Ed specializes in housing and local community development planning and policy. His research focuses on issues of race and poverty and how they affect housing policy planning and development. Before coming to the University of Minnesota in 1988, he worked at the mayor's Office of Housing and Economic Development in San Francisco and for several nonprofit community developers in Los Angeles and San Francisco. He has served on the board of directors of nonprofit housing agencies in the Twin Cities, and on several regional commissions related to affordable housing and development. He is the author of New Deal Ruins: Race, Economic Justice, and Public Housing Policy (Cornell University Press, 2013), Clearing the Way: Deconcentrating the Poor in Urban America (2003, Urban Institute Press), Shelter Burden: Local Politics and Progressive Housing Policy (1993, Temple University Press), and co-editor of The New Localism: Comparative Urban Politics in a Global Era (1993, Sage Publications).