Headshot of Paul Torrens


Dr. Paul M. Torrens is a Professor in Department of Computer Science and Engineering in the Tandon School of Engineering, and Professor of Urban Informatics in the Center for Urban Science + Progressat New York University, where he and his students work on the development and application of modeling and simulation tools for exploring and explaining complex urban systems, intricacies of behavior at the interface between cities and people, and emerging cyberinfrastructure for urban spaces and places. Paul is also Director of Geosimulation Labs, LLC, a research and development consultancy.

In previous appointments, Paul was on the faculty of the School of Geographical Sciences and Urban Planning at Arizona State University, and in the Department of Geographical Sciences and Institute for Advanced Computer Studies (UMIACS) at the University of Maryland, College Park, where he was the founding Director of the Center for Geospatial Information Science.

Paul holds a Ph.D. from University College London (2004), Master’s degrees from Trinity College Dublin (1999) and Indiana University (1998), and a Bachelor’s degree from Trinity College Dublin(1996). Paul’s research has been featured in the popular press in 14 countries, in a diverse array of outlets, from Vanity Fair and Il Corriere della Sera to Wired and Discover Magazine. He is a member of the Editorial Boards of the Annals of the Association of American Geographers, Future Internet, Applied GeographyLecture Notes in MechanicsGeojournalProgress in Planning, and ACM Transactions on Spatial Algorithms and Systems. His projects have been supported by the U.K. Economic and Social Research Council, the U.S. National Science Foundation, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration, the National Institutes of Health, the Herberger Foundation, Science Foundation Arizona, and the RAND Corporation. His work has also been supported by a range of companies, including Autodesk, Inc., Alias Research, and the Ford Motor Company.

His work earned him a Faculty Early Career Development Award from the U.S. National Science Foundation in 2007 and he was awarded the Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (details) by President George W. Bush in 2008. The Presidential Early Career Award is the highest honor that the U.S. government bestows upon young scientists; Torrens is the first geographer to receive the Award.