Labs and Institutes

Labs and Institutes

Our faculty partner with leaders across campus and around the world to develop innovative and interdisciplinary solutions to issues across a range of sectors. 

group on stage

Institute for Data, Democracy, and Politics:  We help the public, journalists, and policymakers understand digital media’s influence on public dialogue and opinion, and develop solutions to disinformation and related ills.



David broniatowski



Decision-Making and Systems Architecture Laboratory, led by Prof. David Broniatowski





Dr. Broniatowski, Director of the Decision Making and Systems Architecture Laboratory, conducts research in decision making under risk, group decision making, the design and analysis of complex systems, and behavioral epidemiology. This research program draws upon a wide range of techniques including formal mathematical modeling, experimental design, automated text analysis and natural language processing, social and technical network analysis, and big data. His work on systematic distortions of public opinion about vaccines on social media by state-sponsored trolls has been widely reported in the academic and popular press. 



royce francis



Strategic [Urban] Ecologies, Engineering, and Decision-Making, led by Prof. Royce Francis 


Dr. Francis’s group conducts research in engineering education and infrastructure management, including sustainability assessment and risk analysis; regulatory risk assessment and policy-focused research, especially for environmental contaminants and infrastructure systems; and, statistical/mathematical modeling approaches to decision support. 



Erica Gralla



Gralla Research Group, led by Prof. Erica Gralla 


The Gralla Research Group studies decision-making in real-world contexts, including disaster response operations and systems engineering and design, using methods from systems engineering, operations research, and management.



John Helveston



Helveston Research Group, led by Prof. John Helveston 


Dr. Helveston’s Research Group studies factors that shape the transition to environmentally sustainable and energy-saving technologies, with an emphasis on vehicle electrification and the U.S.-China climate relationship. 



Joost Santos



Santos Research Group, led by Prof. Joost Santos 


Dr. Santos conducts research in the domains of systems engineering, risk analysis, and economic input-output analysis for managing disaster consequences on interdependent infrastructure networks and economic systems. His team was involved in FEMA’s “Mitigation Saves” project, which has been cited by The US Congress “Promoting Flood Risk Mitigation Act” (H.R.5846). 



Ekundayo Shittu



Systems Modeling Laboratory for Economic Decisions (SysMoLED), led by Prof. Ekundayo Shittu 


SysMoLED conducts research at the interface of systems engineering and engineering management with an emphasis on thematic areas including modeling of systems interdependence, mathematical programming and optimization, technology management, the economics of environmental change and technology policy.



Zoe Szajnfarber



SzajnLab, led by Prof. Zoe Szajnfarber 


The SzajnLab research group studies the design and development of complex systems, primarily in the aerospace and defense sectors. Their work is deeply empirical and considers both the organization and technical system architectures to “design-in” an ability to achieve performance goals across extended and highly uncertain operational lifetimes. Recent projects examine the nature and function of scientific and technical expertise in the design process, particularly in the context of open innovation. 



rene van dorp



Van Dorp Research Group, led by Prof. Rene van Dorp 


General themes have been the development of formal methods integrating expert judgment, distribution theory, available data and Monte Carlo methods/simulation. Applied research domains of special interest include: maritime risk assessment and management, probabilistic risk assessment, reliability analysis, expert judgment elicitation, statistical dependence modeling, and engineering uncertainty analysis. 



Hernan Abeledo



Abeledo Research Group, led by Prof. Hernan Abeledo 


Research interests lie in the development of mathematical models and algorithms for optimization problems encountered in various activities such as health care, logistics, and environmental protection. Recent projects include the optimization of cancer treatment planning, vehicle routing problems, scheduling of health care workers, and reducing rainforest deforestation.  








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