V.S. Subrahmanian is Professor of Computer Science and Director of the Lab for Computational Cultural Dynamics and Director of the Center for Digital International Government at the University of Maryland. He previously served a 6.5 year stint as Director of the University of Maryland Institute for Advanced Computer Studies. His work stands squarely at the intersection of big data analytics for increased security, policy, and business needs.

Prof. Subrahmanian is one of the world leaders in logical reasoning with uncertainty, probabilistic logics, temporal probabilistic logics, and managing huge, heterogeneous databases with incomplete and inconsistent information, and multimedia databases. In recent years, he has developed scalable methods to apply probabilistic logic models to a wide variety of real-world scenarios. He created the field of computational cultural dynamics with a suite of novel methods to analyze the behaviors of terrorist groups and applied them to making forecasts and suggesting policies to shape behaviors of groups like Hezbollah, Lashkar-e-Taiba, and Indian Mujahideen. These methods have since been applied to a variety of problems including predicting the stability of nations, predicting when protests will turn violent, predicting systemic banking crises in countries, predicting spread of malware in countries, predicting health care outcomes and in manufacturing. In combination with social network analysis, these methods have also been used to identify bad actors on social media, forecast diffusion in social media, and suggest methods to influence social networks. Prof. Subrahmanian led the team that won DARPA's Twitter Influence Bot Detection Challenge under their SMISC program. Prof. Subrahmanian is one of the world leaders in the design, analysis, and application of big data analytics to real world problems so that optimal decisions can be made by governments and companies. In cyber-security, Prof. Subrahmanian developed some of the first secure query processing algorithms, flexible authentication frameworks, unexplained behavior detection and scalable detection of known threats. His Global Cyber-Vulnerability Report published in January, 2016, charracterizes cyber-risk of 44 countries by studying data on over 44 hosts per year over 2 years over 20 Billion telemetry and malware reports.

In addition to his academic work, Prof. Subrahmanian has served for 2 years (2013, 2014) on the US-India Strategic Dialog (track 2), the India-Israel track 2/dialog (2013, 2014), the US Air Force Science Advisory Board, and DARPA”s Executive Advisory Council on their Advanced Logistics Program. He serves currently on the Research Advisory Board of Tata Consultancy Services (India’s biggest software firm), the Board of Directors of the Development Gateway (created by the World Bank in 1999), and Sentimetrix, Inc., a big data analytics firm, and CosmosId, a leading bioinformatics company. He serves on the boards of numerous journals including Science, ACM Transactions on Intelligent Systems & Technology, ACM Transactions on Computational Logic, and IEEE Transactions on Computational Social Systems.


Research Summary

Past major research accomplishments (collaboratively with students and colleagues) include:

Ongoing work:


Recent Books:

Select list of recent publications:

Accolades and Praise

Selected Praise for V.S. Subrahmanian's book on Global Cyber-vulnerability Report

Selected Praise for V.S. Subrahmanian's work on Lashkar-e-Taiba

Selected Praise for V.S. Subrahmanian's book on Indian Mujahideen

For a more complete listing, click here.

Media Coverage

V.S. Subrahmanian’s work and/or opinions has been featured in major publications including the Washington Post, the Guardian, the Economist, the Baltimore Sun, the New York Times, the Wall Street Journal, the Huffington Post, ComputerWorld, FastCompany, McClatchy Newspapers, Associated Press, and others.

Overseas, his work has been featured in major newspapers such as The Manila Times, the Hindustan Times, Economic Times, Malaysia Sun, the Beirut Daily Star, and many others.

He has been featured on TV and radio programs such as Canada AM, WBAL TV, WJLA TV, American Public Media’s Future Tense program,Swiss Public Radio, Danish National Broadcasting, and many others.

In addition, his work has been featured in popular scientific outlets such as Nature, the New Scientist, Scientific American (.com), Science News, and Popular Science.

For a more complete listing with links to the articles, click here.


Select list of invited keynotes:

For a more complete listing with links to invited talks/keynotes, click here.







April 2008 in a published paper

1st half of 2009

Predicted Hezbollah would NOT carry out attacks against Israeli civilians prior to Lebanese elections in 2009.

Prediction was correct even though Hezbollah released a statement in the Beirut Daily Star in Oct 2008 stating that they had seen our prediction


May 2011, counter-terrorism meeting in the Washington DC area

July-December 2011

Armed clashes between LeT/LeT proxies and Indian security forces

Several such incidents occurred


Civilians will be abducted by LeT/LeT proxies

Several such incidents occurred


LeT/LeT proxies will let some abducted civilians go

Several civilians abducted by LeT “escaped”; Unclear if LeT let them go intentionally


Armed clashes between LeT/LeT proxies and other armed groups

LeT targeted leaders of the Jammu Kashmir Liberation Front (JKLF)


Fedayeen attacks on production sites will be carried out by LeT and proxies

None reported though several attacks were thwarted


Dec 2012, Dutch police conference; January 2013, Aspen Institute Delhi talk

January-March 2013

Predicted no major LeT/LeT proxy attacks on either professional security forces or on public, symbolic, transportation sites

No such attacks occurred


Predicted that LeT/LeT proxies will carry out small attacks on civilians

Several such attacks occurred


May 2013, U.S. Consulate talk in Mumbai

June-September 2013

Predicted that there will be LeT attacks on either professional security forces or public, symbolic, or transportation targets

The Bodh Gaya attacks in June 2013 are believed to have been carried out either by IM which is an LeT ally


Predicted that there will be small LeT attacks on civilians

Multiple such attacks along the Indian border


May 6 2013 Sentiment Analysis Symposium, NY

May 15 2013

Predicted Nawaz Sharif would be elected Prime Minister of Pakistan

Correctly predicted – two days after our prediction, the BBC incorrectly called the election too close to call!


Sep 5 2013 op-ed in the Indian Express points out that arrests of IM operatives are usually followed by attacks

Next few months

Predicted IM attacks

Attacks in Oct 2013 on BJP Prime Ministerial Candidate Narendra Modi’s rally in Patna


March 6 2014 Sentiment Analysis Symposium, NY

May 2014

Predicted Narendra Modi will be India’s next Prime Minister using Twitter data



Jan 20 2014 and Jan 24 2014 talks (sponsored by Aspen India) in Kolkata and Delhi respectively.

Jan – May 2014

Predicted IM attacks

Several IM attacks foiled by Indian security forces

Article 1  Article 2 Article 3 Artcle 4 Article 5

Please note that all predictions of attacks by LeT reflect not just LeT but by groups (e.g. IM) that are considered to be close proxies of LeT.

Research Group

Tanmoy Chakraborty

Postdoctoral fellow

Chiara Pulice

Postdoctoral fellow

Srijan Kumar

Ph.D. student

Joseph Barrow

Ph.D. student

Liqian Zhang

Ph.D. student

Sachin Grover

Masters student

Des Chandoke

Masters student

Gabriella Farley

Undergraduate student

Eric Lancaster

Undergraduate student

Alexander Yu

Undergraduate student

The complete list of people involved with the group can be found here.


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