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      What's New

      Important Dates

      Online Submission


      Special Session



      Program Committee

      Program Schedule

      Keynote Speeches

      Panel with Program Directors  


      Doctoral Symposium


      Accepted Papers


      Student Travel Award

      Visa to USA

      Travel Information

      About Washington DC


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Panel with Program Directors:

Big Data Challenges and Opportunities





Chair :  Prof. Xiaohua Tony Hu

1)       Dr. Chaitanya Baru (NSF)

2)       Dr. Yuan Liu (NIH)

3)       Dr. David Kuehn (DoT)

4)       Dr.Tsengdar Lee (NASA)

5)       Dr. Sudarsan  Rachuri   (NIST)

6)       Mr. Matti Vakkuri (DIGILE)



Bios of Panelists:


Dr. Chaitanya Baru (NSF)

Chaitan Baru currently serves as Senior Advisor for Data Science in the CISE Directorate at the National Science Foundation. He is on assignment from the San Diego Supercomputer Center, UC San Diego, where he is Distinguished Scientist and Associate Director of Data Initiatives. He has served in leadership positions in a number of national-scale cyberinfrastructure R&D initiatives across a wide range of science and engineering disciplines including, earth science, ecology, earthquake engineering, and biomedical informatics. In 2012, he initiated an industry-academia effort to define big data benchmarks via the Workshops for Big Data Benchmarking (WBDB). This has resulted in the recent formation of the SPEC Research Group on Big Data Benchmarking, which he co-chairs. He is co-editor of the Lecture Notes in Computer Science series entitled, Specifying Big Data Benchmarks, published by Springer Verlag. He co-chairs the National Institute for Standards and Technology’s (NIST) Public Working Group on Big Data. He is a member of the teaching faculty for the Masters in Advanced Studies program in Data Science and Engineering (MAS-DSE) in the Computer Science Department at UC San Diego.

Baru has co-edited the book, Geoinformatics: Cyberinfrastructure for the Solid Earth Sciences with Prof. Randy Keller, University of Oklahoma, published by Cambridge University Press (ISBN: 9780521897150).

Baru has a B.Tech (Electronics Engineering) from IIT Madras and an M.E. and Ph.D. (Electrical Engineering) from the University of Florida.

This panelist speech slide can be downloaded at here.


Dr. Yuan Liu (NIH)

Dr. Yuan Liu is the Chief of the Office of International Activities, and the Director of Computational Neuroscience and Neuroinformatics Program at the National Institute of Neurological Disorders and Stroke (NINDS), National Institutes of Health (NIH).

Dr. Liu leads the NINDS’ international activities, which focus on fostering international and global health research, training and collaborations. She also oversees the computational neuroscience and neuroinformatics program, which promotes collaborations between experimental, computational and informatics neuroscientists to advance the understanding of nervous system structure and function, and the mechanisms underlying nervous system disorders.

In addition, Dr. Liu has been serving as the NINDS representative on over 30 international, interagency and trans-NIH committees and working groups that develop international and computational biology and bioinformatics related programs, including many inter-agency initiatives (e.g., CRCNS, IMAG, and BigData), trans-NIH programs (e.g., Roadmap, BISTI, and BD2K), and Blueprint for Neuroscience activities (e.g., NIF, NITRC and Human Connectome Project). For her achievement and contribution, she received several NIH Director’s Awards and NIH Blueprint Neuroscience Research Directors Awards.

Dr. Liu received her bachelors and masters degrees in neurophysiology from Peking University in P.R. China, and her Ph.D. in neuroscience, under the mentorship of Prof. John G. Nicholls, from the Biozentrum, Universität Basel in Switzerland. Her research career was focused on the area of neurophysiology at single channel, synaptic and systems levels. Between 1999 and 2004, she managed the research portfolio centered on channels, synapses and circuit grants at NINDS. Prior to joining the NINDS, Dr. Liu was Program Director for Basic Neuroscience Research.

This panelist speech slide can be downloaded at here.



Dr. David Kuehn (DoT)

David Kuehn is the Program Manager for the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) Exploratory Advanced Research Program. The Program Manager serves as the senior advisor to agency leadership on the communication and coordination of exploratory advanced research activities and fosters partnerships with other Federal agencies, national scientific societies and organizations, and the academic community in support of the Program.  The program focuses on longer term and higher risk research with the potential for transformational improvements to the transportation system.  David entered federal service as a Presidential Management Fellow.  Before working at the federal level, David worked in local government and as a consultant in southern California.  He holds a Masters of Public Administration from the University of Southern California and a B.A from the University of California, Irvine and is a member of the American Institute of Certified Planners (AICP).

This panelist speech slide can be downloaded at here.



Dr.Tsengdar Lee (NASA)

Dr. Tsengdar Lee manages the High-End Computing Program from NASA Headquarters. He is responsible for maintaining the high-end computing capability to support the agency's aeronautics research, human exploration, scientific discovery, and space operations missions. Lee is also the manager of the NASA Weather Data Analysis Program, focusing on the transition of research results into the operational forecast centers and the acceleration of operational use of research data. Two major activities include the multi-agency Joint Center for Satellite Data Assimilation and the Short-term Prediction Research and Transition Center.

In 2011, Lee served as Acting Chief Technology Officer (CTO) for Information Technology (IT) in the NASA Office of the Chief Information Officer. In this capacity, Lee funded agency-wide IT research and advanced prototyping and created NASA's IT Labs. He also chaired the CTO-IT Council.Lee joined NASA in 2001 as the High-End Computing Program Manager for the Earth Science Enterprise. He was responsible for the Earth science computational modeling needs, primarily focusing on weather and climate modeling. Between 2002 and 2006, Lee also managed the Earth Science Global Modeling Program. He funded research efforts to study the global climate change, weather forecasting, and hurricane prediction problems.Prior to 2001, Lee held positions as Senior Technical Advisor with Northrop Grumman Information Technology and Senior Staff Engineer with Litton PRC. He worked on the Advanced Weather Information Processing System (AWIPS) project for the National Weather Service. He was responsible for the rapid development, integration, and commercialization of the AWIPS client-server system. Lee also was a principal engineer on the effort to develop the AWIPS network monitoring and control system.

He was a Research Scientist and worked on the dispersion problem of bio-chemical agents during his short tenure with the Science Applications International Corporation between 1994 and 1996. Lee received two graduate degrees from Colorado State University, a PhD in Atmospheric Science in 1992 and an MS in Civil Engineering in 1988. Trained as a short-term weather modeler, his work focused on the integration of weather and ancillary geographical information data into weather models to produce reliable forecasts. His research pioneered the modeling of land surface hydrology’s impact on weather forecasting.

This panelist speech slide can be downloaded at here.



Dr. Sudarsan  Rachuri   (NIST)

Dr. Sudarsan Rachuri is the Program Manager for Smart Manufacturing Design and Analysis program at NIST. Prior to joining NIST, he was a research professor at George Washington University. His primary research objectives are to develop and transfer knowledge to industry about information models for sustainable and smart manufacturing, green products, big data analytics for manufacturing, system level analysis, and knowledge representation.  Specific focus is on identifying integration and technology issues that promote industry acceptance of information models, and standards, that will enable designers to develop products that are sustainable and manufactured using smart technologies in a distributed and collaborative environment. Dr. Rachuri's primary areas of interest are smart and sustainable manufacturing, scientific computing, CAD/CAM/CAE, design for Sustainability, data analytics, object-oriented modeling, and ontology.

Dr. Rachuri is an ASME Fellow, having been elected in 2012 for his significant contributions in the areas of information and semantic modeling of product life cycle management, and the application of measurement science for sustainable manufacturing.

This panelist speech slide can be downloaded at here.



Mr. Matti Vakkuri (DIGILE)

Mr. Matti Vakkuri, Program Director, Big Data, Tieto & Focus Area Director, DIGILE’s Data-to-Intelligence Programme

Mr. Matti Vakkuri graduated from Finnish Military Academy in 1993. He has  20 years of experience from areas of management, leadership, business development, security, quality, human resource management, project management, program management, offering development , crisis management and consulting in both governmental and private sector.

In his current position in Tieto his tasks are to enable the power of Big Data and its enormous impact on the customers’ businesses, develop and ramp-up the offering, sales and delivery capabilities, build competences in Big Data, Hadoop and data sciences, assure cross-organizational collaboration and network, evaluate partners, suppliers and competitors in Big Data market. Tasks include advocating and lobbying Big Data’s possibilities internally and externally in business operations, research and product development.  Since April 2013, in addition to his job in Tieto he has held a part-time occupation of Focus Area Director (the Head of the Program) for Digile’s Data to Intelligence research program. The program is focused on Big Data, data reserves and user-centric service development. The aim of the program is together with companies and research institutions to develop intelligent tools and methods for managing, refining and utilizing diverse data. The results of the program enable innovative business models and services. One of the program’s targets is to develop methods for Big Data analytics that handle complexity through fusion of heterogeneous data sources, and use adaptivity, context-sensitivity, scalability, and user relevance as the main methodological objectives.

From January, 2014 he has been a full member of Finland’s ministry of Transportation and communications Big Data working group which has built and written Finland’s national Big Data strategy draft in June, 2014.

His motto is "Management by leadership".

This panelist speech slide can be downloaded at here.




Last update: 13 Nov. 2014