYI WANG, AND KARA M. KOCKELMAN.

Courses Taught

CE3400: Transportation Infrastructure Design
CE6470: Transportation Economics & Finance


American Society of Civil Engineers Excellence in Civil Engineering Education (ExCEEd) Fellow 2017
National Science Foundation IGERT Fellow 2013-2015
Federal Highway Administration Eisenhower Transportation Fellow 2012-2013

Featured Grants & Projects

"Would You Consider a 'Green' Vehicle? Anticipating Electric Vehicle Adoption Patterns and Emissions Impacts in Virginia with a Spatial Latent Choice Model," Mid-Atlantic Transportation Sustainability Transportation Center.
"Connected Vehicles in Planning Processes," Virginia Department of Transportation.
"I-66 Inside the Beltway Dynamic Tolling Framework Development, Analytical Testing & Support," Virginia Department of Transportation.