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See the Center for Risk Management of Engineering Systems' 25th Anniversary Celebration


UVa’s School of Engineering and Applied Science (SEAS) is internationally recognized for its outstanding emphasis on risk, uncertainty, and reliability. This field is a significant existing thrust of engineering research and education at UVa and across the nation. The assessment and management of risk, uncertainty, and reliability are critical to the success of any engineering venture today.

The mission of UVa’s Center for Risk Management of Engineering Systems (the Center) is to develop theory, methodology, and technology to assist in the management of risk for a variety of engineering systems. Industry and government sponsors of research at the Center contribute their unique strengths and interests. They share their experience and work closely with faculty and students on a broad range of ongoing projects. Center areas of expertise include the following:

  • Collaborative risk modeling and assessment
  • Large-scale and complex hierarchical systems
  • Critical infrastructure protection
  • Defense and civil infrastructure systems
  • Infrastructure interdependencies, including multiregional and cross-regional analysis
  • Geographic information system (GIS)-based analyses
  • Strategic preparedness and regional resilience
  • Multimodal transportation planning and transportation safety
  • Business and operations decisionmaking and processes
  • Digital identity management in emergency response
  • Information assurance and Command, Control, Communications, Computers, Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (C4ISR)
  • Safety- and mission-critical systems
  • Transportation systems
  • Computer-based systems, including hardware and software performance and reliability
  • Reliability modeling of multiple failure modes in complex systems
  • Environmental impacts
  • Water resources and technology management

The Center is unique in many ways, including:

  • Its cross-disciplinary range within and beyond engineering.
  • It is one of the few in the country to apply risk assessment and management to engineering and technology-based systems.
  • Experienced since 1987, the Center is in a strategic position to evaluate and manage risk in a broad scope of technology-based systems.


Theory and methodology that have been developed and deployed at the Center include:

  • Multiobjective tradeoff analysis through the Surrogate Worth Tradeoff (SWT) method
  • Risk of extreme and catastrophic events with the Partitioned Multiobjective Risk Method (PMRM)
  • Multi-dimensional and multi-perspective modeling through the Hierarchical Holographic Model (HHM)
  • Risk prioritization with the Risk Filtering, Ranking, and Management (RFRM) method
  • Multi-stage, multiobjective decisionmaking for extreme events through the Multiobjective Risk Impact Analysis Method (MRIAM)
  • Leontief-based Inoperability Input-Output Model (IIM) and its derivatives for infrastructure interdependencies
  • Project risk management
  • Software risk management
  • Reliability analysis and critical systems safety
  • Preparedness and resilience of infrastructures for natural and man-made hazards


The Center draws together faculty from the School of Engineering and Applied Science, the Darden School of Business, the College of Arts and Sciences, and other units of the University to address cross-disciplinary risk-based government- and industry-sponsored studies. Such joint activities lead to: interacting with graduate students and faculty; exchanging knowledge and ideas at workshops; consulting informally with faculty on technical and other issues; attending tutorials and workshops;  welcoming outside staff and professionals to the University of Virginia; sharing technical reports, articles, and publications; accessing software tools; and advancing the state of knowledge and the cutting edge of research on risk management.