Invited Seminar: Steering and Controlling Systems of Interdependent Networks

Date and Location

Nov 09, 2015 - 3:30pm
Engineering Sciences Building (ESB) 1001


Professor Raissa D’Souza
Depts. of Mechanical Engineering & Computer Science
University of California, Davis


Networks are at the core of modern society, spanning physical, biological and social systems. Each distinct network is typically a complex system, shaped by the collective action of individual agents and displaying emergent behaviors. Moreover, collections of these complex networks often interact and depend upon one another, which can lead to unanticipated consequences such as cascading failures and novel phase transitions. Simple mathematical models of networks can provide important insights into such phenomena. Here we will cover several such models, beginning with control of phase transitions in an individual network then moving on to modeling phenomena in coupled networks, including cascading failures and optimal interdependence.

Biography: Raissa is Professor of Computer Science and of Mechanical Engineering at the University of California, Davis, as well as an External Professor at the Santa Fe Institute. She received a PhD in Statistical Physics from MIT in 1999, then was a postdoctoral fellow, first in Fundamental Mathematics and Theoretical Physics at Bell Laboratories, and then in the Theory Group at Microsoft Research.  Her interdisciplinary work on network theory spans the fields of statistical physics, theoretical computer science and applied math, and has appeared in journals such as Science, PNAS, and Physical Review Letters. She serves on the editorial board of numerous international mathematics and physics journals, is a member of the World Economic Forum's Global Agenda Council on Complex Systems, and is currently the President of the Network Science Society.  Ror more about her research visit her website at

Host: Prof. Francesco Bullo, Chair, Department of Mechanical Engineering

Download a PDF flier for Prof. D'Souza's seminar.