Pop Lab

Mihai Pop
Professor, Department of Computer Science
Director, University of Maryland Institute for Advanced Computer Studies (UMIACS)

Brendan Iribe Center, Room 3134
8125 Paint Branch Dr., College Park, MD 20742
m.pop@acm.org, 301-405-7245 (301-405-SAIL)
IMPORTANT: Read before contacting me

Diversity matters!
Black Lives Matter!

The systemic racism and constant assaults on the well-being and lives of people of color in our country, and in the world, are just the tip of the iceberg: the proverbial canary in the coal mine. Hidden beneath the horrific events seen each day in the news are massive inequities enabled by, and due to people like me – computer scientists who yield weapons of math destruction.

It is within our power, AND OUR DUTY, to turn the tide. Inform yourself about the many inequities built into our society. Learn about the ways in which “objective” data and algorithms perpetuate these inequities. Apply your research skills to problems that have a positive societal impact. Refuse to work on problems, or with companies, government agencies, or data, that contribute to maintaining the status quo. And above all, start by correcting the many wrongs built into the practices and policies at your own institutions. Be an ally for those less privileged than you. Speak up in meeting and whenever you see bias and injustice. Even the smallest actions, when sustained, can enact lasting change.

My research is motivated by the data generated by high-throughput biological experiments. I am interested in both developing the necessary computational infrastructure for conducting biological research and in understanding the fundamental computational structure of the problems being solved. Most of my recent research has focused on the analysis of microbial communities – a scientific field called metagenomics – with a particular focus on the microbes that inhabit the human body. A detailed description of ongoing research in my lab is available on my Research page.