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Ramayya Krishnan

Ramayya Krishnan


Dean, Heinz College of Information Systems and Public Policy and William W. and Ruth F. Cooper Professor of Management Science and Information Systems

Ramayya Krishnan is the W. W. Cooper and Ruth F. Cooper Professor of Management Science and Information Systems at Heinz College and the Department of Engineering and Public Policy at Carnegie Mellon University.

A faculty member at CMU since 1988, Krishnan was appointed Dean when the Heinz School of Public Policy and Management became the Heinz College of Information Systems and Public Policy in 2008. He was reappointed upon the completion of his first term as Dean in 2014, and reappointed in 2020.

Krishnan was educated at the Indian Institute of Technology and the University of Texas at Austin. He has a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering, a master’s degree in industrial engineering and operations research, and a PhD in management science and information systems.

Krishnan’s research has focused on the development of decision support tools to analyze, interpret, and act on consumer and social behavior in digital and networked platforms. His early work resulted in methods used by government agencies such as the Census Bureau to balance the competing needs to release data to generate economic value while protecting privacy and confidentiality. With the advent of the Internet and e-commerce, he developed novel approaches to gather and analyze data from e-commerce platforms. mobile telephony networks, and peer-to-peer networks. These networks and platforms, when used as testbeds, enabled study of questions related to pricing, consumer search, consumption, and competition in online markets. This work led to actionable policy insights about pricing in online markets as well as approaches to fostering and policing technology-mediated communities that form on mobile and Internet platforms. More recently, he has focused on how sensing and learning are transforming decision making by workers in gig economy platforms. A distinctive feature of his work has been deep partnerships with firms or agencies and pursuit of work that has made foundational contributions to management science and information technology while making a real-world impact.

He has served as Department Editor for Information Systems at Management Science, the premier journal of the Operations Research and Management Science Community. Krishnan is current President of INFORMS and an INFORMS Fellow, and was formerly a member of the Global Agenda Council on Data Driven Development of the World Economic Forum, and president of the INFORMS Information Systems Society as well as the INFORMS Computing Society. He is the recipient of the prestigious Y. Nayuduamma award in 2015 for his contributions to telecommunications management and business technology, the Distinguished Alumnus award from the Indian Institute of Technology (Madras), the Distinguished PhD Alumnus award from the University of Texas, and the Bright Internet Award (Jae Kyu Lee Award) from the Korea Society of Management Information Systems.

Krishnan has extensive experience and expertise in public policy. He serves on the IT and Services Advisory Board chaired by Gov. Tom Wolf of the State of Pennsylvania and is a member of the policy advisory board of the GAO chaired by Gene Dodaro, Comptroller General of the United States. He serves on a select advisory board on technology and economic development to the President of Asian Development Bank. He has served as an Information Technology and Data Science expert member of multiple US State Department Delegations and briefed ICT ministers of ASEAN in October 2014 on big data technology and policy. In May 2019, he served as an invited member of a Royal Society and National Academies convening on Artificial Intelligence and its consequences. In 2020, he is leading a CMU team of faculty experts helping Gov. Wolf and State of Pennsylvania with recovery and reopening policy.

Krishnan’s work on helping create innovative organizations include his service for six years beginning in 2002 as advisor to the Dean of a new School of Information Systems created by the Government of Singapore within Singapore Management University. Drawing on a partnership with Carnegie Mellon, the work helped the school recruit faculty, develop innovative curricula and meta curricula and establish best practices for governance of the School.

Krishnan’s leadership experience includes the founding of the information systems and management program at Carnegie Mellon, and leadership as the first Dean of the Heinz College, a unique college that is home to both the Public Policy school and Information Systems school at Carnegie Mellon. This unique co-location of information technology, public policy, and management brings together a multi-disciplinary faculty consisting of engineers, social scientists, and information technologists dedicated to educating “men and women of intelligent action.” Faculty and students address important issues at the nexus of information technology, policy, and management that arise in domains such as information privacy, evidence-based health care delivery, and urban consumer behavior. The College’s global footprint in the U.S. (Pittsburgh, Los Angeles, and Washington D.C.), in Singapore and in Adelaide, Australia enable these issues to be addressed from a global point of view using international testbeds and via bi-continental educational programs. INFORMS, the Institute for Operations Research and Management Sciences, the leading organization of scholars and practitioners of analytics, recognized Heinz College in 2016 with the UPS George D. Smith Prize for educational excellence. Heinz College is the only education institution that is home to both the Von Neumann Theory Prize and the UPS George D. Smith Prize from INFORMS.

Krishnan led the establishment of funded research centers focused on data-driven decision making in key societal domains including transportation (http://traffic21.heinz.cmu.edu/), smart cities (https://metro21.cmu.edu/), living analytics (http://larc.heinz.cmu.edu), risk and regulatory analytics (https://www.cmu.edu/risk-reg-center/), and AI-led disruption (https://www.cmu.edu/block-center/index.html). He has participated in the World Economic Forum and the Consumer Electronics Show. A summary of his ideaslab presentation is at http://goo.gl/IqkMKR. A recent interview on Big Data with NDTV is at http://goo.gl/WyxEi3.

He has also led a successful fund raising campaign that continues to transform the learning spaces, classrooms, faculty and staff offices, and lab spaces in Hamburg Hall, the home of the Heinz College on the CMU campus.

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