Nitin Agarwal, Ph.D.
Jerry L. Maulden-Entergy Chair & Donaghey Distinguished Professor
Department of Information Science
Donaghey College of STEM
Director, COSMOS Research Center
University of Arkansas - Little Rock

Faculty Fellow, International Computer Science Institute
University of California, Berkeley


Affiliations and Current Work

I am the Jerry L. Maulden-Entergy Chair & Donaghey Distinguished Professor of Information Science at the University of Arkansas – Little Rock. I am the founding director of the Collaboratorium for Social Media and Online Behavioral Studies (COSMOS) Research Center. I am also a faculty fellow at the International Computer Science Institute at the University of California, Berkeley. 

I joined the faculty of Information Science at UALR in Fall 2009. My research aims to push the boundaries of our understanding of emerging cybersocial behaviors that evolve in modern information and communication platforms. At COSMOS, I am leading projects with a total direct funding of over $25 million from an array of U.S. federal agencies, including the Department of Defense (Air Force, Navy, Army), DARPA, Department of State, and National Science Foundation. I play a significant role in the long-term partnership between UA Little Rock and the Department of Homeland Security. I have developed publicly available social media analysis tools (Blogtracker and VTracker), assisting NATO Strategic Communications and Public Affairs, European Defense agencies, Australian Defense Science and Technology agency’s strategic policy group, Singapore government, Arkansas Attorney General’s office, among others. I participate in the National Tech Innovation Hub launched by the U.S. Department of State to defeat foreign-based propaganda. 

Research, Publications, and Media

My research contributions lie at the intersection of social computing, behavior-cultural modeling, collective action, social cyber forensics, Artificial Intelligence, data mining, machine learning, smart health, and privacy. From Saudi Arabian women's right to drive cyber campaigns to Autism awareness campaigns to ISIS' and anti-West/anti-NATO disinformation campaigns, at COSMOS, I am directing several projects that have made foundational and applicational contributions to social and computational sciences, particularly in understanding coordinated cyber campaigns. I have published 11 books and over 300 articles in top-tier peer-reviewed forums, including NATO’s Defense StratCom Journal, Army University Press, CANSOFCOM’s Future Conflict journal, and Baltic Security, among others, with several best paper awards and nominations. My most recent book explores deviant behaviors on the Internet and is published by Springer in their series on cybersecurity. Local, national, and international media, including Bloomberg, US News, KUAR, Arkansas Business, Arkansas Times, Arkansas Democrat-Gazette, and many others, have covered my work. Over the last several years, I have spoken at various public and professional, national and international forums such as NATO’s StratCom COE (Riga, Latvia), DARPA, US Department of State, US Naval Space and Warfare (SPAWAR), US Pentagon’s Strategic Multilevel Assessment groups, US National Academies of Sciences Engineering and Medicine, US Office of the Director of National Intelligence, Facebook Asia Pacific HQ, Twitter Asia Pacific HQ, US Embassy in Singapore, Singapore Ministry of Communication and Information, NATO Senior Leadership meetings, USIP, among others. I serve as a technical advisor to Little Rock-based firms, including through the FinTech Accelerator.

Academic Journey and Accomplishments

I received my Ph.D. in Computer Science from the School of Computing and Augmented Intelligence, Arizona State University, with outstanding dissertation recognition in 2009. I received my bachelor's in technology in information technology from the Indian Institute of Information Technology in May 2003. I was recognized as one of 'The New Influentials: 20 In Their 20s' by Arkansas Business in 2012. I was recognized with the University-wide Faculty Excellence Award in Research and Creative Endeavors by UALR in 2015 and 2021. I received the Social Media Educator of the Year Award at the 21st International Education and Technology Conference in 2015. In 2017 the Arkansas Times featured me in their special issue on "Visionary Arkansans”. I was nominated as an International Academy, Research and Industry Association (IARIA) Fellow in 2017, an Arkansas Academy of Computing (AAoC) Fellow in 2018, and an Arkansas Research Alliance (ARA) Fellow in 2018. In 2021, my research was recognized as one of the top 10 solutions for “Countering Cognitive Warfare: The invisible Threat” by NATO’s Innovation Hub out of 132 teams from the 30 NATO member nations. In 2022, my COVID-19 Misinformation tracker was recognized by the World Health Organization (WHO) as one of the key technological innovations globally to address the COVID-19 pandemic. IEEE, the world’s premier electrical and electronic engineering professional organization, recognized me as a senior member in 2022.