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Lindy Institute’s First Fellow

January 21, 2015

Drexel’s Lindy Institute for Urban Innovation has appointed Dr. Kevin Gillen, an economist and the Philadelphia region’s preeminent housing market researcher, as its first senior research fellow. “We are thrilled to welcome Kevin as our inaugural senior research fellow at the Lindy Institute for Urban Innovation.  Kevin brings a wealth of knowledge about housing values in Philadelphia to Lindy and is the leading expert in the field.  His work and expertise blend perfectly with the applied-focus of the institute and we look forward to working with Kevin to expand the influence of his work and that of the institute,” said Lindy Institute Executive Director Harris Steinberg, FAIA.

Prior to his appointment at the Lindy Institute Dr. Gillen was a senior research consultant at the Fels Institute of Government at the University of Pennsylvania. With a background in urban economics and real estate finance, he has advised both public and private sector entities on public policy and the design and implementation of local economic development strategies. Dr. Gillen’s clients have included the Pew Charitable Trusts, the Delaware Valley Regional Planning Commission, the Schuylkill River Development Corporation, the Philadelphia Redevelopment Authority, the Philadelphia Housing Authority, the Philadelphia Tax Reform Commission, the New Jersey Council for Affordable Housing, the Congress for New Urbanism, the Pennsylvania Housing Finance Authority, the Pennsylvania  Horticultural Society, the William Penn Foundation and the U.S. Geological Survey, among others.


Dr. Gillen publishes a quarterly report on housing values in the Philadelphia region, and his research in urban economics has been cited in various policy applications in the Wall Street Journal, New York Times and Philadelphia Inquirer. He has testified multiple times on matters of real estate markets and public policy to Philadelphia City Council, the Pennsylvania State Legislature and the U.S. Congress.

Dr. Gillen also serves as the Chief Economist of Meyers Research LLC, a California-based real estate advisory and analytics firm, where he heads up their East Coast headquarters in Philadelphia.

Launched in 2012, the Lindy Institute’s mission is to serve as a catalyst for problem-solving and dialogue about urban issues around the world. Fostering local partnerships and innovative projects, it engages in public policy initiatives, educational programming and community-based participatory research. In November 2014 the Institute welcomed Harris Steinberg as its inaugural director. Steinberg also serves as Distinguished Teaching Professor in Westphal College’s Architecture & Interiors Department.

Dr. Gillen received his PhD in Applied Economics in 2005 from the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania, where he was the recipient of the U.S. Department of Housing and Urban Development Dissertation Award and the Lincoln Land Institute Dissertation Fellowship. Prior to attending Wharton, Dr. Gillen worked for the Federal Reserve Board of Governors and HUD’s Federal Housing Finance Agency (FHFA). He serves as a board member of the Building Industry Association of Philadelphia, the Pennsylvania Builders’ Association and the Greater Philadelphia Association of Realtors.