Proving My Academic Contributions

While I am not a medieval scribe, I have occasionally written or contributed to a journal article, book chapter, or presented in an academic setting over the past thirty years.  As such, information regarding my “academic writings”, are scattered to the four winds as I never thought I would be working on a Ph.D.  As such, I spent the past few weeks assembling the materials to prove that I am competent and to get my doctoral points approved.

(My home office is not this organized!)

To do this, I started organizing my “academic writings”.  Initially, I turned to Google Scholar, which searched a lot of publications, many of which I would not call scholarly, such as my writings while at Institute for Trade and Transportation Studies, such as blog posts, working papers, newsletters, and general reports.  Most of my articles and academic writings were posted correctly.

I then discovered ResearchGate and created a similar account.  Many of the same listings were there, in addition to a few more.  (Again, there is no distinction between peer-reviewed articles, presentations, working papers, etc., so these are not necessarily academic writings.  I created a Scopus Account, which did focus on academic writing; however, I had to request Scopus to correctly link some articles to my account, which they did when asked.

Finally, I set up an ORCID account, documenting my academic writing in yet another format.  I did link this to my Antwerp Student account.  (I also need to make sure ORCID is linked to the review work at TRB, something I failed to do in the past.  Also, I probably should be reviewing more peer reviewed documents, as these are a great source of understanding current thinking on a topic!)

What did I learn in the process?  Not all things are considered academic, nor are all things captured accurately. (And there are a few Bruce Lamberts who have published academic articles!) Some papers have been lost to the sands of time, but it is nice to see that others remember some of what one accomplished over the years.  

My First Three Albums

I have always been surrounded by music.  My father had an 8 track tape player in his truck. He would alternate between the radio and a mix of older country, 1950’s rock, and “easy listening”.  (KTDY in New Iberia still played easy listening songs/oldies on the radio, while KSMB was an album oriented rock station.  My dad never listened to KSMB.) 

I received a record player/8track tape player/radio  for either a Christmas or my birthday (when you are born in early January, the dates run together). Although the unit remained in the living room, it was several months before I purchased my first three albums:

At the time,  I had no idea what an album was, but I know I wanted a song off each album: Such as “Moving Out (Anthony’s Song)“, “Point of No Return“, and Come Sailing Away.  (I felt  buying 45’s was a waste of time, as you played one song and then had to do something with the record!)

Each song spoke to me differently at that age.  I loved the car squealing on “moving out” but also the sentimentality of “Just the Way You Are” (although I have no idea what love really meant at the time), the idea of going to the end of the world as an explorer, although over the years, I found only “Come Sail Away” still emotionally resonates with me due to its nostalgic line of “Childhood Friends, and the Dreams We had”.   Maybe that is because I remember talking music to my schoolmates at St. Cecilia in Broussard. 

Music was (and I am sure remains) a hot topic in middle school.  There were a few people who were clearly in the “Kiss” are musical gods camp, and others in the general rock (we all hated disco but listened to KSMB, so we were all rockers!)  And what better time to learn about music, as 1977 remains one of the seminar years in pop music, but you don’t see the transitions when they are gradually unfolding around you!

Over the next ten years, I accumulated a lot of albums, mostly for my own listening pleasure,  although I did DJ parties in high school and college.  Eventually that came to an end, due to marriage and kids, but I count that as a small loss.

I still enjoy listening to albums versus singles.  Although this is mostly on Spotify, the music experience, while still rewarding, does not require getting up to turn the album over! 

And yes, I still play my first three “loves” on a regular basis.




A Brief Thought About How Decarbonization Efforts Must Address the Principal-Agent Problem

There are many entities, in both the public and private sectors, pressing for decarbonization goals to address global warming. However, these groups, pushing for change through the creation and adoption of innovative technologies, operating systems, education, etc., must balance that against the current inertia of other activities. This creates the Principal-Agent Problem, where differences in priorities may influence the development of these technologies and timelines for adoption and deployment.

The principal-agent problem assumes the following: The principal, or the person responsible for paying an agent, will want the agent to achieve a specific goal or outcome at the lowest cost to himself. While working to achieve that goal, the agent may act in a rent-seeking manner that may not be in the principal’s best interest.  For example, the principal pays a sales agent, but the sales agent may seek payment for additional expenses.  Decarbonization goals, while laudable, require firms to examine their operations. However, they have to do so through the following categories:

  • Existing assets/systems that are internal to the agent.  These projects, already constructed, require maintenance, etc., but also budgetary commitments to remain viable.
  • Currently developed projects undertaken by the agent.  These projects may have funding or preengineer work performed, but are actively in development.  These  projects also can tie up short term capital.
  • Planning Process to support the agent’s long-term goals  These are often of a longer term manner, and must operate within the current permitting/regulatory activities.


The role of decarbonization does not necessarily fit into these internal processes, but firms will seek to engage in this effort through the use of their existing organizational structure.
As such, planners who are conformable with the “status quo” may not be willing to learn new tasks to meet decarbonization goals. Construction teams will build to the contract, and in some cases, these plans cannot adopt these innovative technologies. Finally, there remains the ongoing asset management needs to service existing programs.

As new funds and programs are proposed, there could be disincentives between principals and the agents responsible for adopting the innovation.  The question becomes, “can we manage our expectations without pointing the finger at others”?


Reflections on Visiting the Panama Canal in 2009

In 2009, the Institute for Trade and Transportation Studies joined a mission sponsored by the Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway to visit the Panama Canal. The mission, with a variety of public and private participants from the States of Alabama, Mississippi, Kentucky, and Tennessee,  received two excellent briefings on Panama and the Canal. Mr. Rodolfo R. Sabonge, Office of Market Research and Analysis Vice-President from the Panama Canal Authority, outlined the traffic patterns through the Canal and the basic expansion plans. Mr. David Hunt, with the American Chamber of Commerce, discussed how to do business in Panama and the Panamanian economy. The following day, the group toured the Miraflores Locks. On Saturday, the group transited the Canal from the Pacific to the Atlantic. While a long day, it was worth the trip!! 

Over the ensuring years, ITTS sponsored a second trip to Panama with other ITTS member states and prepared additional presentations and reports on the Canal.  However, I have not been back since the Canal was opened.  I think it’s time for a return visit to tour the finished locks!

Versatility Matters – Especially On the Farm

Almost ten years ago, I started raising my poultry, which led to selling poultry at a farmers’ market and a few restaurants. While I don’t sell poultry anymore, I still enjoy raising animals on my farm. But one has to consider some things when raising poultry or any farm animals: they need food, shelter, and water. (Sounds like Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, but I never asked my animals how they are doing on their road to self-actualization. But they seem content.)

Recognizing I needed shelters, I built several hoop pens based on the following design posted at a University of Kentucky website about poultry housing. These things work great! And they still work great, even after all these years of being out in the elements. I did not say they had to look good!

8 years later. Still going strong!

At various times I have raised squabs, brooded countless goslings, ducklings, chickens, etc., in addition to serving as a sick ward for sheep and poultry. The hoop pens have been temporary storage for feed and farm supplies, including a greenhouse, at one time. So, this simple design has become a mainstay on the property due to its versatility.

Biddies in a Hoop Pen. I feel raising young poultry in the hoop pen leads them to be more active foraging as adults, with less cleaning, as I move the pen every few days.

Oswego New York – A Few Photos from My Walkabout

Just a few shots from walking around the Oswego New York waterfront over the New Year’s Eve weekend.

Dewatering the lock…always amazed how a young New York State recognized locks and dams were critical for its economic prosperity…

I did the first-day hike at Fort Ontario and got some great shots of the jetties while learning about the Fort’s history. I toured the historic graveyard, which turned the hike, despite the cold, was a pleasant afternoon. As I have learned over my travels, every place has a story to tell. I just need to stop to hear the whispers of its past.

The Fort’s Role in U.S. History
I built up an appetite after the hike. Good food always tastes better with great friends.

Riderless Bicycles

When I was a kid my bike was a magic pass to go anywhere, such as a friend’s house or to get snacks at the gas station. While I don’t remember not riding without training wheels, I am sure I learned how to ride when we lived on Thomas Nolan. And everyone knows the hardest thing about riding a bicycle is balancing the weight for the bicycle to remain centered.

When I say this video, I laughed about the prospect of a bicycle simply rolling down the road. What good would that be? Then I started thinking about my last visit to Antwerp when I saw the Velo bicycle stations all over town (

While the bikes were ridden during the day, the bicycles were picked up and repositioned at night. If only the bicycles could reposition themselves, Velo would save the costs of crews going out to return these bikes to pickup centers. If only someone invited a riderless bicycle…

Well there are riderless bicycles now!

On a future visit, I may see empty bicycles shuffling between stations, or I call one to meet me at my hotel door. Once again, technology may transform what was once a parody into the commonplace.

New Year’s Resolutions – You Can’t Do It Alone

It’s already January 3.

For most people, their resolutions have slipped by the wayside of work, obligations, or simply not wanting the outcome sufficient to invest in that action.  In many ways, we make the same resolutions year after year.  (The following is echoed below.)  I am sure most people have the same goal in 2021, as they did in 2020, etc…

As with most people, I have lot to do in 2022.  The question is not what is the priority, but rather, what will I do with my time.  The following quote from Edger Allen Poe from Zen Pencils serves as a harsh reminder that time wants for no man.

The Guardian listed some ways to improve here.  The focus is on gradual change, etc., but if I really want to change, I must think differently about who I am at my core.  The art of learning to self talk can be important here, asking yourself, “What Would Batman, Jesus, etc., Do” can create some distancing to help me sometimes rethink on the task at hand.

As I sit with the open calendar before me, the answer to what will happen in 2022 will be the same as what happened in previous years.  I will meet with Triumph and Disaster.  The shape of the new year will depend on up my commitment to whittling away at the stone that entraps me.

But this too is limiting.  I can no more carve myself from stone without the assistance from others, and in fact, I can not more be better than what I can be organically if I do not rely on others.  In anticipation of my (our) success(es) at the end of 2022, I want to thank you for your assistance, friendship, and support going forward.