Quality of Life Research

Through an ongoing relationship with Rice University’s School of Social Science, the West Houston Association has engaged students in research projects to explore quality of life factors across the greater West Houston region. Over the last three years, WHA has engaged with 37 students through 11 projects. Students work with WHA members and other community partners on semester long projects culminating in presentations to stakeholders.

One series of projects uses an Asset Based Community Development approach to identify ways to improve quality of life in a particular area. These projects are often done in partnership with the local communities based on their interests. So far projects have included focusing on Katy, Cypress, Jersey Village, and Hempstead.

Another other series of projects works to identify metrics which can quantitatively measure quality of life. The hopes behind this line of research is to be able to better model how various forms of development can impact quality of life.

Most recently we have started a new series of projects looking at the ideas of revitalization and redevelopment that examine both specific areas as well as specific types of developments.

These projects provide students with the opportunity to develop skills in project management, research design, data analysis, and communication while learning about factors that continue to quality growth across the greater West Houston region and beyond.

Place Based Research

Students presenting their work to the Hempstead Commerce & Civic Association

Generating Cultural Appeal in Katy, Texas (Fall 2020)
Trisha Gupta, Alicia Wu, Grace Wei

Recommendations for Best Practices to Improve the Music Scene in Cypress, Texas (Spring 2021)
Christi Nguyen, Jennifer Jia, Adam Oscislawski

Hitting it out of the Park: What Baseball Can Do for Jersey Village (Fall 2021)
Brianna Bennion, Pahola Canavati, Ana Hogan

Making Hempstead “Cooler” (Spring 2022)
Isis Burgos, George Huang, Chrystal Hughes, Miguel Luna


Students presenting their research to a group of WHA members and community stakeholders

Quality of Life Metrics

Quantifying the “Cool Factor” of the Greater West Houston Region (Fall 2021)
Naman Dandia, Austin Escamilla, Stephanie Kwak

Quantifying the “Cool Factor” of the Greater West Houston Region – Part 2 (Spring 2022)
Joyce Li, Jordan Ngo, Hitesh Vavilapalli

Identifying what Locations, Attributes, and Factors recognized as “Cool” (Fall 2022)
Ellie Bichelmeyer, Grant Levesque, Cameron Valentine

Understanding the Economic Benefits of Sustainable Infrastructure (Spring 2023)
Ruoqing Wang, Emma Chen, Berkan Gedik, Stuti Jain


Revitalization and Redevelopment

Neighborhood Revitalization: Focus on Alief & Gulfton (Fall 2022)
Andrew Murray, Emery Engling, Jonathan Cheng

Shopping Mall Renewal and Redevelopment (Spring 2023)
Erica Friedman, Bianca Chen, Pablo Solano, Guangshun Chen

Shopping Mall Repurposing (Spring 2023)
Kaylah Cantu, David Davisson, Connor Hughes, Christia Westheimer