Wednesday, August 6, 2014

Farewell Greensboro, Hello Melbourne

Well, it's done.

After eight years blessed with the opportunities to work for the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, work with many students and good colleagues, and make many great friends, I've left to pursue a new opportunity in a new country at the Melbourne Institute of Applied Economic and Social Research at the University of Melbourne. My first day was Monday.

Moves involve some disruption, but this one comes at a good time. My two sons completed great educations in Greensboro's public schools. The oldest has gone on to graduate from UNC Chapel Hill, and the youngest is pursuing a joint degree that will take him to Scotland for the next two years. Neither is home, and so the disruption is mostly limited to my wife and me.

And it's for a tremendous opportunity at a top university in a fantastic city. My research (my actual job) focuses on quantitative analyses of household outcomes, and the Melbourne Institute is home to a tremendous survey that has followed each member of about 7,000 Australian families yearly since 2001 as well as a newer survey that has followed about 2,000 people who were either homeless or at high risk of homelessness semi-annually for three years. These are data resources that just can't be beat, and the chance to work with them and the 40-odd researchers who are part of Institute is exciting. Over the past few years, I've been lucky to be able to collaborate with researchers in the Institute, and now I'll be able to work with them full time.

Melbourne itself is also gorgeous, with wonderful restaurants, theaters, and museums. It's also right up against several great Australian wine regions. When I get a break from work, there is a lot to explore.

I'll miss Greensboro but hope to visit.