Fabian Riether

Fabian Riether completed his master’s degree in Mechanical Engineering at MIT in 2016. His thesis demonstrated the potential of novel optimization algorithms for controlling high-dimensional stochastic systems such as  quadrotors. In 2014-2015, he worked with the Trancik Lab to investigate energy storage and consumption patterns in transportation and energy infrastructure to derive design rules and optimal policies. He received his B.Sc. in Engineering Cybernetics from the University of Stuttgart. Research projects in Stuttgart and Abu Dhabi focused on modeling and analyzing single-device man-machine systems. Before coming to MIT, Fabian worked on increasing the scalability of autonomous driving solutions in Silicon Valley. Currently, Fabian is pursuing a co-op MBA program at the Collège des Ingénieurs where he works as a Junior Consultant for Infineon Technologies.

Contact: friether at alum dot mit dot edu

Dr. Victor Ocaña

Victor Ocaña was a postdoctoral associate at the Institute for Data, Systems and Society (IDSS) at MIT. He received his physics diploma from the University of Zaragoza (Spain) and his PhD in Earth Science from the Max-Planck-Institute for Meteorology and the University of Hamburg (Germany), on optimal GHG emissions paths and the value of information. After a long hiatus away from science, he returned as a research scientist with Prof. Hans von Storch at the Helmhotz Zentrum Geesthacht (Germany) before coming to MIT.  He then worked as a postdoctoral associate in EAPS (Earth, Atmosphere and Planetary Sciences) at MIT, where he studied sea level variability and modeling of ice sheets.

Contact: vocana at mit dot edu

Dr. Zachary Needell

Zachary Needell completed his Ph.D. at the Interdepartmental Doctoral Program in Transportation at MIT. He received his M.S. in Transportation Engineering from MIT and his B.S. in Physics from Haverford College in 2011, where he did his thesis research on the deformation patterns of granular materials under stress. Before coming to MIT, he worked at the Smithsonian Center for Earth and Planetary Studies researching Martian sediments and climate history. His research interests are in how infrastructure and technology affect the decisions people make about their personal transportation, and how those individual choices affect long term environmental, economic, and social trends.

Contact: zneedell at mit dot edu


Dr. Bela Nagy

Bela Nagy was a postdoctoral fellow at the Santa Fe Institute. He has bachelor’s degrees in mathematics and computer science, and a Ph.D. in statistics from the University of British Columbia. More information on Bela’s interests and past experience can be found here: Nagy’s SFI webpage.

Shylesh Muralidharan

Shylesh Muralidharan was a Systems Design and Management graduate student at MIT. He received a B.S. in mechanical engineering from Pondicherry University and an MBA from Mumbai University, and he has worked in technology consulting for smart grid programs. His interests are in new energy systems and sustainability. He is currently working on a technical and economic evaluation of ocean thermal energy conversion in the context of climate change concerns and water scarcity.