Profile image of Kang Zhao
Henry B. Tippie Research Fellow



  • Associate Professor of Business Analytics

    Tippie College of Business

  • Henry B. Tippie Research Fellow

  • Faculty Director, Master's in Business Analytics


  • PhD in Information Sciences and Technology, The Pennsylvania State University, 2012
  • MS in Computer Science, Eastern Michigan University, 2006
  • BE in Electrical and Information Engineering, Beijing Institute of Technology, 2003

Areas of Interest

  • Data mining for social networks and social media, Data Science, Business Analytics, Supply-chain networks, Agent-based models.

Selected Awards & Honors

  • Best Student Paper Nominee, INFORMS Data Science Workshop, 2021
  • Best Paper Runner-Up, INFORMS Data Science Workshop, 2020
  • Best Paper Award, INFORMS Data Science Workshop, 2017
  • Early Career Research Award, Tippie College of Business, 2016
  • R.W. Graham Endowed Graduate Fellowship, Penn State University, 2007

Selected Publications

Selected Presentations

  • Graham, A. L. & Zhao, K. (2018, December) Social Dynamics of Substance Use in Online Social Networks for Smoking Cessation. Seminar Washington, District of Columbia.
  • Zhao, K. (2018, January) Online and Off the Web--Analyzing User Behaviors and Health Outcome in Online Health Communities. Conference Presentation presented at The 6th International Conference on Smart Health (ICSH'18), Wuhan, China.
  • Zhao, K. (2016, March) Concurrent Diffusions of Information and Behaviors in Online Social Networks. Oral presented at 2016 Winter Conference on Business Intelligence, Utah.
  • Wang, X. & Zhao, K. (2015, March) Predicting User Engagement in Online Health Communities Based on Social Support Analysis. Oral presented at 2015 Winter Conference on Business Intelligence, Utah.
  • Graham, A. L. & Zhao, K. (2015, January) Social Dynamics of Substance Use in Online Social Networks for Smoking Cessation. Lecture presented at VA Innovations in Healthcare Informatics Cyberseminar.
  • Zhao, K., Wang, X. & Street, N. (2014, August) Users' roles and involvement in online health communities--a social support perspective. presented at 16th International Conference on Electronic Commerce (ICEC 2014), Philadelphia, Pennsylvania.
  • Wang, X. & Zhao, K. (2014, June) Users’ Roles and Involvement in Online Health Communities —a Social Support Perspective. Oral presented at The 8th China Summer Workshop on Information Management (CSWIM 2014), Chengdu, China.
  • Wang, X. & Zhao, K. (2014, March) Understanding Social Support and User Behaviors in Online Health Communities. Oral presented at Winter Conference on Business Intelligence, Snowbird, Utah.
  • Zhao, K. (2013, July) Sentiment influence and influential users in online health communities. Oral presented at 3M Computaonal Intelligence colloquium, St Paul, Minnesota.
  • Zhao, K. (2013, May) Role Identification - Influential users and community leadership. Oral presented at International Conference on Social Intelligence and Technology, University Park, Pennsylvania.

Selected Grants & Contracts

  • Zhao, Kang (Co-Principal), Graham, Amanda L (Co-Principal) Social Dynamics of Substance Use in Online Social Networks for Smoking Cessation. Sponsored by National Cancer Institute, NIH. Funded. September 1, 2014 - August 1, 2017.
  • Zhao, Kang (Principal Investigator) Old Gold Summer Fellowship. Sponsored by The University of Iowa. January 1, 2012.
  • Zhao, Kang (Principal Investigator) Network Science Exploration Research Grant. Sponsored by Penn State University. Funded. January 1, 2010 - January 1, 2011.

Professional Service

  • 2022 INFORMS Annual Meeting, Organization Commitee, Member, January 2022.
  • 2020 INFORMS Data Science Workshop, Co-Chair, January 2020.
  • 2019 INFORMS Data Science Workshop, Program Committee, Program Co-chair, January 2019.
  • INFORMS College on Artificial Intelligence, Chair, November 2016 - October 2016.
  • IEEE International Conference on Healthcare Informatics 2016, Chair of the Doctoral Consortium, January 2016.
  • INFORMS College on Artificial Intelligence, Cluster Chair, January 2013.

Editorial & Review Activities

  • ACM SIGKDD Conference on Knowledge Discovery and Data Mining, Referee.
  • Decision Support Systems, Associate Editor.
  • Decision Support Systems, Referee.
  • Electronic Commerce Research and Applications, Associate Editor.
  • Information and Management, Referee.
  • Information Systems Research, Referee.
  • INFORMS Journal on Computing, Referee.
  • Journal of Management Information Systems, Referee.
  • Journal of Operations Management, Referee.
  • Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association, Referee.