Simon McDonnell is a senior policy analyst for the Office of Policy Research at the City University of New York (CUNY). In that role, he explores characteristics that influence retention and graduation rates for baccalaureate and associate level students He graduated with a B.A. in Economics from University College Dublin (UCD) in 2000 and after a period working for Deloitte & Touche in New York, he received an M.Sc. in Environmental Economics and Policy from UCD in 2003. This research investigated the economic and environmental impacts of an environmental levy on plastic shopping bags imposed by the Irish Government. Simon graduated from UCD with a Ph.D. in transport and environmental economics and policy in early 2007. He was in receipt of the Government of Ireland Scholarship from The Irish Research Council of Humanities and Social Sciences (IRCHSS). Simon was also Irish coordinator on a trans-European research project investigating transport sustainability - TranSust.Scan. Before joining the Furman Center, Simon spent a year as a visiting assistant professor with the Urban Planning Program and the Institute of Environmental Science and Policy (IESP) in the University of Illinois at Chicago.