CDSE Days 2020 is cancelled

Due to caution regarding COVID-19 and the safety of our students, staff, faculty, speakers, and attendees, CDSE Days 2020 is cancelled. Please continue to visit the UB COVID-19 Information website for updates and important information related to this evolving situation.

6th Annual CDSE Days

March 30 - April 3, 2020 | University at Buffalo | Buffalo, NY

researchers in the center for computational research.
student working on computer.
center for computational research.
researchers in the center for computational research.

Overview of CDSE Days 2020

CDSE Days is an annual event that connects students and faculty from UB and regional colleges and universities, and professionals from local industry, with some of the nation's most prominent scholars of computational and data-enabled science. CDSE Days is a week-long event in Buffalo filled with workshops, lectures, and networking.

The CDSE Days 2020 agenda includes research talks on timely subjects such as the opioid epidemic, polling data analysis, and high-performance computing in the chemical sciences. Instructional workshops will also be conducted on python, agent-based computational models (ABM), blockchain, SQL, machine learning, and using UB’s Center for Computational Research (CCR). The week will end with TED-style talks from industry partners and sessions on career opportunities for computational scientists. 

Speakers Abstracts Poster Sessions

Speakers and Presenters

Keynote Speakers

Mark Adams.

Mark F. Adams, PHD

Scalable Solvers Group at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory

Donald Burke.

Donald s. Burke

Professor of Health Science and Policy and Epidemiology, University of Pittsburgh

Andrew Smith.

Andrew Smith

Director of the University of New Hampshire Survey Center; Professor of Practice in the UNH Department of Political Science


Bernard Badzioch, PhD


Associate Professor, Department of Math, University at Buffalo
Bernard Badzioch has research interests in algebraic topology and categorical algebra. He has taught several courses using Python and Jupyter to introduce students to scientific and mathematical computing.

Jon Bednasz

Jon Bednasz.

Senior Systems Administrator

Jon has been with CCR since 2002 and is currently serving as a Systems Administrator on CCR's High Performance Computing infrastructure. His primary responsibility is maintaining CCR's linux clusters. Prior to joining CCR, Jon worked as a UNIX/Solaris Systems Administrator Lucent Technologies. He has an MS in Computer Information Systems from New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT), and a BS in Computer Science from NJIT.

Andrew Bruno

Andrew Bruno.

Senior Statistics Administrator, Center for Computational Research, University at Buffalo

Andrew has been with the Center for Computational Research at the University at Buffalo since 2007.  He has a B.S. in Computer Science and an M.S. in Bioinformatics and Biostatistics from the University at Buffalo.

James Campbell

James Campbell.

Professor, Political Science, University at Buffalo

James E. Campbell is a UB Distinguished Professor of Political Science at the University at Buffalo, SUNY. He has been on UB’s faculty since 1998 and was previously a faculty member at the University of Georgia and Louisiana State University. His latest book, Polarized: Making Sense of a Divided America (Princeton, 2016), was named one of Choice’s Outstanding Academic Titles. His previous books include The American Campaign, Cheap Seats, Before the Vote, and The Presidential Pulse of Congressional Elections. He is also the author of more than 80 journal articles and book chapters on American politics, appearing in the American Political Science Review, the American Journal of Political Science, The Journal of Politics, and other leading research journals and edited volumes.

Cynthia Cornelius

HPC Applications/Systems Analyst, Center for Computational Research, University at Buffalo

Cynthia Cornelius received a B.A. in computer science, mathematics and statistics joint major and a MLS, both from the University at Buffalo.

Kenny Davila

Kenny Davila.

Postdoctoral Associate, University at Buffalo

Kenny Davila received his B.Sc. in Computing Systems Engineering from Universidad Tecnológica Centroamericana in Tegucigalpa, Honduras in 2009, and his M.Sc. in Computer Science and Ph.D. in Computer and Information Sciences from Rochester Institute of Technology in 2013 and 2017 respectively. He has been a Postdoctoral associate at University at Buffalo since August 2017. 

His research interests include applications of document analysis and recognition, as well as information retrieval. His work has strongly concentrated on recognition and search of mathematical expressions, as well as methods for automated summarization and search of content on lecture videos.

Sam Guercio

Sam Guercio.

Lead Systems Administrator, Center for Computational Research, University at Buffalo

Sam has been with CCR at the University at Buffalo since 2002 and is currently serving as the Lead Systems Administrator. His primary responsibility is CCR’s U2 cluster as well as machine room operations. Prior to joining CCR, Sam worked as a UNIX Systems administrator for Northrup Grumman.

Matt Jones, PHD

Associate Director and Lead Computational Scientist, Center for Computational Research, University at Buffalo

Dr. Matthew Jones has a PhD in physics from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Matthew Knepley, PhD

Matthew Knepley.

Associate Professor, Computer Science and Engineering, University at Buffalo

Matthew G. Knepley is an Associate Professor in the Computer Science and Engineering Department of the University at Buffalo. He received his B.S. in Physics from Case Western Reserve University in 1994, an M.S. in Computer Science from the University of Minnesota in 1996, and a Ph.D. in Computer Science from Purdue University in 2000. He was a Research Scientist at Akamai Technologies in 2000--2001 in the Distributed Data Collection and Data Analysis groups. Afterwards, he joined the Mathematics and Computer Science department at Argonne National Laboratory (ANL), where he was an Assistant Computational Mathematician, and a Fellow in the Computation Institute at University of Chicago, becoming a Senior Research Associate in 2009. In 2015, he joined the Computational and Applied Mathematics department at Rice University.

His research focuses on scientific computation, including scalable algorithms and parallel computing, numerical analysis, software development, high dimensional function approximation, and computational geophysics and biology. He is an author of the widely used PETSc library for scientific computing from ANL, and is a principal designer of the PyLith library for the solution of dynamic and quasi-static tectonic deformation problems. He developed the PETSc scalable unstructured mesh support based upon ideas from combinatorial topology. He was a J.~T. Oden Faculty Research Fellow at the Institute for Computation Engineering and Sciences, UT Austin, in 2008, won the R&D 100 Award in 2009, and the SIAM/ACM Prize in Computational Science and Engineering in 2015 as part of the PETSc team.

Dan Magnuszewski

Dan magnuszewski.

Cofounder and Chief Technology Officer at ACV Auctions

Dan Magnuszewski received his BS in Computer Science from UB in 2005. As Cofounder and Chief Technology Officer at ACV Auctions, he has been responsible for creating an industry disruptor and Buffalo’s first tech “Unicorn” company. ACV has raised over $300mm in Venture Capital and now employs over 1,200 people since its founding in 2015. Dan has been named one of Buffalo Business First’s most influential people of 2020, and he is an active member in the Buffalo Tech and startup  community. Previously he was Managing Director of Z80 Labs incubator and venture fund, and has started many local groups and events, such as Blockchain Buffalo, Buffalo Startup Weekend, and CoworkBuffalo. He also sits on UB’s Computer Science Advisory Council, and advocates for young technologist across all sectors of WNY.

Larry Megan

Larry Megan.

Senior Director, Linde.Digital

Larry Megan is currently Senior Director at Linde.Digital. The Linde.Digital team is chartered with enabling digital innovation across the enterprise, including Linde’s manufacturing operations, supply chains, and business processes, as well as creating a greater external digital presence.  

Larry joined Linde (formerly Praxair) in 1993, later becoming an R&D manager, Corporate Fellow and the first head of Praxair’s digital innovation organization. He holds multiple US patents and has co-authored 13 peer reviewed journal articles. He received AIChE’s Computing Practice award in 2015, the National Academy of Engineering Eminent Young Engineer award in 2006, and multiple internal awards. He is active in the Buffalo community through board positions with UB’s Interdisciplinary Science and Engineering Partnership, the UB Industrial Engineering Department and the Buffalo Manufacturing Works.

Larry has a BS in Chemical Engineering from Worcester Polytechnic Institute and a PhD in Chemical Engineering from the University of Connecticut.

Sara Metcalf, PhD

Sara Metcalf.

Professor, Geography, University at Buffalo

Dr. Metcalf is a geography professor who uses systems science approaches in her urban health and sustainability research to identify and implement feedback mechanisms with dynamic simulation models. Her educational background includes a PhD in geography as well as an MBA, MS/BS degrees in chemical engineering, and a BS in biochemistry. Dr. Metcalf has worked with agent-based models since her doctoral studies on urban networks, incorporating insights from system dynamics that she learned as a master’s student at MIT as a means of mathematically and visually representing social structures underlying problematic behavior over time. Using both agent-based modeling and system dynamics, Dr. Metcalf has applied systems modeling in a range of research projects to examine ways of promoting societal benefits such as health equity, food justice, and resilience.

Pavankumar Mulgund

Pavankumar Mulgund.

Assistant Professor, School of Management, University at Buffalo

Pavankumar Mulgund is a Clinical Assistant Professor and a doctoral candidate at the University at Buffalo, School of Management. His research interests include health information systems, database technologies and risk management. He brings more than a decade's industry experience in database management and technology consulting. He has taught multiple graduate and undergraduate courses in database management systems and systems analysis and design.

Nik Nanos

Nik Nanos, Chief Data Scientist.

Research Professor, Department of Political Science, College of Arts and Sciences

Nik Nanos leads Nanos Research, one of Canada’s most distinguished research companies.  The Nanos Research Group of Companies includes Nanos Rutherford McKay & Co, an affiliate of Nanos Research and Rutherford McKay Associates with service offerings including public acceptance and engagement, communications audits, and narrative development. It also includes Nanos-dimap Analytika, an analytics and targeting research practice which is a joint venture with dimap, one of Germany’s top research organizations.

He is the Chief Data Scientist and Founder of Nanos Research, a Global Fellow at the Woodrow Wilson International Center for Scholars in Washington DC, and a research professor at the State University of New York at Buffalo.  He is also the current Chair of Carleton University in Ottawa which has 30 thousand students and a budget of over $500M.

Nik leads the team behind the weekly Bloomberg Nanos Canadian Confidence Index, considered a must-have resource for senior executives and is also featured in a weekly segment on CTV’s News Channel, Nanos on the Numbers, which focuses on the latest political, business and social trends.

He is the pollster for CTV News, Canada’s largest private broadcaster, the Globe & Mail, Canada’s national newspaper, Bloomberg News in Canada.

His book, The Age of Voter Rage: Trump, Trudeau, Farage, Corbyn & Macron – The tyranny of small numbersexplores how the marginalized and the margins are rewiring democracy through populist style politics, small swings in voter sentiment and computational propaganda. 

Jacob Neiheisel, PhD

Jacob Neiheisel.

Associate Professor, Political Science, University at Buffalo

Jacob Neiheisel is an Associate Professor of Political Science at UB. He earned his MA and PhD in Political Science at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. His research focuses on religion and politics, political communication, elections, and symbolic politics. His work has appeared in leading journals in the field, including the American Journal of Political Science, Political Research Quarterly, American Politics Research, and Political Behavior.

Tolupe Olugboji, PhD

Tolulope Olugboji.

Assistant Professor, Earth and Enviromental Sciences, University of Rochester

Dr. Olugboji joined the Earth and Environmental Sciences faculty at the University of Rochester (UofR) as an Assistant Professor in the Fall of 2018. He completed his postdoctoral research at the University of Maryland (2015-2018). Before this, he obtained his Ph.D. from Yale University and his B.S. from the Obafemi Awolowo University in Nigeria (2008). He uses recordings of ground vibrations from seismic sensors across the globe, combined with high-performance computing, to build high-resolution images of Earth’s interior.  In 2018, He was named a Fellow at the Next Einstein Forum (NEF). The NEF Fellowship is a select program that recognizes Africa’s best young scientists and technologists. He is passionate about promoting earth science among high school students and the general public. He has been doing this as one of the Nifty-Fifty (times 4) speakers nominated by the USA Science and Engineering Festival in DC, and Virginia areas. At the UofR he leads the seismology group and teaches courses in nature’s fury, earth science data analysis, seismology and earth structure.

Salvatore Rappaccio

Salvatore Rappaccio.

Associate Professor, Physics, University at Buffalo

As an Associate Professor of Physics, Salvatore Rappoccio is an expert on particle detectors and subatomic and elementary particles, such as protons, neutrons, electrons, quarks, neutrinos, muons and exotic particles. He can comment on particle physics in general, as well as on the development of particle detectors and the results of experiments conducted with these devices.

Rappoccio is a member of the Compact Muon Solenoid (CMS) collaboration, a team of thousands of scientists who run the CMS, one of two major general-purpose particle detectors at the Large Hadron Collider, the largest particle accelerator in the world. Researchers use the CMS to search for evidence of new particles and exotic physics.

Ranga Setlur

Ranga Setlur.

Principal Research Scientist, Department of Computer Science and Engineering, University at Buffalo

Srirangaraj  Setlur is  Principal  Research  Scientist at  the  Center  for  Unified  Biometrics  and  Sensors, and Co-Director of the NSF Center for Identification Technology  Research,  at  the  University  at  Buffalo, The  State  University  of  New  York.  His  research focus  is  on  machine  learning  applications  in  the fields  of  document  analysis  and  recognition,  and biometrics.  He  has  over  60  publications  on  topics such as handwriting recognition, historical document processing,  chart  infographics  processing,  face  and other biometric recognition technologies, and affective computing, and he has co-authored the first edited book on OCR of Indic Scripts. He has held leadership positions in several academic conferences in both Document Analysis and Biometrics. He is a Senior Member of IEEE.

Danial Faghihi Shahrestani, PhD

Danial Faghihi Shahrestani.

Assistant Professor, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering, Univeristy at Buffalo

Danial Faghihi joined the University of Buffalo as an Assistant Professor in the Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering department in 2019. He earned his Ph.D. at Louisiana State University in 2012.  Prior to joining UB, he served as a research associate at the Oden Institute for Computational Engineering and Sciences at the University of Texas at Austin. Dr. Faghihi’s research focus has been on developing modern numerical methods for multiscale modeling of materials and tumor growth together with methods and algorithms for physics-based machine learning and quantifying uncertainty in various science and engineering problems.

Jeanette Sperhac

Jeanette Sperhac.

Scientific Programmer, Center for Computational Research University at Buffalo

Ms. Jeanette Sperhac holds M.S. degrees in Chemistry and Computer Science. She joined the University at Buffalo Center for Computational Research (CCR) in 2012. Ms. Sperhac works on multiple projects and science gateways at CCR, including:

  • VIDIA (, which provides students and researchers across SUNY with a powerful environment for hosting computations and scientific software.
  • XDMoD (, a comprehensive auditing framework used by XSEDE high performance computing centers.
  • VHub (, which supports global collaboration in volcanology research, including tools to model volcanic processes.
  • GHub (, which supports collaboration, tools, and datasets for glaciology research.

Since 2013, Ms. Sperhac has been the primary instructor for CCR's Eric Pitman Annual Summer Workshop in Computational Science. She is a frequent speaker at the Science Gateways Community Institute's annual conference.

Event Start Date: March 30, 2020