Social Science

Tackling COVID-19

As one of the first research facilities in the U.S. to receive a COVID-19 sample and begin testing for potential therapies, UNC’s response to the threat of the coronavirus was immediate and remains unyielding. While some of our researchers have been studying coronaviruses for years, many others have pivoted the focus of their research, refitted their labs, and are working collaboratively to better execute a holistic response to the pandemic.

Eleftheria “Ria” Kontou

Eleftheria “Ria” Kontou is a postdoctoral research associate in the Department of City and Regional Planning within the UNC College of Arts & Sciences. She uses transportation models to uncover whether ride-sourcing platforms like Uber and Lyft affect city road crashes, injuries, fatalities, and DUI rates to help urban planners identify solutions for safe, efficient mobility.

A Father for Social Science

The Odum Institute, the first social science research center in the world, has trained and supported hundreds of researchers specializing in everything from anthropology to city and regional planning to public health for the past 95 years. And it all exists thanks to the determination of one eccentric man.