Professor of Agricultural and Consumer Economics
Professor of Regional Economics and Public Policy
Professor of Urban and Regional Planning
Institute of Government and Public Affairs
PhD, University of Pennsylvania, 1975
An innovative teacher, Professor Isserman emphasized learning-by-doing
and quickly took students to the frontiers of planning practice
and thought. He taught master’s courses in urban and regional
analysis, economic impact analysis, and federal program analysis,
as well as a film and writing course on regional cultures and
economies. Their common thread was effective story telling, whether
based on quantitative analyses or personal experiences. Long
a journal editor, he taught two doctoral courses in regional
development that built students’ research and writing
skills. Students rated his courses among the University’s
best for five consecutive years.
His research on federal policy, often conducted with graduate students, contributed
to changes in several federal programs. Awarded funding by the National Science
Foundation since he was in high school, he conducted applied research for the
U.S. Departments of Agriculture, Commerce, Defense, Energy, Housing and Urban
Development, Interior, and Transportation. He was a scholar-in-residence or
fellow at the Census Bureau, Appalachian Regional Commission, and Economic Research
Service, U.S. Department of Agriculture.
Professor Isserman was a pioneer in developing methods for analyzing and forecasting
economic and demographic change. He is listed as one of the 50 faculty members
with the greatest number of citations in urban and regional planning and among
the 100 all-time intellectual leaders of regional science. He received awards
or fellowships from the American Planning Association, American Statistical Association,
National Council for Geographic Education, and Regional Science Association International.
In 2005 he was President of the North American Regional Science Council.
Before rejoining the Illinois faculty, he was Research Director of the Public
Policy Institute of California, Director of the Regional Research Institute of
West Virginia University, and Visiting Professor at the University of California,
Berkeley. He served on the editorial boards of the Journal of the American Planning
Association and Journal of Planning Education and Research, as
well as several regional science journals.
His most recent research had four emphases important to building better places and
stronger communities. He sought to understand why some rural places prosper so
that others can learn from their success. He was trying to improve federal boundary
definitions, such as urban, rural, and region, because they have major funding,
planning, and policy consequences. He was refining techniques to assess
program effectiveness using geographical control group methods and to identify
unstated national urban and rural policies. Finally, he was working on planning
strategies to engage the future more proactively and creatively with an understanding
of economic and demographic possibilities and the lives and priorities of others
in the community.
Isserman, Feser, and Warren. 2009. Why some rural places prosper and others do not. International Regional Science Review 32, 3: 300-42.
Low and Isserman. 2009. Ethanol and the local economy: Industry trends, location
factors, economic impacts, and risks. Economic Development Quarterly 23,1:
Feser and Isserman. 2009. The rural role in national value chains. Regional
Studies 43,1: 89–109.
Isserman. 2007. Getting state rural policy right: Definitions, growth, and program
eligibility. Journal of Regional Analysis and Policy 37,1: 73-79.
Isserman. 2007. Forecasting to learn how the world can work. In Engaging
Our Futures: Forecasts, Scenarios, Plans, and Projects, Lewis D. Hopkins
and Marisa Zapata, eds., ch. 9, pp. 175-197. Cambridge, MA: Lincoln Institute
of Land Policy.
Isserman and Rephann. 2007. The economic effects of the Appalachian Regional
Commission: An empirical assessment of 26 years of regional development planning.
In Regional Planning: Classics in Planning, Vol. 4, Plane, Mann, Button,
and Nijkamp, eds. Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar Publishing; reprinted from Journal
of the American Planning Association, 1995.
Andrew Isserman. 2007. State economic development policy and practice in the
United States. In Regional Planning: Classics in Planning, Vol. 4, Plane,
Mann, Button, and Nijkamp, eds. Cheltenham, UK: Edward Elgar Publishing; reprinted
from International Regional Science Review, 1994.
Isserman and Westervelt. 2006. 1.5 million missing numbers: Overcoming employment
suppression in County Business Patterns data. International Regional Science
Review 29,3 (July).
Isserman. 2005. In the national interest: Defining rural and urban correctly
for research and public policy. International Regional Science Review 28,4: