Multi-AGent Intelligent Complex Systems

If you are interested in collaborating with or joining our lab, please visit here.

Modern engineered systems are increasingly connected, with complex interactions among social and technical aspects, both during the design process and after fielding. While traditional engineering design has focused on designing an optimal technical artifact, there is an increasing recognition that social and organizational aspects of how designers collaborate and create, and how systems co-evolve with the human and built environments through use, are equally important drivers of value. Additionally, the rise of new sources of data and increased availability thereof creates many opportunities to extend design research into the sociotechnical realm.

In MAGICS Lab, we take a sociotechnical perspective towards the design and governance of complex engineering systems, bringing together elements of technical design, models of human behavior, and policy and regulation perspectives.



  • New paper in Nature Computational Science on social network drivers of the success of national covid policies.

  • New Paper @ JMD titled Dynamic Resource Allocation in Systems-of-Systems Using a Heuristic-Based Interpretable Deep Reinforcement Learning.

  • Paper accepted to Strategic Management Soceity Conference (SMS 2022) in London.

  • Congratulations to Qingtao Cao for giving an oral presentation @ IC2S2 2022

  • New Paper @ Scientific Data titled A multisource database tracking the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on the communities of Boston.

  • Congratulations Qingtao and Soum for receiving the college of engineering awards in research and teaching.

  • Prof. Heydari received the COE faculty fellow award.

  • New Lab member: Welcome Negin Maddah, Gabriele Ansaldo, and Nunzio Lore.


  • New Project: Prof. Heydari is a Co-PI of an IARPA project on creating predictive models of the pandemic using mobility data.

  • Three papers from MAGICS lab are accepted for oral presentation at CESUN2021.

  • New Paper and Media Reports: Our paper on the effect of short-term rentals on the social organization of neighborhoods is now published in PloS ONE. The paper was covered by several media channels, including Euronews, Wired, NPR, Boston Globe, BusinessInsider, and Dailymail. Boston.Com in particular published a comprehensive story on the findings.

  • Congratulations to Soum and Qiliang for successfully passing their oral qualifying exam in Spring 2021.

  • COVID-19 Social Distancing Paper Published in the Public Health Reports. Original Version of the paper with more results. Media Coverage. STAT (Link), World Economic Forum (Link), Northeastern News (Link). We also thank the Surgeon General of the United States for featuring our study on Twitter.

  • Congratulations to Qiliang Chen for publishing a paper on using Modularity in Reinforcement Learning in the ASME Journal of Mechanical Design.


  • Prof. Heydari is appointed as the chair of the scientific advisory committee for ETH-Singapore Future Resilient Systems Center.

  • Congratulations to Qingtao Cao on successfully passing his PhD proposal defense.

  • Soumyakant Padhee and Qingtao Cao gave two presentations at INFORMS 2020.

  • Prof. Heydari is elected as the chair of the Council of Engineering Systems Universities (CESUN).

  • Our paper on the link between Airbnb and Crime was presented at IC2S2 2020.

  • Prof. Heydari is appointed as an Associate Editor of the ASME Journal of Mechanical Design.