(Photo by Janet Rodgers)

Praveen Rao, Ph.D.

Associate Professor

Department of Computer Science & Electrical Engineering

School of Computing and Engineering

University of Missouri-Kansas City

Email: raopr AT umkc DOT edu


Dr. Praveen Rao is an associate professor in the Department of Computer Science & Electrical Engineering at University of Missouri-Kansas City (UMKC). He joined UMKC in 2007 as an assistant professor. His research interests are in the areas of data and knowledge management, data science, and health informatics. His research, teaching, and outreach activities have been supported by the National Science Foundation (NSF), Air Force Research Lab (AFRL), University of Missouri Research Board, Intel Labs, IBM, Amazon Web Services Education Research Grant, Microsoft Azure Research Award, Headquarters Counseling Center (Kansas), and Kansas City Power and Light (KCP&L). In 2010, he received the IBM Smarter Planet Faculty Innovation Award. In 2013, he was one of the 14 professors world-wide to receive the IBM Big Data and Analytics Faculty Award. In 2015 and 2016, he was selected as a fellow in the U.S. Air Force Research Lab Summer Faculty Fellowship Program. In 2015, he spent part of his summer as a visiting researcher at the Xerox Research Center India (XRCI). The same year he became a Senior Member of the IEEE. In 2016, he received the prestigious National Research Council (NRC) Research Associateship Award to conduct research at the Air Force Research Lab in Rome, NY for one year.

At UMKC, Dr. Rao is a Co-PI of the NSF IUCRC Center for Big Learning. He is also a collaborating faculty with the Center for Health Insights. He serves as the faculty advisor of the Missouri Epsilon Chapter of Upsilon Pi Epsilon (UPE), UMKC. In 2016, he received UMKC's Award for Excellence in Mentoring Undergraduate Researchers, Scholars, and Artists. In 2018, he received the N.T. Veatch Award for distinguished research and creativity.

Dr. Rao received his Ph.D. and M.S. degrees in Computer Science from the University of Arizona in 2007 and 2001, respectively. He was supervised by Prof. Bongki Moon. In 2007, he received the Graduate Student Research Award for his dissertation work at the University of Arizona. Dr. Rao received his B.E. degree in Computer Engineering from University of Pune in 1999. During 2001-2002, he worked as a software engineer for Amazon in Seattle.

Current Research Projects

Federal Funding


  • Fast and approximate score computation for Bayesian networks, DiSC [website]
  • Detecting Cyberthreats on Twitter, SocialKB [website]
  • Semantically Enriching Food, Energy, and Water Datasets, RichRDF [website]
  • Scalable Storage of Whole Slide Images and Fast Retrieval, NiDAN [website]
  • Internet-scale Cardinality Estimation of XPath Queries, XGossip​, [website]
  • A Smartphone Application for Vaccination Tracking, Jeev, [website]
  • Fast processing of SPARQL Queries on RDF Quadruples, RIQ, [website]
  • Large-scale sharing and querying of clinical documents, CDN, [website]
  • A Tool for Fast Indexing and Querying of Graphs [Project website]
  • psiX: An Internet-Scale Service for Publishing and Locating XML Documents [Project website]
  • PRIX: XML Indexing and Twig Query Processing using Prüfer Sequences [Project website][Award]

Past Research Projects

  • XML Indexing and Pattern Matching [ICDE '04, TODS '06] (Software Release)
  • XML Filtering [VLDB '05, DKE '08, TOIT '09]
  • XML Stream Processing [ICDE '06]