Francisco Prieto Castrillo joins the BISITE research group at University of Salamanca.

His former position was as postdoctoral researcher at the New England Complex Systems Institute (NECSI), a centre which has been instrumental in the development of complex adaptive systems. Currently he is affiliated to MIT and to Harvard University. At MIT he collaborates with the Alex “Sandy” Pentland’s Human Dynamics Laboratory in the MIT-MediaLab. At the Harvard T. H. Chan School of Public Health, he analyses different problems related to social sciences using data mining techniques, machine learning and complex systems. Francisco will be a reasearcher in the MOVIURBAN project that is aimed at analyzing behavour patterns through sensor networks in smart cities. In particular, new algorithms for smart vehicles interaction based on social computing and swarm intelligence will be developed.

With a background in theoretical physics, Francisco Prieto Castrillo has worked in many, seemingly distant fields; statistical physics, artificial intelligence, smart energy networks and seismic engineering. The backbone of his involvement in all these activities is his enthusiasm for the analysis of the self-organization phenomena in complex systems. This includes the way a structure resists an earthquake or the patterns of collective social behaviour.

The path his academic career has taken was greatly influenced by Professor Jaques Heyman from the University of Cambridge. Since their meeting, Prieto´s interest in applied nonlinear dynamics was sparked; a new approach to the stability of old masonry structures could shed some light on a challenging problem; the stability of rocking objects. He was able to pursuit his studies in this field thanks to an EU scholarship he got as part of the “Young European Talents”.


After earning his doctorate CUM LAUDE degree in the Autonomous University of Madrid (UAM), he was leading the science and technology unit of Ceta-Ciemat Centre. This institution was created with the aim of investigating advanced technologies. In Ciemat, he   coordinated an interdisciplinary research group in complex systems and artificial intelligence. The group collaborated with several universities and leading international centres, such as CERN – to develop tools for the optimization of self-organized computer networks.

He has supervised and co-supervised several research studies. Among them a doctoral thesis on artificial intelligence that was given the Extraordinary Doctorate Award. He has also been an organiser of many prestigious scientific events and he actively works as a reviewer for specialized journals

Posted by Juan M. Corchado

Vicerrector de Investigación y Transferencia - Universidad de Salamanca // Vice President for Research and Technology Transfer - University of Salamanca

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