Neal Hawkins


Director Research and Development Engineering [ITRNS]

Associate Director for InTrans
Co-Director for the REACTOR Lab
Adjunct Assistant Professor for Civil, Construction and Environmental Engineering


2711 S. Loop Dr. Ste 4700
Ste 4700 Research Park 4
Ames, IA 500108664


Neal Hawkins is a licensed professional engineer with 34 years of experience in traffic engineering, operations, and safety. Throughout his career, he has held various key roles including city traffic engineer, consultant, and, for the past two decades, academic researcher. Neal leads research initiatives across diverse domains such as Traffic Operations, Safety, Managing Disruptions, Weather, Connected Vehicles, Work Zones, Pavement Markings, and Infrastructure.

Neal holds the position of Associate Director for the Institute for Transportation at Iowa State University (InTrans), and he leads numerous research projects as Principal Investigator (PI) or Co-PI. He established and now co-directs the CTRE Real-Time Analytics of Transportation Data (REACTOR) laboratory, which is a collaborative research initiative focused on streaming analytics and decision support tools for public agencies. Additionally, Neal fulfills the role of Iowa DOT Traffic Operations Research Engineer and serves as an Adjunct Assistant Professor for Civil, Construction, and Environmental Engineering at Iowa State University. Neal also co-leads the FHWA Pooled Fund (Aurora), which includes 19 State DOTs focused on Road Weather Information Systems and Operations.