Assistant Professor in Engineering Receives NSF Career Award

May 3, 2021 | News, UToday, Engineering
By Staff

The National Science Foundation awarded Dr. Kevin Xu, assistant professor in electrical engineering and computer science, a five-year, $550,000 award through the Faculty Early Career Development (CAREER) Program.

The CAREER program supports prestigious early-career faculty who have the potential to serve as academic role models in research and education, and to lead advances in the mission of their university.


Xu’s proposal, “Model-based Analysis of Dynamic Networks Using  Continuous-time Network Models,” aims to develop a unified framework for model-based analysis of dynamic networks using continuous-time models.

“I am honored to receive this award from the National Science Foundation and to have the support of my research community,” Xu said. “This award allows me to train several graduate and undergraduate researchers for the next five years. We aim to learn models of how complex networks change over time from a variety of data sources including online social networks.”

In Xu’s project, a framework for modeling and analyzing dynamic networks that change continuously over time will be developed, even though the networks may only be periodically observed.

This framework advances the interdisciplinary field of network science along with the computer and information sciences by developing models to separate the underlying dynamics of the networks from the times at which the networks are observed.

The framework can be applied to analyze dynamic network data in many scientific disciplines and in public health applications, including networks of face-to-face interactions between people, which can help scientists better understand the spread of infectious diseases such as COVID-19.

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