Biosketches of Committee and Staff Members
Robert E. Kraut (Chair) is the Herbert A. Simon Professor of Human-Computer Interaction at Carnegie Mellon University. He has broad interests in the design and social impact of computing and has conducted empirical research on online communities, the social impact of the Internet, the design of information technology for small-group intellectual work, the communication needs of collaborating scientists, the impact of computer networks on organizations, office automation and employment quality, and technology and home-based employment. His research in specific areas examines in detail the challenges groups currently face in performing social tasks, explores designing new technology to meet some of these challenges, and evaluates the usefulness of the new technology. This cycle of needs assessment, technological design, and evaluation involves both scholarly and applied products. His work on video systems for informal communication, technology for allocating human attention, and online communities follows this model. His recent research has focused on the analysis and design of online communities, such as Usenet groups, guilds in multi-player games, and the editors who write Wikipedia. With collaborators, he is writing Designing from Theory: Using the Social Sciences as the Basis for Building Online Communities. He also conducts research on the Internet’s role in the interrelationships among firms and on the dynamics of the family. These networks increase the efficiency with which firms can search for or exchange information with each other, but they also shift the type of information that can be easily exchanged, from personal to quantitative. The research examines how these shifts in
the cost and quality of communication may influence inter-firm loyalties and market relationships. At the level of the family, the research examines how easy access to remote and personalized information sources and communication partners changes the family’s dependence on local resources, among other topics. He wrote a biographical essay, “Re-engineering Social Encounters,” in 2003 for the American Psychological Association. In 1980, his research on the evolution of the human face won a Proxmire Golden Fleece award. His biographical essay, “Why Bowlers Smile,” and Ed Diener’s essay, “Why Robert Kraut Smiles,” describe the legacy of that award. Kraut received his BA from Lehigh University in 1968 and his PhD from Yale University in 1973.
Alessandro Acquisti is an associate professor of information technology and public policy at the Heinz College, Carnegie Mellon University. He is the co-director of the CMU Center for Behavioral Decision Research (CBDR), a member of the Carnegie Mellon Cylab, and a fellow of the Ponemon Institute. His work investigates the economic and social impact of information technologies, and in particular the economics and behavioral economics of privacy and information security, as well as privacy in online social networks. His research has been disseminated through journals (including the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, Marketing Science, Journal of Consumer Research, Marketing Letters, Information Systems Research, IEEE Security & Privacy, Journal of Comparative Economics, Rivista di Politica Economica, and so forth), edited books (Digital Privacy: Theory, Technologies, and Practices [Auerbach, 2007]), book chapters, international conferences, and international keynote addresses. His findings have been featured in media outlets such as NPR, NBC, MSNBC.com, the Washington Post, the New York Times and the New York Times Magazine, the Wall Street Journal, New Scientist, CNN, Fox News, and Bloomberg TV. Acquisti has received national and international awards, including the PET Award for Outstanding Research in Privacy Enhancing Technologies, the IBM Best Academic Privacy Faculty Award, the Heinz College Teaching Excellence Award, and various best paper awards. Two of his manuscripts were selected by the Future of Privacy Forum in their best Privacy Papers for Policy Makers competition. He is and has been a member of the program committees of various international conferences and workshops, including ACM EC, PET, WEIS, ETRICS, WPES, LOCA, QoP, and the Ubicomp Privacy Workshop at Ubicomp. In 2007 he co-chaired the DIMACS Workshop on Information Security Economics and the WEIS Workshop on the Economics of Information Security. In 2008, he co-chaired the first Workshop on Security and Human Behavior with Ross Anderson, Bruce Schneier, and George Loewenstein. His research has been funded by the National Science Foundation, the Humboldt Foundation,
the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, and Microsoft Corporation, as well as the CMU CyLab and the CMU Berkman Fund. Prior to joining CMU, Acquisti was a researcher at Xerox PARC in Palo Alto, California, with Bernardo Huberman and the Internet Ecologies Group (as an intern), and for 2 years at RIACS, NASA Ames Research Center, in Mountain View, California, with Maarten Sierhuis and Bill Clancey (as a visiting student). At RIACS, he worked on agent-based simulations of human-robot interaction aboard the International Space Station. While studying at Berkeley, he co-founded with other fellow students a privacy technology company, PGuardian Technologies. In a previous life, Acquisti worked as a classical music producer and label manager (PPMusic.com) and as a freelance arranger, lyrics writer, and soundtrack composer for theatre, television, and indie cinema productions (including works for BMG Ariola/Universal and RAI 3 National Television), and he raced a Yamaha TZ 125 in the USGPRU national championship. Acquisti has lived and studied in Rome (Laurea, economics, University of Rome), Dublin (M.Litt., economics, Trinity College), London (M.Sc., econometrics and mathematical economics, LSE), and in the San Francisco Bay area, where he worked with John Chuang, Doug Tygar, Florian Zettelmeyer, and Hal Varian and received a master’s and a PhD in information management and systems from the University of California, Berkeley.
Jon M. Kleinberg is a professor in the Department of Computer Science at Cornell University. His research interests center on algorithmic issues at the interface of networks and information, with an emphasis on the social and information networks that underpin the Web and other online media. He is the recipient of an NSF Career Award, an ONR Young Investigator Award, research fellowships from the MacArthur, Packard, and Sloan foundations, teaching awards from the Cornell Engineering College and Computer Science Department, the Rolf Nevanlinna Prize from the International Mathematical Union, and the National Academy of Sciences Award for Initiatives in Research. Kleinberg received a BS in computer science from Cornell University in 1993 and a PhD, also in computer science, from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology in 1996.
Leslie Luke is the group program manager for the County of San Diego’s Office of Emergency Services, where he oversees the Planning Branch, Info/Intel Branch, Recovery Branch, and Support Services. Luke is the recovery coordinator for the County of San Diego and has been the recovery operational area lead for five federally declared disasters and numerous state-declared disasters. He coordinates the Continuity of Community Programs and is a liaison with schools, including child care resource centers; the business sector (leads the ReadySanDiego Business Alliance);
and faith-based initiatives. He oversees the office’s public awareness/ public education initiatives, special projects, and the student worker/ internship/volunteer program. Luke has worked for the County of San Diego for 22 years—in the Office of Emergency Services since 2004; before that in the Public Safety Group, a division of the County’s Chief Administrative Office; and earlier as an investigator for the County Medical Examiner’s Office.
Richard G. Muth, appointed executive director of the Maryland Emergency Management Agency by Governor Martin O’Malley on June 1, 2008, has devoted his entire professional career to safeguarding the lives of Maryland citizens by improving public safety and emergency management practices on the federal, state, and local levels. Muth is a 33-year career and volunteer veteran of the Baltimore County Fire Department. He previously chaired the Governor’s Emergency Management Advisory Council, served as a two-term president of the Maryland Emergency Management Association, and was a committee member and subsequent chairman of the State Emergency Response Commission. In 1993, Muth was appointed as director of the Office of Emergency Preparedness in Baltimore County. In 1998, he served as the on-scene coordinator of Maryland resources while battling massive wildfires in Florida and was awarded a Governor’s Citation for his efforts. That same year, he was honored by the American Red Cross for establishing new protocols between Baltimore County and the Red Cross. In 1999, he was chosen to chair the Baltimore Metro Council Y2K Contingency Planning Group. In 2003, Muth was appointed by Governor Robert Ehrlich to serve as Baltimore County’s director of homeland security and emergency management and oversaw the county’s Hazardous Materials Program, advanced tactical rescue, fire department communications, and the Chemical Stockpile Program. He has chaired the U.S. Defense Department’s Weapons of Mass Destruction Program’s Domestic Preparedness Chemical team and has been recognized for his leadership roles in the aftermath of Hurricane Isabel and as Maryland’s emergency resource coordinator following Hurricane Katrina. As MEMA’s executive director, Muth oversees a staff of 75 people who work closely with state agencies and Maryland’s local jurisdictions, coordinating and planning Maryland’s response to any disaster. When a disaster occurs, whether it is man-made or natural, Muth has the primary responsibility for managing the emergency event and closely advising the governor on preparedness and response strategies. Muth holds a certificate in religious studies from St. Mary’s Seminary and University, Ecumenical Institute of Theology, in Baltimore.
Leysia Palen is an associate professor of computer science at the University of Colorado, Boulder, and a faculty fellow with the Institute for the Alliance of Technology, Learning and Society (ATLAS) and the Institute of Cognitive Science. She is the director of the Connectivity Lab and the NSF-funded Project EPIC: Empowering the Public with Information in Crisis. She examines sociotechnical systems, including coordination in online settings as well as the impacts of social computing in off-line arenas and social structures. Her most recent work is in the area of crisis informatics, although she has worked in aviation, digital privacy behavior, personal information management, mobile technology diffusion, health care, and cultural heritage. Prior to her appointment at Colorado, she completed her PhD at the University of California, Irvine, in information and computer science and her undergraduate education in cognitive science at the University of California, San Diego. In 2006, Palen was awarded an NSF Faculty Early Career Development grant for her “Data in Disaster” proposal to study information dissemination in disaster events. From 2005 to 2006, Palen was a visiting professor at the University of Aarhus, Denmark.
Timothy L. Sellnow is a professor of communication at the University of Kentucky, where he teaches courses in risk and crisis communication. Sellnow’s research focuses on bioterrorism, pre-crisis planning, and communication strategies for crisis management and mitigation. He has conducted funded research for the Department of Homeland Security, the United States Department of Agriculture, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. He has published numerous refereed journal articles on risk and crisis communication and has co-authored four books on risk and crisis communication. His most recent book is Risk Communication: A Message-Centered Approach. He is also past editor of the National Communication Association’s Journal of Applied Communication Research. Sellnow received his PhD from Wayne State University in 1987.
Michele Wood is an assistant professor in the Health Science Department at the California State University, Fullerton, where she teaches courses in statistics and program design and evaluation. She has 20 years of experience designing, implementing, and evaluating interventions. Through her affiliation with the Southern California Injury Prevention Center in the UCLA School of Public Health, she managed a national household preparedness survey conducted as part of the National Center for the Study of Terrorism and Responses to Terrorism (START) Program through the University of Maryland’s Center of Excellence, as well as a California household telephone survey of earthquake preparedness. Wood received her PhD in public health from the Department of Community Health
Sciences at the University of California, Los Angeles; she also holds a master’s degree in community psychology.
Jon Eisenberg is the director of the Computer Science and Telecommunications Board of the National Research Council. He has also been the study director for a diverse body of work, including a series of studies exploring Internet and broadband policy and networking and communications technologies. In 1995-1997 he was an American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) Science, Engineering, and Diplomacy Fellow at the U.S. Agency for International Development, where he worked on technology transfer and information and telecommunications policy issues. He received his PhD in physics from the University of Washington in 1996 and a BS in physics with honors from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst in 1988.
Virginia Bacon Talati is an associate program officer for the Computer Science and Telecommunications Board of the National Research Council. She formerly served as a program associate with the Frontiers of Engineering program at the National Academy of Engineering. Prior to her work at the National Academies, she served as a senior project assistant in education technology at the National School Boards Association. She has a BS in science, technology, and culture from the Georgia Institute of Technology and an MPP from George Mason University, with a focus in science and technology policy.
Eric Whitaker is a senior program assistant at the Computer Science and Telecommunications Board of the National Research Council. Prior to joining CSTB, he was a realtor with Long and Foster Real Estate, Inc., in the Washington, D.C., metropolitan area. Before that, he spent several years with the Public Broadcasting Service in Alexandria, Virginia, as an associate in the Corporate Support Department. He has a BA in communication and theater arts from Hampton University.