Dr. José Holguín-Veras is the William H. Hart Professor, and Director of the Center for Infrastructure, Transportation, and the Environment; and the Volvo Research and Educational Foundations (VREF) Center of Excellence on Sustainable Urban Freight Systems at the Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. José's long term research goals are associated with enhancing the state of the art of transportation modeling and transportation economics, so that a complete picture can be developed on the broad impacts of transportation activity, and the most appropriate ways to model transportation phenomena.
What is clear from this research is these disaster-related buying behaviors create tremendous problems. It increases demand, removes critical supplies from the markets, and makes supplies unavailable to emergency responders. It is impossible for the supply chain to deliver these sharp increases in demand. We are trying to shed light on the direction and permanence of these behavior changes. It is clear to us that these impacts are profound and multifaceted. According to the data, there is a new normal that might emerge that is in between what we would call ‘before’ and ‘during’ the pandemic.2 October 2021