About me

Xiaodi Wu ( in simplified Chinese )

I am an Assistant Professor in the Department of Computer Science and Institute for Advanced Computer Studies at the University of Maryland, College Park. I am also a Fellow at the Joint Center for Quantum Information and Computer Science (QuICS).

I received my Phd in theoretical computer science in 2013 (advisor: Yaoyun Shi) from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor. I received my B.S. degree in mathematics and physics in 2008 from the Academic Talent Program, Tsinghua University.

Before coming to Maryland, I was an Assistant Professor in the Computer and Information Science Department at the University of Oregon from 2015 to 2017. Before that, I was a Postdoctoral Associate at Massachusetts Institute of Technology from 2013 to 2015 (advisor: Aram Harrow, Scott Aaronson). I was also a Simons Research Fellow at the Simons Institute for the Theory of Computing at Berkeley, for the program of Quantum Hamiltonian Complexity in Spring 2014 (advisor: Umesh Vazirani). I also spent two summers at the Institute for Quantum Computing, University of Waterloo as a student intern (advisor: John Watrous).

Research Interests

My research aims to identify and contribute to the research where the ideas from computer science in general, i.e., computational thinking, can help facilitate the implementation of end-to-end quantum applications. To that end, my research investigates a broad range of perspectives of quantum computing, including its theoretical foundation and applications, applications and system engineering of near-term quantum devices, the software foundation (programming languages and system) of quantum computing, and the computer-aided design for quantum devices.

Specifically, it aims to contribute to the development of quantum information and computation through the study in theoretical computer science, which includes:

  • quantum algorithms

  • quantum computational complexity

  • quantum cryptography

It also aims to contribute to the theory and practice of near-term quantum applications, which includes:

  • quantum applications in optimization and machine learning

  • the foundation of variational quantum methods

  • quantum sensing networks for localization and synchronization

  • (practical) delegation and verification of quantum computation

  • architecture, control and system engineering for near-term quantum machines

It also aims to contribute to formal methods and programming languages in quantum computing, which includes:

  • formally verified software toolchain for quantum computing (e.g. a certified optimizing complier for quantum programs)

  • quantum program design, analysis, and verification

  • analog quantum computing tool chain (e.g., compilation to analog quantum simulators)

  • mechanized and automated proof of the security of quantum cryptography

as well as its application in computer-aided design of quantum devices:

  • hardware description languages and design automation for quantum devices

Please check my Research Overview for details of my existing and on-going projects.

Shortcuts to Projects from my group.

Shortcuts to Expository Materials

Group Information

I am actively looking for students and postdocs who are interested in quantum computing.

  • For perspective postdocs, I am especially looking for candidates who have expertise in programming languages, logic, and formal methods and are interested in applying them in the field of quantum computing. For general interests in quantum computing, please consider applying to QuICS Hartree Postdoctoral Fellowship.

If you are interested in working with me, please send me an email to let me know of your interest.

  • Postdocs:

    • Liyi Li (co-advised with Mike Hicks, 2020 -)

    • Xiong Fan (co-advised with Jonathan Katz, 2020 - 2021. Now a researcher at Algorand. )

    • Robert Rand (co-advised with Mike Hicks, 2018-2020. Now an assistant professor at University of Chicago.)

    • QuICS Hartree Postdoctoral Fellows (who I have closely worked with): Penghui Yao (now Associate Professor at Nanjing University), Xin Wang (now Staff Researcher at Baidu), Cedric Lin (now at AWS Braket).


Research supported by


National Science Foundation (NSF)


Department of Energy (DOE)


Air Force Office of Scientific Research (AFOSR)


Army Research Office (ARO)


Amazon Web Services (AWS)

I am part of the following collaborations:


Office: IRB 5210

Computer Science
5109 Brendan Iribe Center for Computer Science and Engineering
8125 Paint Branch Drive
University of Maryland
College Park, MD 20742

Email: xwu (at) cs.umd.edu