President's Letter | January 2024

It is my honor and pleasure to serve as your President in 2024! We have lots of exciting activities planned for 2024, but before I get to those, I am happy to report that, with your support and engagement, we made significant progress in 2023 and have just had a strong start of 2024.

The AREUEA-ASSA Conference in San Antonio was fantastic. Despite the dramatic decline in the overall attendance of the ASSA Conference, AREUEA attendance remained very strong! Our session rooms were full, and our Presidential Luncheon drew over 200 people (compared to ~150 in a normal year), not to mention the two crowded membership receptions. Thanks to our First Vice President Albert Saiz for an outstanding program, and thanks to all who participated in our activities!

During the Presidential Luncheon, Ingrid Gould Ellen gave an insightful presidential address on “Neighborhoods in the 21st Century: What Do We Know, and What Do We Still Have to Learn?” If you missed Ingrid’s address, it will soon be on Early View on the Real Estate Economics website and you can read the full article! We also gave out a number of awards. Please join me in congratulating our award winners: Nancy Wallace for the John M. Quigley Medal; Ed Coulson for the George Bloom Service Award; Carlos Garriga, Pedro Gete, and Athena Tsouderou for the Edwin Mills Best Paper Award; Yang Yang for the Best Referee for Real Estate Economics; Neroli Austin and Lu Liu for the Hoyt Institute Doctoral Dissertation Award; Konhee Chang for the John Clapp Best Poster Award; and Darren Aiello, Jason Kotter, Gregor Schubert, Rene Crespin, and Brian Higgins for the National Conference Best Paper Awards!

Looking back, AREUEA achieved a lot in 2023. In addition to three well-attended conferences (AREUEA-ASSA in New Orleans, AREUEA National in D.C., and AREUEA International in Cambridge, U.K.), our mentoring program, pipeline scholars program, WREN, Policy Forum, Virtual Seminars, social media, PCI effort, and membership campaign all went well! Our Association journal remained strong, both in terms of impact factors and in terms of turnaround time for submissions. Our membership kept growing, and the Association is in great financial health. Please check out our Membership Meeting slides and a pre-Presidential Luncheon slide show I put together for some highlights.

It took a great amount of effort, much behind the scene, to make those achievements. So, please join me in thanking our 2023 President, Ingrid Gould Ellen; our Board of Directors; committee chairs and members; our volunteers; and Travelink for all their great effort!  Special thanks go to our outgoing board members: Abdullah Yavas (president in 2020), Jessie Handbury, Thies Lindenthal, Amanda Ross, and Eva Steiner. We are sorry to see them leave the board, but we are excited to welcome our new board members: Siqi Zheng (Second VP), Benjamin Keys, Jeffrey Lin, Ruchi Singh, and Tingyu Zhou! 

2024 is the 60th Anniversary of AREUEA. I look forward to a great year, in which we work together to move the Association forward and in which everyone of us benefits from a strong AREUEA!

Maintaining the high-quality of our association journal, Real Estate Economics (REE), continues to be our top priority. Our editorial team (Dan McMillen, Lu Han, Alvin Murphy, and Eva Steiner) just started their three-year term on January 1. Our Publications Committee will provide advisory service to the editors, and we welcome your suggestions to make our journal better. Most importantly, please continue to send your best work to REE, cite REE articles, and respond promptly to referee requests!

We will continue to seek new ways to create value for our members. Our mentoring program, pipeline scholars program, WREN, Policy Forum, and Virtual Seminars will continue. In addition, an important project we have for 2024 is to push forward the data initiative we started in 2023. The initiative aims at building up a comprehensive inventory and knowledge base of all the datasets we use in real estate and urban economics research. In our current plan, we will not only provide a list of datasets but also include information about subject matter experts and their insights, including the strengths and limitations of each dataset, how to link it to other datasets, etc. The data initiative will provide important pointers for our members and facilitate research collaboration. Of course, to make it successful, we will rely on everyone’s contributions. In the longer-term, we aim at making an interactive website where members can contribute material and insights similar to Wikipedia.

We will enhance our communication channels. We aim to modernize our website and provide more frequent updates throughout the year. Please visit our AREUEA website often and let us know your suggestions to make it better. We will continue to share news on social media. Please take a moment to follow us on X (formerly Twitter) and LinkedIn.

You probably just saw the National Conference call for papers. Now, let me remind you our conference schedules and submission deadlines:

Thanks to the many of you who volunteered to serve on AREUEA committees this year. We received over 60 responses to our email solicitation. While we will not have room for all of you on our committees this year, we were delighted by your willingness to pitch in, and please keep in mind that we need volunteers to serve as panelists, presenters, discussants, etc. and that attending our conferences and seminars is a way to contribute! Even just telling us how we are doing is a contribution that I appreciate.

Best wishes for 2024, and I look forward to working with you!

Xudong An
President, AREUEA
Vice President, Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia
[email protected]

Previous President Letters

President's Letter | Summer 2023
President's Letter | January 2023
President's Letter | June 2022
President's Letter | January 2022