Baroud is an assistant professor in the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering and the Littlejohn Dean's Faculty Fellow. Her work explores data analytics and statistical methods to measure and analyze the risk, reliability, and resilience in critical infrastructure systems. In particular, she has studied data-driven Bayesian methods to predict the occurrence of disruptive events in infrastructure systems and stochastically model the recovery process of the physically disrupted system as well as other interdependent and indirectly impacted systems. She also developed decision analysis tools to assess different preparedness and recovery investment strategies for the protection of civil infrastructures.
Baroud holds a Ph.D. in Industrial and Systems Engineering from the University of Oklahoma. She has a Master of Mathematics from the Department of Statistics and Actuarial Science at the University of Waterloo where she focused in her research on the application of statistics, particularly time series models, to analyze financial data. Prior to that, she obtained her B.S. in Actuarial Science from Notre Dame University, Lebanon.
In the summer of 2013, she had an internship with IBM at the Watson Research Center in Yorktown Heights, NY, and she spent the summers of 2014 and 2015 at the Summer Doctoral Institute organized by the Center for International Business Education and Research at the George Washington University. In Fall 2014, she was a visiting student scholar in the Department of Geography and Environmental Engineering at Johns Hopkins University, working with the Guikema Research Group.
Her work has twice been awarded the Best Paper Award in the Homeland Security Track of the Industrial and Systems Engineering Research Conference. In 2013, she was the recipient of the Student Merit Award of the Engineering and Infrastructure Specialty Group of the Society for Risk Analysis, she discusses one aspect of her research in this video that was produced for the award.
Baroud is part of the Infrastructure Resilience Division (IRD) in the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE). She is a member of the Society for Risk Analysis (SRA), the Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS), International Society for Bayesian Analysis (ISBA), Institute for Industrial Engineers (IIE), and the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE).
Areas of Expertise (12)
Interdependent Systems Data Analytics
Critical Infrastructure Modeling
Risk-informed decision analysis
Climate and Climate Change
Fall 2019 Chancellor's Public Voices Fellow (professional)
A semester-long program designed to expand Vanderbilt University’s global reach by amplifying the impact of faculty academic research.
Best Paper Award in the Homeland Security Track
Best Paper Award in the Homeland Security Track of the Industrial and Systems Engineering Research Conference.
Student Merit Award
Engineering and Infrastructure Specialty Group of the Society for Risk Analysis
University of Oklahoma: Ph.D.
University of Waterloo: M.Math.
Notre Dame University: B.S.
- American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE)
- Society for Risk Analysis (SRA)
- Institute for Operations Research and the Management Sciences (INFORMS)
- International Society for Bayesian Analysis (ISBA)
- Institute for Industrial Engineers (IIE)
- Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE)
Selected Media Appearances (10)
How Government Decisions Left Tennessee Exposed to Deadly Flooding
New York Times online
“These extreme weather events will become more intense and more frequent,” said Hiba Baroud, a professor of civil and environmental engineering at Vanderbilt University in Nashville who specializes in resilience. “We need to be more proactive, and think about ways to prevent or at least mitigate the impact of these events.”
Natural Disasters & Climate Change
NewsChannel 5 tv
We are seeing a lot more extreme weather patterns, but are those related to climate change? What can we do to mitigate the damage? On today's MorningLine we talk to Hiba Baroud, professor of civil & environmental engineering at Vanderbilt University to talk about possible solutions. Be sure to watch to learn more.
Vanderbilt expert urges government to prepare for extreme weather events
A Vanderbilt University extreme weather expert weighed in on the lessons from this year’s severe weather events. For instance, weather disasters were becoming more frequent, intense, and costly, according to Hiba Baroud, Assistant Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Vanderbilt University.
In aftermath of devastating floods, Germans wonder what more could have been done
Washington Post online
Hiba Baroud, an assistant professor of civil and environmental engineering at Vanderbilt University, said that early-warning systems and evacuation plans are “crucial” to saving lives during extreme weather events, especially storms and floods, but they need to constantly evolve.
Low insurance payouts after natural disasters push longtime residents from communities
It’s something Vanderbilt University’s Hiba Baroud says we’ve seen after many disasters in Nashville and across the country. “You have displaced people who either cannot afford to rebuild or they just end up not returning to their neighborhoods for other reasons,” Baroud said.
More dams will collapse as aging infrastructure can’t keep up with climate change
“A lot of the country’s infrastructure systems were built during a time when these kind of weather events were considered rare and didn’t present a significant threat,” said Hiba Baroud, a professor of civil and environmental engineering at Vanderbilt University.
‘Everything is gone’: Japan left reeling from worst storm in decades
The Independent online
“Economic impact in disasters can quickly cascade through different sectors of the economy,” says Hiba Baroud, a professor of civil and environmental engineering at Vanderbilt University. “Production can be affected either by direct impact from the disaster or through interdependent effects resulting from disruptions in the supply chain. “Local and national authorities need to account for all these aspects in assessing the damage to identify the best recovery strategy for the city.”
Japan Questions Flooding Defenses After Severe Weekend Typhoon
The Wall Street Journal online
“Warmer ocean temperatures and higher sea level are expected to intensify the impact of extreme weather events such as hurricanes and typhoons,” said Hiba Baroud, an assistant professor of civil and environmental engineering at Vanderbilt University. She said, however, that researchers don’t know yet whether the number of hurricanes is increasing.
Florida bridge that collapsed was touted as 'engineering feat come to life'
ABC News online
Hiba Baroud, an assistant professor of civil and environmental engineering at Vanderbilt University, does not have specific knowledge of the bridge that collapsed in Miami but told ABC News that there are "a number of reasons why a bridge might fail." "At this point, we would have to have a plan to go back and look at the design parameters that were used to design this bridge," Baroud told ABC News.
Rebuilding after disasters: 5 essential reads
The Conversation online
Modernizing infrastructure is expensive, but failing to do so is worse, writes Hiba Baroud, assistant professor of civil and environmental engineering at Vanderbilt: “The U.S. infrastructure was built according to high standards 50 years ago, but they are no longer enough to ensure protection from today’s extreme weather. Such weather events are becoming more frequent and more extreme. That has a severe impact on our infrastructure, as cascading failures through interdependent systems such as transportation, energy and water will ultimately adversely impact our economy and society.”
Selected Articles (3)
Selecting indicators for assessing community sustainable resilienceRisk Analysis
Leslie Gillespie‐Marthaler, Katherine Nelson, Hiba Baroud, Mark Abkowitz
2019 "Communities are complex systems subject to a variety of hazards that can result in significant disruption to critical functions. Community resilience assessment is rapidly gaining popularity as a means to help communities better prepare for, respond to, and recover from disruption."
A Bayesian kernel approach to modeling resilience-based network component importanceElsevier
Hiba Baroud and Kash Barker
2018 "The resilience of infrastructure networks is an increasingly important consideration in infrastructure planning and risk management. One aspect of resilience-based planning is determining which components in the network are most important to the resilience of the network."
Static and Dynamic Resource Allocation Models for Recovery of Interdependent Systems: Application to the Deepwater Horizon Oil SpillAnnals of Operations Research
MacKenzie, C. A., Baroud, H., & Barker, K.
2016 "Determining where and when to invest resources during and after a disruption can challenge policy makers and homeland security officials. Two decision models, one static and one dynamic, are proposed to determine the optimal resource allocation to facilitate the recovery of impacted industries after a disruption where the objective is to minimize the production losses due to the disruption."