Story in the School of Business
Information systems professor develops a model that predicts water distribution downtown.
Professor Manoochehr Ghiassi specializes in predicting the future.
A software he developed, involving complex computer modeling, can be used to predict, for example, how much electricity a community will be using on a particular Tuesday afternoon months from now.
His system was used to forecast urban water distribution in San Jose. And to identify the value of employee stock options several years in the future.
The far-seeing magic is based on artificial neural networks. Ghiassi is the director of the master's program in information systems (MSIS), a department focused on how businesses use computer information systems and analytical methods.
He says the students he works with—both undergraduates and graduates—learn a ton about the industry. It takes months for his research assistants to be ready to participate in his projects, but the effort pays off.
"I spend an enormous amount of time with each student," he says. "It's a one-on-one education, way beyond the classroom. After working with me, they are well prepared for professional work or for going to graduate school."