UVI Welcomes New Professor of Data Science Dr. Joanne Luciano

Dr. Joanne Sylvia Luciano

The University of the Virgin Islands welcomes Dr. Joanne Sylvia Luciano to its College of Science and Mathematics. She will work in the Department of Computer and Computational Sciences to develop curriculum in data science.

This multidisciplinary field blends data inference, algorithm development and technology in order to solve analytically complex problems. Data science is ultimately about using this data in creative ways to generate business value while being sensitive to and respectful of data privacy, data security, data stewardship and the ethical use of data. The incoming professor has so far proposed two new courses in health web science and will be teaching a special course in data science this spring.

“We are very pleased to have Dr. Luciano working with us. She has been working with a team of faculty from computer science, mathematics and business to submit a proposal to National Science Foundation (NSF) for support in developing interdisciplinary programs in data science,” said the Dean of College of Science and Mathematics Dr. Sandra Romano. “Their work is exciting and would provide some great opportunities in data science for our students. We’re very much looking forward to Dr. Luciano working with us on data science projects that will provide a lot of interesting opportunities for both faculty and students.”

Luciano is an experienced technology consultant to major hospitals, biotechnology and pharmaceutical companies. “The focus of my research is to create technologies that make it easy to do interdisciplinary by utilizing semantic technologies that maintain the context of data. There is an urgent need to shorten the time it takes to bring basic science research results to practice, and to get the clinical or field observations back to the research lab for further analysis,” she said. “To do this, technologies need to be in place that allow scientists to better represent, reuse, and communicate their data.”

Luciano has been a visiting associate professor at Indiana University since 2016. During her tenure, she developed the curriculum for graduate courses in data science such as Data Science for Drug Discovery, Health and Translational Medicine, Real World Data Science with Eli Lilly and Company, Applied Data Science as well as independent study courses with graduate students while she continued her research in health web science and precision medicine.

Dr. Luciano was a research associate professor and deputy director of the Web Science Research Laboratory at Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, 2010-2013. While there, she founded the field of Health Web Science, initiated a multidepartment collaboration to integrate state-of-the-art technologies to deliver a personalized response to depression, a major health burden, and co-taught graduate courses in advanced semantic technologies and semantic e-science.

Luciano is a graduate of Boston University in Boston, Mass., where she obtained a Ph.D. in cognitive and neural systems in 1996, a Master of Science degree in Computer Science in 1987 and a Bachelor of Science degree in Computer Science in 1982.
Dr. Luciano’s teaching experience spans over 41 years across Indiana University Bloomington, Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Boston University, Metropolitan College and Boston University, College of Arts and Sciences.

Her wealth of research experience has also been from the professional domain. Over the past four decades, she has held directorship positions in both corporate and academic institutions from as early as 1982; she has 15 years of service on several academic and professional boards between 2003-2018; she was the lead author of a book entitled “Health Web Science;” she has two U.S. patents, published over 50 peer-reviewed research articles, book chapters, ontologies, presentations, tutorials and information artifacts. Also, Luciano is on the Advisory Board of “We Did It For You! Women’s Journey through History.”