Former University of Hawaii-Hilo’s Interim Vice Chancellor to Lead Homeland Security Research Center

In a joint announcement made by the USC Viterbi School of Engineering and the School of Policy, Planning, and Development, Stephen C. Hora was named the new director of USC’s Center for Risk and Economic Analysis of Terrorism Events (CREATE), the nation’s first Department of Homeland Security Research Center of Excellence.

Stephen C. Hora

Stephen C. Hora

Established in 2004 and renewed in 2007, CREATE supports research in response to the threat of terrorism. A model of interdisciplinary collaboration – thus the engineering-planning and policy partnership – CREATE continues to break new ground in applying advanced risk, decision and economic analysis and modeling tools to evaluate the costs and consequences of terrorism.

Hora is a prominent decision analyst who has led several CREATE studies and is an experienced academic leader who served as the University of Hawaii-Hilo’s interim vice chancellor for academic affairs from 2005-07. He is a professor of management science and statistics at UH-Hilo. He earned both his Doctor of Business Administration and his bachelor’s degree from USC. He will hold a research professor appointment at USC.

The Department of Homeland Security selected USC as the site for CREATE from among 71 competing proposals. CREATE develops predictive models that gauge how and where terrorist events might occur, estimates the economic consequences of such attacks and identifies where the country’s vulnerabilities reside. A study by the center helped California strategically allocate infrastructure protection funds received from the Department of Homeland Security.

In addition, a CREATE-funded research team led by USC professor Milind Tambe developed randomization software for vehicle checkpoints at airports with significant success.

To date, CREATE has generated 256 publications and reports on biological threats, border security and seaport vulnerabilities.

One Response

  1. I knew Professor Hora when I went to UHH in the 1980s, and it’s not surprising he was picked for the position. He’s a very astute mathematician and statistician (he took the unusual academic track of going straight from a bachelor’s to a doctorate degree) who was involved in research that correctly predicted the vulnerability of the Space Shuttle program prior to the Challenger disaster in 1986.

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