Uttara Madurai Ananthakrishnan

PhD Candidate
Heinz College
Carnegie Mellon University
email: uttara@cmu.edu
Address: 3032, Hamburg Hall,
5000 Forbes Ave, Pittsburgh PA, 15213





I am a PhD candidate at Carnegie Mellon University. I am currently in the fifth year of my program. I am interested in studying how technology changes the traditional market place and how this impacts the way consumers make decisions. My research sits at the intersection of Technology, Economics and Policy. In my research, I combine Social Science techniques to understand the drivers of online consumer behavior, with Machine Learning techniques to develop managerially relevant responses for technology enabled changes in consumer behavior. My primary advisor is Prof. Michael D.Smith .

Prior to joining the PhD program, I worked at Google for three years. In this period, I was a part of the Google+ team where I analyzed the sharing patterns of users and developed signals to automate spam and abuse detection on Google+ and the associated social products of Google. I also worked with the policy team in developing Google’s policies towards harassment on its social platform. I worked on numerous projects to improve product quality, ensure appropriate abuse protection and enhance user experience. This required me to work closely with multiple-stakeholders such as cross-functional policy, legal, product, sales and engineering teams. Prior to Google+, I worked in the Risk Operations team where I identified fraudulent trends on Google Products.

I received my Bachelor of Engineering in Electronics and Communication Engineering from Anna University, India in 2010, where I was awarded the Best Outgoing Student prize. I received the Rajiv Gandhi Summer Research Fellowship by Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research during the summer of 2008 and interned at the Indian Institute of Science. I also received a merit scholarship for professional studies from Central Board of Secondary Education during all four years of my undergraduate education. I was ranked first among 88,908 candidates in the state who appeared for the 10th Standard Matriculation exam in 2004. In 2003, I received the Race For Awareness And Knowledge Award from Air India and traveled to Singapore as a part of a cultural exchange program.