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Introducting New NICO Faculty Members

NICO is excited to welcome new faculty members into our midst:  Dashun Wang and Hyejin Youn!

Dashun Wang was appointed a core faculty member at NICO in the Fall of 2016. An Associate Professor of Management & Organizations at the Kellogg School of Management, and an Associate Professor of Industrial Engineering & Management Sciences (Courtesy), Dashun leads a group of highly interdisciplinary researchers who are extremely passionate about data. Their research takes a multidisciplinary approach, combining computational social science, statistical physics, and computer science to exploit the opportunities and promises offered by Big Data. Through the lens of new and increasingly large-scale datasets, they hope to use and develop tools of network science to improve the way in which we understand the interconnectedness of the social, technical and business world around us. Their research has been applied to understand and predict social interaction and human mobility, in addition to other areas, and has been published in journals such as Science and PNAS and featured in Forbes, The Economist, The New York Times, and The Guardian, among major global media outlets.

Recent publications by Dashun’s team include “The Time Dimension of Science:  Connecting the Past to the Future,” in Journal of Informetrics, and “Quantifying Patterns of Research-Interest Evolution,” in Nature Human Behavior. Dashun’s team of 4 PhD students, 1 Post-Doctoral Fellow, and 1 visiting student collaborate together on a daily basis at NICO. Their current research focus is on Science of Science, hoping to use and develop tools from complexity sciences and artificial intelligence to broadly explore the opportunities and promises offered by the recent data explosion in science.

Dashun holds both a PhD and M.Sc. in Physics from Northeastern University and a B.Sc. in Physics from Fudan University. He lives in Evanston with his wife, Tian, and their 19-month-old son, Allen.

Hyejin Youn was appointed a core faculty member at NICO in the Fall of 2017. An Assistant Professor of the Management & Organizations Department at the Kellogg School of Management, Hyejin conducts research on innovation and technological change using information theory, scaling theory, and network theory. Hyejin has been published in journals such as PNAS, Nature Communication, Evolutionary Anthropology, and Physical Review Letter. Her work has also been featured in The Economist, Forbes, Nature, and Scientific American, just to name a few. Hyejin’s honors and awards include National Science Foundation, and Royal Society for Arts Fellowship, and London Mathematical Laboratory Fellowship.

Hyejin’s team of researchers study a variety of topics at the interface between mathematical methods and socio-economic systems. Among them, her team currently focuses on systematic understanding of the interplay between human society, and technological innovation, a great manifestation of which is city. On one hand, her team investigates how cities constantly reconfigure their built-environment (infrastructure) and our life styles (social structure, and economic activities) in a way to accommodate more people, facilitate interactions, and hence, entail higher productivity. On the other hand, she looks into the structure, and dynamics of these technological innovations using economic data, and patent data set, to illuminate potential innovation pathways both visually and mathematically. Her most recent work, for example, estimates potential impact of automation to the labour market in urban areas, and was recently featured in an MIT Technology Review article.

Hyejin holds a Ph.D., M.S. and B.S. in Physics from KAIST, and research fellowships in Harvard University, MIT, University of Oxford, and Santa Fe Institute.

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