Ohio State Center for Real Estate 2016 Conference

Driverless cars, the future of cities and the relationship between universities and the cities they call home were just a few of the forward-leaning topics of discussion at the second annual Real Estate Conference.

Hosted by The Ohio State University Center for Real Estate, the conference brought together real estate leaders, academics and students to examine the near and distant future of the industry.

“In much the same way technology has far-reaching implications for a number of industries, real estate is no different,” said Itzhak Ben-David, the Center’s academic director and the Klatskin Chair in Finance and Real Estate at Fisher.

Two leading voices on the issue of driverless cars shared their thoughts on the effects and challenges of embracing such technology on a mass scale. Barrie Kirk, executive director of the Canadian Automated Vehicles Centre of Excellence, provided insights into what the next 15 years might hold for autonomous vehicles and their impact on citizens, businesses and governments.

Brooks Rainwater, senior executive and director of the Center for City Solutions at The National League of Cities, explored the challenges associated with embracing driverless cars and the considerations on city and transportation planning.

“This conference was a great opportunity to examine the potential for technology to work in tandem with the real estate industry,” Ben-David said. “As an academic center, we are dedicated to providing our members and the entire real estate community with the very best in thought leadership and insights into innovation that can—and already is—impacting real estate.”

Other speakers included Justin Birru, assistant professor of finance at Fisher, who discussed how behavioral economics and psychology can affect real estate investment decision-making. Jeffrey Fisher, professor emeritus at Indiana University, spoke on the current state of the real estate market.

Graham Wyatt, a partner at Robert A.M. Stern Architects, delivered the event’s keynote on the strategy behind reconnecting universities with the cities in which they are located. Wyatt drew on his vast design and planning experience which has included buildings at educational institutions such as Harvard, Yale, the University of Virginia; the Comcast Center in Philadelphia; Gap Inc.’s offices in San Francisco; and the City of New Albany.

“Mr. Wyatt’s insights into the relationship between an educational institution and its surroundings was especially applicable to many of us as members of the Ohio State community—the flagship university in Ohio and one committed to its land grant mission,” Ben-David said. “This was a tremendous opportunity to hear from one of the leaders in architecture and urban planning and to explore how universities can and should view their place within a larger community.”

Itzhak (Zahi) Ben-David Professor of Finance, Neil Klatskin Chair in Finance and Real Estate, Academic Director of the OSU Center for Real Estate
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Justin Birru Associate Professor of Finance
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