Latest News

Matthew Hendricks and Anamaria Berea Receive Honors from Teradata University Network 

September 12, 2014 - The CCB would like to congratulate Matthew Hendricks, a CCB researcher, on being awarded as a finalist in the 2014 Teradata University Network Inaugural Student Poster Contest, and Anamaria Berea, a CCB postdoctoral fellow, for being awarded a 2014 Teradata University Network Faculty Scholarship.

 Every year, thousands of professionals in the areas of big data, analytics and data driven marketing gather to learn about new technologies and share their unique implementations with each other at the Teradata PARTNERS Conference. This year, the Teradata University Network (TUN) will be a large part of the 29th conference in Nashville on October 19th - 23rd, 2014.  Earlier this year, Teradata University Network announced two separate opportunities for academics to attend the event, a scholarship program and a student poster contest.  The University of Maryland’s Center for Complexity in Business is very proud to have a finalist/winner for both opportunities.

Matthew Hendricks’ winning submission in the poster contest is entitled Big Network Analysis for Influence Identification on Social Networks. The PARTNERS Poster Contest gives students the opportunity to present and discuss their research or application cases related to data warehousing and analytics informally with conference attendees.

Anamaria Berea’s Faculty Scholarship winning submission included an assessment of data science skills and experience, and a statement of purpose for using big data in research and teaching as part of the Teradata University Network.

All finalists and winners will be receiving full conference registration to the event which includes: access to over 200 educational sessions, the Expo with the top technology companies in big data and analytics, and all conference meals and special events including the Gala Event with The Band Perry at the Grand Ole Opry!

Matthew Hendricks’ winning abstract is below –
Big Network Analysis for Influence Identification on Social Networks
     Matthew Hendricks - University of Maryland

In the past few years there has been a dramatic increase in the magnitude of network-based data due to the omnipresent consumption of social media networks.  Online marketing strategies have widely adopted use of such data, but analysis of online social networks poses a significant challenge, due to the volume of data and access restrictions imposed by social media sites.  Due to such restrictions, we must resort to network sampling techniques. In this research, we discuss the challenges related to large network analysis using MapReduce-based cloud services and the efficacy of network crawling techniques as a means for representative sampling.

MSI Grant Received

May 7, 2014 -- The CCB is pleased to announce that they will be jointly receiving a research grant from the Marketing Science Institute (MSI) of $14,550 to support the Center's latest research project, Brand Crisis Reverberation.  This project is being developed in conjunction with the University of Tennessee and the Massey University of New Zealand.   

This project will examine the reverberation that is created by a firm's own marketing output and will explore the interplay and feedback between a company's message, mass media and consumer response to capture the impact of these reverberations on the firm's corporate reputation and business performance.  The CCB, as a leading research institute in understanding social media conversations through the lens of complex systems, hopes to gain a better understanding of how the social media environment has aided in the reverberation that spread brand crisis to other media channels.  

The proposal was submitted by the center's Executive Director, Dr. Roland Rust, and Director, Dr. William Rand in collaboration with Kelly Hewett of the University of Tennessee and Harald van Heerde of the Massey University.  The research grant will be used to purchase social media data sets to aid in their research. 

Using a combination of social media analysis and machine learning, through this project, the partnering universities will seek to better understand how brand crisis is disseminated through social media. Ultimately, this project will provide a better understanding of the interplay between social media, traditional media and public relations to aid companies in their decision making process to be able to address brand crisis more effectively.

As commented by Dr. Rand, “This award will give us a unique opportunity to analyze a treasure trove of social media interactions by four major firms and their consumers to determine social media’s potential effect on corporate America and brand reputation.”

This project feeds directly into MSI’s 2014-2016 research priorities and will support their interests in developing marketing analytics for data rich environments by leveraging digital and social technology to effectively measure and communicate the value of similar marketing activities and investments.  


CCB and Teradata Hosts 2nd Annual Digital Marketing Analytics Roundtable

The 2013 Digital Marketing Analytics Roundtable will examine the complexity and volume of customer interactions through digital channels and how these factors have accelerated the need for marketers to conduct digital marketing analytics on data -- such as social, geo-location and display, to better interpret key consumer behaviors. The motivation is that analytics performed on this new data, when used appropriately, have the potential to revolutionize marketing. While not simple, the good news is that computational power has become more cost effective resulting in widespread use and adoption of digital marketing analytics among data scientists and marketers. Pioneers from both industry and academia will share their knowledge, research, and insights in a roundtable format that encourages open discussion and break-through ideas.

Director Rand discusses the relationship between Social Media, Mobile Commerce, and Retail

In a recent episode of Smith Business Close-Up, Center for Complexity Director Bill Rand spoke about how e-commerce and social media have revolutionized holiday shopping and the way consumers make purchases throughout the entire year. Specifically, with the rise of mobile and tablet-based commerce, it's become easier than ever to shop from anywhere at any time while still incorporating tips and advice from friends and retailers through social media. Smith Business Close-Up is co-produced by the Robert H. Smith School of Business and Maryland Public Television focusing on the latest thinking in business management featuring in-depth interviews of key industry thought leaders.

Joint Survey Results Announced

The CCB, Teradata and Mzinga today announced the results of a recent industry survey exploring the use of social technologies and big data analytics in business. This survey of more than 500 participants reveals that though many companies are using social technologies and interested in analytic technologies, few of them are really analyzing the data produced by these technologies in a sophisticated manner. Almost half of those surveyed feel that they are not using social technologies to their full potential and only 12 percent are using them on a day-to-day basis. It seems that more education on the use of these technologies, such as that provided by the MS in marketing analytics, are needed. See survey results.

Director Bill Rand Awarded DARPA Young Faculty Award to Examine the Use of Social Media

Rand was award a DARPA Young Faculty Award for his proposal "Intelligent Interfaces for Social Media: Monitoring, Modeling and Engaging in Online Conversations." The objective of the DARPA Young Faculty Award (YFA) program is to identify and engage rising research stars in junior faculty positions at U.S. academic institutions and expose them to Department of Defense needs as well as DARPA’s program development process. This research award will cover two years of support for multiple graduate students.

CCB hosted Digital Marketing Analytics Roundtable - Sponsored by Teradata

Complexity science can shed valuable insights into digital marketing analytics, and the CCB hosted a roundtable in downtown Washington DC on June 21st, sponsored by Teradata. Connecting the dots between the CMO and the CIO, this roundtable examined the powerful new abilities of digital marketing analytics, the barriers to successful implementation and the future of marketing analytics. The roundtable featured speakers from a wide variety of industries and from different slices of the marketing analytics chain.

CCB receives funding to encourage undergraduate research

The National Science Foundation has awarded the CCB with a new round of funding to continue the Research Experience for Undergraduates component of its Diffusion and Ranking in Digital Social Media research project. Previous REU students for the CCB have published papers at conferences, conducted their own research projects on Amazon's Mechanical Turk, and developed complex databases setups with advanced web interfaces.

Big Data: The Next Big Thing in Data Analytics

When it comes to use of large data sets and data analytics by companies, Smith School marketing department chair P.K. Kannan finds there is frequently a disconnect between the data collected by companies and the analytics those companies need. It requires time and expertise to reorganize data into marketing-analytic solutions; as data sets grow larger, it will take better analytical techniques and some novel, bottom-up approaches to make the best use of this information. Teradata's goal is to turn huge volumes of information into front-line actions that give companies a competitive advantage. The Smith School is partnering with Teradata to host a roundtable in June 2012. In 2013 the school launched a new MS in marketing analytics, designed to create the business-savvy analysts needed to interpret ever-larger collections of information.

CCB Director Bill Rand Spoke at the Big Analytics 2012 and NetSci 2012

Center Director Bill Rand spoke on the power of complexity methods to help understand the complex world of social networks. At Big Analytics he examined how the power of running analytics on Big Data makes this possible and at NetSci he discussed the economic implications of the new understanding made possible by social media analytics.

CCB Used Computational Model to Predict Super Tuesday Primaries

CCB Researchers, David Anderson and Anna Devlin, in collaboration with Director William Rand used an advanced computational model based on linear programming and discrete choice modeling to make predictions about the results of the 2012 GOP Super Tuesday Primaries. The model correctly picked 8 out of 10 of the states, and more closely matched the electoral results than the best polling data available.

CCB Announces Research Paper Repository on SSRN

The Center for Complexity in Business is pleased to announce a new repository of papers hosted at the
Social Science Research Network. The repository currently hosts a dozen papers covering topics including agent-based modeling, viral marketing, data simulation, and diffusion. The repository can be found at this link.

CCB's 3rd Annual Complexity Conference

On Friday, October 14 thought leaders from academics and industry gathered at the Ronald Reagan Building in Washington, DC for the 3rd Annual Complexity in Business Conference. This conference strives to be the intersection for complex systems and business.

Rand Appears on Smith Business Close-Up

On August 18, 2011 CCB Director Bill Rand appeared on Maryland Public Television on Smith Business Close-Up talking about diffusion in Social Media, which includes such popular platforms as Facebook, Twitter, Linked In and You Tube. Smith Business Close-Up is co-produced by the Robert H. Smith School of Business and Maryland Public Television. The television segment focuses on the latest thinking in business management, and features in-depth interviews with Smith School faculty and other members of the school’s community of business leaders.

Center Director Bill Rand Featured as FT Expert in Summer 2011

Assistant Professor Bill Rand was featured twice during the summer of 2011 discussing Social Media. In the July 28, 2011 edition of Financial Times, Professor Rand appeared as the expert of the week, offering definitions on five terms heard in today's business news. His definitions were focused in the field of diffusion of information across social media platforms.

CCB Awarded Federal Highway Administration Grant

The CCB and Assistant Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering Lei Zhang (Principal Investigator) have been awarded a grant from the FHWA, to apply agent-based modeling and simulation to analyses of driver behavior and transportation systems management, and in providing insights for FHWA capital investments.

CCB Receives Research Experience for Undergraduates Supplement

The National Science Foundation has awarded the CCB with funding to continue the Research Experience for Undergraduates component of its Diffusion and Ranking in Digital Social Media research project. This project explores the use of social tagging on, Twitter, and other social media, in order to understand how preferences are shared, and influence is spread, across networks.

Center Faculty Awarded NSF Grant

CCB Researchers William Rand, Louiqa Raschid, and Yogesh Joshi have been award a three-year grant from the CISE division at NSF to study the diffusion of information and ranking of authority in social media.

Center for Complexity in Business awarded grant by Google and WPP Marketing to study the transition of newspapers to the online world



Mar 26, 2015
World Class Faculty & Research
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Working professionals with an interest in the Washington, D.C., region have a new source for bite-sized business insights, delivered weekly to their inboxes from the University of Maryland’s Robert H. Smith School of Business.

Jan 28, 2015
World Class Faculty & Research
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Roland Rust, active with research and academic institutions in England and the Netherlands, is one of two people this year to be elected a Fellow of the European Marketing...

Jan 14, 2015
World Class Faculty & Research
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The American Marketing Association has selected Professor Roland Rust at the University of Maryland's Robert H. Smith School of Business as an inaugural AMA Fellow in a new program that honors top marketing academics.

Oct 23, 2014
World Class Faculty & Research
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Officials are applying social media, such as the CDC Emergency Twitter handle, to disseminate Ebola-related information and using wireless networks to track and predict outbreak patterns and locate individuals exposed to the virus. Companies concurrently are monitoring for threats to their supply chains, such as the Ivory Coast cocoa...

Sep 15, 2014
World Class Faculty & Research
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September 12, 2014 - The CCB would like to congratulate Matthew Hendricks, a CCB researcher, on being awarded as a finalist in the 2014 Teradata University Network Inaugural Student Poster Contest, and Anamaria Berea, a CCB postdoctoral fellow, for being awarded a 2014 Teradata University Network Faculty Scholarship.

Aug 19, 2014
World Class Faculty & Research
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Latecomer Strategy Propels Amazon Local Register

Mobile card reader will give Amazon new access to offline consumer data, UMD Expert Says

Amazon's push into a mobile payment space targeting brick-and-mortar merchants with Amazon Local Register means the online retail giant is poised to leverage new insight into offline shoppers, a University of...

Jul 22, 2014
World Class Faculty & Research
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The Annual Complexity in Business Conference endeavors to be the premier meeting for the intersection of Complex Systems and Business. The 6th annual conference will be a one and a half day event and will include talks by thought leaders and an audience blend of academics and industry practitioners. We are very excited to announce that this year we will be having a concurrent track during the conference and will be accepting abstract submissions from the public. We are looking forward to a lively set of interactions among a very distinguished group of...

Mar 25, 2014
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March 24, 2014 - The Robert H. Smith Center for Complexity in Business, in cooperation with the MS Program in Marketing Analytics, is excited to announce their first Amazon Web Services in Education grant of $3,800 USD of usage credits.  The grant was applied for by the Center’s Director, Dr. William Rand and will be used in Data Science, a course in Smith’s MS in Marketing Analytics curriculum.  This will give the Marketing Analytics MS students a chance to analyze big data using cloud computing.  

Mar 13, 2014
World Class Faculty & Research
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Hot Topic Alert: March 13, 2014
Attention: Business and marketing reporters and editors 


Mar 10, 2014
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The Center for Complexity in Business invites applications for a post-doctoral research position.  Read about the requirements, type of research, and application process on the Latest News page.