Mathematical Modeling Lab, Science and Mathematics Faculty
College of Integrative Sciences and Arts, Arizona State University



  • Marisabel (left) Defended her PHD dissertation on May 04 2018.
    Max Manning (right), our youngest lab member (in addition to the special members Angelina-5 yrs old and Felicia-9 yrs old), 14 yrs old, obtained three associate degrees from MCC, May 11, 2018.





  • The group pictures in Fall 2017.





  • The group pictures in Summer 2017.



  • The group picture in Fall 2014 (from left to right): Marisabel Rodriguez, Sourav Kumar Sasmal, John McKay, Xiaohui Guo, Michael Lin, Yun Kang (PI), Krystal Blanco, Komi Messan, Talia Davies, Oyita Udiani, Jose Valenzuela.

  • Great News:

    Postdoctoral Research Associates:

      Dr. Derdei Bichara was a postdoctoral research associate at the Simon A. Levin Mathematical, Computational and Modeling Science Center at the Arizona State University. His research interests focus on population dynamics and mathematical modelling in epidemiology and immunology. I have been co-mentoring Derdei with Professor Carlos Castillo-Chavez. Dr. Derdei Bichara has started his assistant professor position at California State University (Fullerton) in August, 2016.

    Visiting Research Scholars:

    • Professor Na Tang will visit our lab during the academic year of 2017-2018 starting from August 2017. She is an Associate Professor of School of Mathematics Science, Huaiyin Normal University, China. She will work on mathematical models of social networks.

    • Ms. Cely González will visit our lab during the fall of 2017. She is a graduate student of INDICASAT-AIP, Panama. She will visit our Simon A. Levin Mathematical, Computational, and Modeling Sciences Center and work on a project entitled: “Modeling interactions between macroparasites (wasp and fly) and microparasites (Escovopsis sp.), within primitive fungus-growing ants (Apterostigma sp.) system”.

    • Professor Feng Rao is visiting our lab during the academic year of 2016-2017 starting from Dec 01 2016. She is an assistant professor in Department of Mathematics, Nanjing Tech University, Nanjing, 211816, China. She will work on mathematical models of social insects, ecological population dynamics, and epidemiology problems.

    • Professor Han Xiaoling visited our lab during the academic year of 2014-2015. She is a full professor from College of Mathematics and Statistics, Northwest Normal University, Lanzhou, Gansu, China. She is interested in mathematical modeling of social insects.

    • Professor Dingyong Bai visited our lab during the academic year of 2014-2015. He is a full professor from Scholl of Mathematics and Information Sciences, Guangzhou University, Guangzhou, China. He has been interested in mathematical modeling of biolgoical systems including biocontrol beetles, prey-predator models in seasonal environments.

    Current Graduate Students Involved in Research Projects:

    • Karen Funderburk is a first year graduate student in AMLSS Ph.D program at ASU, Tempe. Karen has been working with me on foraging dynamics of social ants.

    • Caleb Ignace is a first graduate student in AMLSS Ph.D program at ASU, Tempe. Caleb has been working with me on mathematical modeling of emerge behavior in social insect colonies.

    • Armando Salinas is a second year graduate student in AMLSS Ph.D program at ASU, Tempe. Armando has been working with me on mathematical modeling of nonlinear hierarchy social structure in social insect colonies. Armando is also interested in modeling population dynamics of honeybees.

    • Jun Chen is a second year graduate student in AMLSS Ph.D program at ASU, Tempe. Jun has been working with me on mathematical modeling of social network structure (including task switching) in social insect colonies.

    • Michael Lin is a fourth year graduate student in Applied Mathematics for the Life and Social Sciences (AMLSS) at ASU, Tempe. His research projects are developing spatial-temporal social network models with divison of labor for social insects; and ant-track software.

    • Xiaohui Guo is a fourth year graduate student in Animal Behavior Ph.D Program of School of Life and Sciences (SoLS) at ASU, Tempe. Dr. Fewell is his primary advisor, and I co-chair with Dr. Fewell regarding the mathematical modeling aspects of Guo's research. Guo has been performing experiments and developing Individal Based Models for spatial and temoporal dynamics of social interaction network and information flow in ants.

    • Marisabel Rodriguez is a fifth year graduate student in Applied Mathematics Ph.D Program of School of Mathematical & Statistical Sciences (SoMSS) at ASU, Tempe. Her research projects are ecological and evolutionary models of social ants with egg cannibalism and division of labor.

    • Jordan Bates is a fifth year Ph.D student in AMLSS at ASU, Tempe. His research topic is Measurement, Inference, and Simulation of Student Social Dynamics. (Expected to graduate Spring 2018).

    • Baltazar Espinoza Cortes is a fifth year Ph.D student in AMLSS at ASU, Tempe. His research topic is Heterogeneity and Mobility Effects in Disease Dynamics. (Expected to graduate Spring 2018).

    Gradutated PHD(s):

    • Dr. Komi Messan successfully defended his PHD dissertation (Prey-predator “Host-parasite” Models with Adaptive Dispersal: Application to Social Animals) on Nov 03, 2017. Komi Komi will start his job as Research Mathematician with the Cold Regions Research and Engineering Laboratory of the US Army Engineer Research and Development Center starting January 2018.

    • Oyita Udiani successfully defended his PHD dissertation (A Mathematical Study of Social Dynamics And Its Consequences for Task Organization in Animal Groups) on Oct 21, 2016. Oyita obtained NSF postdoctoral fellowship and will join NIMBIOS in Feb 2017.

    • Dr. Sourav Kumar Sasmal graduated from the Indian Statistical Institute (Kolkata) in 2015. His Ph.D thesis was Mathematical Studies on Allee Effect in Interactive Population. I co-chaired his Ph.D  with Professor Joydev Chattopadhyay. Currently, Dr. Sasmal is a Post-Doctoral Fellow at Agricultural and Ecological Research Unit of Indian Statistical Institute, Kolkata.

    Current Undergraduate Students Involved in Research Projects:

    • Jeffrey Chien is a third year Barrett the Honors College student majoring in Engineers. He has been developing individual based models on behavior that leads to shared hierarchical structural of social insect colonies and engaging in collecting data on Harpegnathos saltator for model validations.
    • Fatima Barat Ali is a third year Barrett the Honors College student majoring in Biology. She has been collecting data on Harpegnathos saltator and engaging mathematical modeling in behavior that leads to shared hierarchical structural of social insect colonies.
    • Lauren Engel: Her research project is to develop a agent-based model of evolution reproduction of harvest ants.
    • Jonny Woodbury and Tin Phan: Their research project is to model the dynamics of leaf cutter ants and their fungus garden with division of labor and egg cannibalism.
    • Alessandro Laspina: His research interest is to explore the application of social insects to engineer.
    • Annette Kirkland: Her research interest is to model the sports and nutrient of human body.
    • Benjamin Krakoff (from Yale University) and Jose Valenzuela (2014-current): Their research project is to model social interactions between different task groups of social insects. Jose has been presenting his research project in MAA, MathFest, 2014; and BEER-2014
    • Jared Scolaro and Mitchell Anhoury (2014-current): Their research project is to model division of labor of foundrass association in social ants by using Netlogo.

    Graduated/Past Students:

    • Jun Chen will obtain her Master in Pass in AMLSS in Spring 2018 from her work mathematical modeling of social network structure (including task switching) in social insect colonies.

    • Armando Salinas will obtain his Master in Pass in AMLSS in Spring 2018 from his work on mathematical modeling of nonlinear hierarchy social structure in social insect colonies.

    • Jennifer Rodriguez obtained her MS. degree from AMLSS in Spring 2017. Jennifer was working on the evolutionary models of social insects.

    • Krystal Blanco Krystal obtained her MS. degree from AMLSS in Fall 2016. on the project of Disease Dynamics of Social Animals. The related project on the honeybee disease work has been published in the journal of Mathematical Biosciences. Krystal is an analyst at Salt River Project, Phx, AZ.

    • Lorenzo Tapia obtained his MS degree from AMLSS in Spring 2016. His research projects were studying the spatial-temporal dynamics of biocontrol beetles. This was a collaboration with Dr. Heather Bateman from Sciences and Mathematics Unit of College Integrative Sciences and Arts, ASU, Poly. Lorenzo currently works with Medicare and Medicaid data to try and improve hospital care.

    • Talia Davis graduated from Barrett the Honors College student majoring in mathematics in 2015. Her honor thesis was mathematical modeling of disease dynamics in honeybees.

    • Stephen Evilsizor obtained his PHD in May 2016 from SoMSS at ASU, Tempe. Stephen has been working with me on two research projects related to modeling of social insects: (a) Ecological and evolutionary dynamics of a two-stage model with cannibalism; (b) The delay models of a two-stage model with cannibalism. Stephen currently works in financial sector.

    • Alejandra Mayoral defended her honor thesis on Analysis of Egg-Laying Rates of Harpegnathos Saltator Through Different Methods of Observation in Fall 2017. Alejandra is going to be getting a Master's Degree in Mathematics Education at Northern Arizona University Starting in Spring 2018.
    • Katherine Kincade defended her honor thesis in Fall 2016 on mathematical modeling of division of labor of foundrass association of ant queens. She is a fourth year Barrett the Honors College student majoring in mathematics and computer sciences. She will graduate in Fall 2017.
    • Adam Jones is a Barrett the Honors College student majoring in Engineer. His research project was to explore the topics of mathematical modeling of social insects and robotics.
    • Karishma Thakkar: Her research project was to develop mathematical models to study how disease spreads in the social ants colonies.
    • John Mckay graduated in December 2014 with his M.S. degree of AMLSS at ASU, Tempe. His master thesis topic is motif analysis and communication dynamics of social ants. He is currently a PH.D student in the Electrical Engineering program at Penn State.
    • Lauren Wedekin graduated in August 2012 with her M.S. degree of Applied Biological Sciences at ASU, Polytechnic. Her thesis is Mathematical Modeling of Intraguild Predation and its Dynamics in Ecology. She is currently working at Icon Laboratories.
    • Undergraduate-Michael Makiyama: His research project involved parameter estimations of biological systems based on available data and numerical simulations on spreading of allien species. He is a master student in Oregon State University.