Virtual Center for Supernetworks

The Virtual Center for Supernetworks is a multidisciplinary research center that models the complex interactions in and among  network systems. These network systems can be classified as supernetworks and can include transportation, telecommunication, supply chain, environmental, public utility, financial, logistical, economic, knowledge flow, and social networks. The Center's Director, John F. Smith Memorial Professor of Operations Management, Anna Nagurney, and Center Associates, both faculty and students, along with industrial associates, create mathematical models and computer algorithms to solve complex decision-making processes that bring efficiency and optimize flows of resources. 


Among the problems considered by the director and associates include traffic flow where there is complex interaction between the thousands of commuters/drivers, the identification and reformulation of supply chain problems as transportation network equilibrium problems, the interactions among complex networks including power, transportation, telecommunications, etc that make up our infrastructure, the effects of failure of a link on the entire network performance, the identification of critical links and nodes in these complex network systems, and the existence of paradoxical behavior in networks.


Currently, the director and associates are also investigating network efficiency and performance in financial networks, transportation networks, and the Internet;  supply chains under disruptions and uncertainty; electric power supply chain networks, green logistics, and environmental decision-making.


The center's activities have been funded by the AT&T Foundation, the National Science Foundation, and the Rockefeller Foundation, as well as the John F. Smith Memorial Fund of the University of Massachusetts.

During the past few years 8 students have completed their doctoral degrees on research performed in the center. In addition, 15 undergraduate students have worked for the center. Three of the undergraduates received, at graduation, Leaders of the 21st Century Awards, the highest award the university bestows upon an undergraduate.


The center is the catalyst for the campus's student chapter of INFORMS (the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences), which coordinates an innovative speaker series that brings high-profile academics and practitioners to  campus. The chapter, which was honored in 2007 with the international organization's annual Summa Cum Laude award, also promotes interdisciplinary scholarship and spearheads community activities.

For further information contact Anna Nagurney, Director or visit the Supernetworks Laboratory for Computation and Visualization's web site at: