Speaker's Bureau


The faculty members listed on this web page are available during the 2017-2018 academic year to give an informative presentation about their research at a regional college or university.  Although other arrangements can be made, this would typically be a one hour talk delivered at a regularly scheduled departmental colloquium or seminar.  Names may be added or deleted as new speakers become available or currently listed speakers accept invitations.


Use the email address given to contact and make plans with anyone whose name appears on the list below. The availability of any individual is subject to their teaching schedule and other professional or personal commitments.


Maria Gini


Maria Gini is a Professor in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at the University of Minnesota. She specializes in Artificial Intelligence and robotics, in particular robot planning, navigation in unknown environments, coordinated behaviors of autonomous robots, search and rescue applications, and economic agents.

She is a Fellow of the Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence, a Distinguished Scientist of the Association for Computing Machinery, a Distinguished Professor of the College of Science and Engineering at the University of Minnesota, and the winner of numerous awards at the University of Minnesota, including the Distinguished Women Scholars Award, the Morse-Alumni Award for Outstanding Contributions to Undergraduate Education, and the Graduate and Professional Distinguished Teaching Award.

Mats Heimdahl


Professor Mats Heimdahl is the Head of the Department of Computer Science and Engineering. He specializes in software engineering, safety critical systems, regulated software development, software requirements, validation and verification, and software testing.

Heimdahl is the recipient of the National Science Foundation's CAREER award, a McKnight Land-Grant Professorship and the McKnight Presidential Fellow award at the University of Minnesota, and the University of Minnesota Award for Outstanding Contributions to Post-Baccalaureate, Graduate, and Professional Education.

Nick Hopper


Nicholas Hopper is a Professor of Computer Science & Engineering at the University of Minnesota. He received a B.A.  from the University of Minnesota, Morris in 1999 and Ph.D. in Computer Science from Carnegie Mellon University in 2004. He received the NSF CAREER award in 2006, the Institute of Technology Student Board "Professor of the Year" award in 2007, and the McKnight Land-Grant Professor award in 2008. His work on Internet privacy and security has been cited over 4000 times, and has received "best student paper" awards at ACM CCS and PETS as well as Honorable Mention for the 2013 PET Award.  He has served as the Program Chair for PETS 2010, PETS 2011, and WPES 2015; as an Associate Editor for ACM TISSEC from 2011-2014; on the PoPETS Editorial Board from 2014-2016 and the PoPETS Editorial Advisory Board from 2014-2016; on the PET Award Selection Committee in 2009, 2010, and 2012-2014; as the PET Award Chair in 2015 and 2016; and on program committees for several cryptography and security venues, including IEEE S&P, NDSS, CCS, CRYPTO, TCC, PETS, WPES, Financial Crypto, and WWW.

Victoria Interrante


Professor Interrante's research focuses on applying insights from visual perception and cognition to the development of more effective virtual reality experiences and the more effective communication of complex information through visual imagery. In this work, she has enjoyed collaborating with colleagues in a wide variety of fields, from architectural design and neuropsychology to engineering and medicine. Dr. Interrante is a recipient of the 1999 Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers, "the highest honor bestowed by the U.S. government on outstanding scientists and engineers beginning their independent careers", and a 2001-2003 McKnight Land-Grant Professorship from the University of Minnesota. She is active in her professional community as the co-Editor-in-Chief of the ACM Transactions on Applied Perception and a member of the Steering Committee for the IEEE Virtual Reality Conference  among other duties.  At the University of Minnesota, Dr. Interrante is currently serving as the Director of the Center for Cognitive Sciences and as a member of the Advisory Board for the Graduate Program in Human Factors. She also served in 2013-2014 as co-chair of the Women's Faculty Cabinet, providing consultation and advice to the Vice Provost for Faculty and Academic Affairs to improve and enrich the academic and professional environments for women faculty at the University of Minnesota.

Daniel F. Keefe


Dan Keefe is an Associate Professor in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at the University of Minnesota.  His research centers on scientific data visualization and interactive computer graphics.  Keefe’s recent awards include the National Science Foundation CAREER award; the University of Minnesota Guillermo E. Borja Award for research and scholarly accomplishments; the University of Minnesota McKnight Land-Grant Professorship; and the 3M Non-tenured Faculty Award.  He has received multiple best paper and best panel awards at top international conferences, such as IEEE VIS and ACM Interactive 3D Graphics. His research has been funded by the National Science Foundation, the National Institutes of Health, the National Academies Keck Futures Initiative, and industry sponsors.  In addition to his work in computer science, Keefe is also an accomplished artist and has published and exhibited work in top international venues for digital art.  Before joining the University of Minnesota, Keefe did post-doctoral work at Brown University jointly with the departments of Computer Science and Ecology and Evolutionary Biology and with the Rhode Island School of Design.  He received the Ph.D. in 2007 from Brown University’s Department of Computer Science and the B.S. in Computer Engineering summa cum laude from Tufts University in 1999.

Dan Knights


Dr. Dan Knights is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering and the BioTechnology Institute at the University of Minnesota. He obtained his Ph.D. in Computer Science under Rob Knight and Mike Mozer at the University of Colorado at Boulder, with a certificate in Interdisciplinary Quantitative Biology from the University of Colorado's BioFrontiers Institute. He came to the University of Minnesota from a post-doctoral fellowship in the lab of Ramnik Xavier at Harvard Medical School and the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard. His lab studies the human-associated microbial communities (microbiomes) using tools from bioinformatics and machine learning.

Joseph A. Konstan


Joseph A. Konstan is Distinguished McKnight Professor and Distinguished University Teaching Professor in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering at the University of Minnesota.  His research and teaching focus on human-computer interaction, social computing, recommender systems, applications of computing for public health, and ethical issues in online research.  His pioneering work on recommender systems has been recognized with the ACM Software System Award and the Seoul Test of Time Award.  His online specializations on Recommender Systems and User Interface Design have reached tens of thousands of learners.

Prof. Konstan is an active leader in ACM, currently serving as co-chair of its Publications Board.  He is a ACM, IEEE, and AAAS Fellow and a member of the CHI Academy.  He is available to talk about recommender systems and applied machine learning, social computing, user interface design, and online education.

Junaed Sattar


Sattar is an Assistant Professor of Robotics and HRI at the Department of Computer Science and Engineering, and the founding director of the Interactive Robotics and Vision Laboratory. His primary research focus is on making robots work safely and intuitively with people, so humans and robot can coexist and collaborate. This means looking into improving a robot's perception about people, their intentions and/or actions to engage in dialog, as well as perceptions of the environment. Sensing the world accurately, particularly under changing conditions is an open challenge; his research interest thus extends into multi-modal sensory perception. His past research has been heavily influenced by making robots work with humans in unstructured environments, particularly underwater, and current and future work involves field robots in the water and outdoor, all-terrain platforms.

Shashi Shekhar


Shashi Shekhar, a McKnight Distinguished University Professor at the University of Minnesota and an U.C. Berkeley alumnus, is a leading scholar of spatial computing and Geographic Information Systems (GIS). He is serving as the President of the University Consortium for GIS, a member of the Computing Research Association (CRA) board, and a co-Editor-in-Chief of Geo-Informatica journal (Springer). Earlier, he served on many National Academies' committees. Recognitions include IEEE-CS Technical Achievement Award, UCGIS Education Award, IEEE Fellow and AAAS Fellow. Contributions include algorithms for evacuation route planning and spatial pattern (e.g., colocation, linear hot-spots) mining, an Encyclopedia of GIS and a Spatial Databases textbook.

Jaideep Srivastava


Jaideep Srivastava directs a laboratory focusing on research in web mining, social media analytics, and health analytics. He has authored moe than 285 papers, and supervised 29 PhD dissertations and 58 MS theses. He is currently co-leading a multi-institutional, multi-disciplinary project in the rapidly emerging area of social computing (http://vwobservatory.com/). His research has been supported by government agencies, including NSF, NASA, ARDA, DARPA, IARPA, NIH, CDC, US Army, US Air Force, and MNDoT; and industries, including IBM, United Technologies, Eaton, Honeywell, Cargill, and Huawei Telecom. He has an active collaboration with Allina's Center for Healthcare Innovation, where he is a Distinguished Fellow.

Eric Van Wyk


Dr. Eric Van Wyk is an associate professor at the University of Minnesota.  He is the recipient of the 2017 Charles E. Bower Faculty Teaching Award, a recipient of a National Science Foundation CAREER Award, and a 2005-2007 McKnight Land-Grant professor.  He earned an B.A. in Mathematics and Computer Science from Luther College and a Ph.D. in Computer Science from The University of Iowa.  He was a post-doc at Oxford University before joining the University of Minnesota.  His research interests include techniques for the declarative specification and implementation of programming and modeling languages.  Of particular interest is the application of such techniques to extensible languages and modular language extensions in which language extensions can be automatically and reliably composed with a host language specification.

Lana Yarosh


Lana Yarosh is an Assistant Professor in the Computer Science & Engineering Department at University of Minnesota. Her research in HCI focuses on embodied interaction in social computing systems. Lana is currently most proud of getting both the NSF CRII and the NSF CAREER awards, of her best papers at CHI 2013 and CSWC 2014, and of receiving the McKnight Land Grant Professorship. Lana has two Bachelors of Science from University of Maryland (in Computer Science and Psychology), a Ph.D. in Human-Centered Computing from Georgia Institute of Technology, and two years of industry research experience with AT&T Labs Research.

Zhi-Li Zhang


Professor Zhang is McKnight Distinguished University Professor and Qwest Chair Professor at Department of Computer Science & Engineering, University of Minnesota. He received his B.S. degree in Computer Science from Nanjing University, China, and his M.S. and Ph.D. degrees in Computer Science from the University of Massachusetts, Amherst. Dr. Zhang’s research interests lie broadly in computer communication and networks, Internet technology, multimedia and emerging applications. His past research was centered on the analysis, design and development of scalable Internet QoS solutions to support performance-demanding multimedia applications. His current research focuses on building highly scalable, resilient and secure Internet and cyber-physical systems & infrastructures and developing mechanisms to enhance Internet service availability, reliability and security, and on developing next generation, service-oriented, manageable Internet architectures to provide better support for creation, deployment, operations and management of value-added smart services and underlying networks, including mobile, cloud and content delivery services and networks. Dr. Zhang has published more than 150 journal, conference and workshop papers.  Dr. Zhang has received several honors for his research, and he is co-recipient of a number of Best Paper Awards. He is a Fellow of IEEE.