Anna Joo Kim

Assistant Professor, School of City and Regional Planning
(404) 385-7215

View Kim's C.V.


Anna Joo Kim is an assistant professor of city and regional planning at Georgia Institute of Technology. Her research examines the blurred boundaries between informal and formal jobs for low wage immigrant workers, and how these semi-formal employment arrangements translate into strategies for local economic growth in ethnic neighborhoods. Dr. Kim teaches community and workforce development, planning for immigrant communities, and other courses on social, economic, and environmental justice. Prior to coming to Georgia Tech, she held the Andrew W. Mellon Postdoctoral Fellowship in Environmental Analysis at Pomona College.  Recently Dr. Kim has been awarded the highly competitive GT-FIRE (Transformative Research and Education Award) for her study of workforce development in Atlanta's westside neighborhoods. For her graduate studio on multi-ethnic immigrant communities and immigration policy in Georgia she has also been nominated for the "Faces of Inclusive Excellence" honor at Georgia Tech. Her research and community collaborations have received grant awards from the National Science Foundation,  National Institutes of Health, American Studies Association, Center for Urban Innovation, UC Center for New Racial Studies, UC-CHIS, and the UCLA Labor Center.

Educational Background

2011 - Ph.D. (Urban Planning), University of California, Los Angeles

2006 - M.A. (Ethnic Studies), University of California, San Diego

2004 - B.A. (Women's Studies and History), Claremont McKenna College

Studio Reports

Download the report: This project focused on better understanding the refugee and immigrant communities of Clarkston; In partnership with the City, refugee resettlement agencies, and non-profit organizations, we examined how the city interfaces with “new Americans” across components of basic infrastructure (housing, transportation, land-use, social policy), and how to improve communication between the city and its diverse communities. For more information, contact Professor Kim (

Download the report: Professor Anna Kim's studio research on demographic change and immigration to the Atlanta metro area, "Planning for Immigrant Communities in Norcross". Conducted in partnership with the City of Norcross, the Gwinnett Village Community Improvement District, the Latin American Association, Asian Americans Advancing Justice, and Welcoming America. 

Download the reportProfessor Anna Kim and Professor Chris Burke's studio research on "University-Community Partnerships for Workforce Development", a closer look at discrimination, segregation, and African American unemployment in Atlanta's Historic Westside neighborhoods. Conducted in partnership with the Georgia Tech Westside Communities Alliance, Georgia STAND-UP, and the Atlanta Workforce Development Agency. 


Recent Publications

Paul N. McDaniel, Darlene Xiomara Rodriguez and Anna Joo Kim 2017. "Receptivity and the Welcoming Cities Movement: Advancing a Regional Immigrant Integration Policy Framework in Metropolitan Atlanta, Georgia" Papers in Applied Geography, 3:3-4, 355-379, DOI: 10.1080/23754931.2017.1367957

Kim, A., Levin J. and Botchwey, N. 2017. “Planning with Unauthorized Immigrant Communities: What Can Cities Do?” Journal of Planning Literature. First published date: May-09-2017 10.1177/0885412217698403

Kim, A. and S. Cheng (2016) Forthcoming. "At the Table: Food Justice for Restaurant Workers in Los Angeles" in Politics of Hope: Environmental Justice Grassroots Organizing. Ed Jeffrey Crane and Char Miller. University of Colorado Press. 

Chin, J. Kim, A., Takahashi, L. and D. Weibe. 2015. "Do Sexually Oriented Massage Parlor Businesses Cluster in Neighborhoods?: Spatial Analysis of Indoor Sex Work In LA and Orange Counties.” Public Health Reports. Volume 130, 544-553. 

Kim, A. 2015. “From the Enclave to the City: The Economic Benefits of Immigrant Flexibility”. Local Environment: The International Journal of Justice and Sustainability. Vol 20 (6), 706-727. 

Kim, A. 2014. "The Informal/Formal Racial Divide: “Blended” Labor Market Participation in an Ethnic Enclave" in The Nation and Its Peoples: Citizens, Denizens, Migrants. Edited by h. Winant, J.S.W. Park & S. Gleeson. Routledge Press.

Kim, A. 2014. "Korean American Ethnic Economy" and "Korean American LGBT Movements in Los Angeles and New York". Asian Americans: An Encyclopedia of Social, Cultural, Economic, and Political History. Edited by X. Zhao & E. park. ABC-CLIO.