Keynote Speakers

H. Raghav Rao, Ph.D

Dr. H.R. Rao was named the AT&T Distinguished Chair in Infrastructure Assurance and Security at The University of Texas at San Antonio College of Business in January 2016. He also holds a courtesy appointment as full professor in the UTSA Department of Computer Science. He graduated from Krannert Graduate School of Management at Purdue University. His interests are in the areas of management information systems, decision support systems, e-business, emergency response management systems and information assurance. He has chaired sessions at international conferences and presented numerous papers. He also has co-edited four books, including Information Assurance Security and Privacy Services and Information Assurance in Financial Services. He has authored or co-authored more than 200 technical papers, of which more than 125 are published in archival journals.

In November 2016, Professor Rao received the prestigious Information Systems Society Distinguished Fellow Award (Class of 2016) for outstanding intellectual contributions to the information systems discipline.

Rao’s work has received best paper and best paper runner up awards at ISR, AMCIS and ICIS. He has received funding for his research from the National Science Foundation, the Department of Defense and the Canadian Embassy. He also received the Fulbright fellowship in 2004.

Rao is chair of IFIP WG 8.11/11.13, the working group for Information Systems Security Research. He is co-editor in chief of Information Systems Frontiers, advisory editor of Decision Support Systems, associate editor of ACM TMIS and senior editor at MIS Quarterly.

He has placed Ph.D. students at Sogang U, UNCG, ASU, USF, FAU, MSU, OK State, FSU, Penn State, University of Warwick and others.

Rao was ranked No. 3 in publication productivity internationally in a 2011 Communications of the Association for Information Systems study. In March 2017, Rao’s h-index was 50 and his i-10 index was 144. He is a graduate of the FBI Citizens Academy.

Research Interests

  • Management information systems
  • Decision support systems
  • E-business
  • Emergency response management systems
  • Information assurance

Selected Publications

  • Coping Responses in Phishing Detection: An Investigation of Antecedents and Consequences (J. Wang, Y. Li, H. R. Rao), Vol 28, No 2, June, pp.378-396, Information Systems Research, 2017.
  • Overconfidence in Phishing Email Detection (J. Wang, Y. Li, H. R. Rao), Journal of the Association for Information Systems, 17, (11), 2016.
  • Moore, J. C., H. Raghav Rao and A. B. Whinston, “Information Processing for a Finite Resource Allocation Mechanism.” Economic Theory, 1996.
  • Rao, H. Raghav, A. Chaudhury and M. Chakha, “Modeling Team Processes: Issues and a Specific Example.” Information Systems Research, 1996.
  • Nam, K., A. Chaudhury and H. Raghav Rao, “A Mixed Integer Model of Bidding Strategies for Outsourcing.” European Journal of Operational Research, 1995.
  • Rao, H. Raghav, V. S. Jacob, and F. Lin, “Hemispheric Specialization, Cognitive Differences and Their Implications for Decision Support.” MIS Quarterly, June 1992.

Dr. Saad Al Barrak

Dr. Saad Al Barrak is a distinguished engineer and businessman of international repute.

He holds a BSc in Electrical Engineering, an MSc in Systems Engineering, both from Ohio University, and a PhD in Information Systems & Technology Management from the University of London.

He is also an alumnus of Harvard University. Since his appointment in 2002 and under his tutelage, Zain’s (formerly MTC) customer base has increased from 600,000 in Kuwait to a conglomerate of 22 operations with over 63.54 million active customers across the Middle East and Africa.

In this period, Zain's market capitalization on the Kuwait Stock Exchange has increased from less than US$2.5 billion to exceed $10 billion by December 31, 2008. Prior to his appointment with MTC,

Dr. Al Barrak was Managing Director of International Turnkey Systems (ITS), one of the leading IT companies in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region. Under him, ITS’s revenues grew from $5 million in 1985 to exceed $100 million in 2000.

Dr. Al Barrak resigned as CEO of Zain Group in 2010 and later gave up also the position of CEO, Zain KSA.

Dr. Al Barrak was Vice-Chairman of the Social Development Office (SDO) of the Amiri Diwan in Kuwait; Chairman of Egyptian software developer ITSoft; Chairman of Arab Telecom; and a non-executive Director of Arab Management Association in Cairo.

In 2005 he received the Middle East’s ‘CEO of the Year’ award in the Information Communication Technology sector, and in 2003 he received the ‘e-Businessman of the Year’ award in the region.

He also received the 2007 Lifetime Achievement Award from leading industry magazine COMMSMEA.

September 2012, he was given the “Outstanding Contribution to Business Award" at the 2012 CEO Middle East Awards held in Dubai.

Dr Al-Barrak was an Executive Board Member of Celtel International and an ex-Member of the Board of the GSM Association.

He is currently an Advisory Board Member of the UNDP in Kuwait as well as a member of the International University of Africa, Khartoum.

He is at present the Executive Chairman of ILA Group, with offices in Bahrain, Egypt and Kuwait. He is an Advisory Board Member, LAP GreenN, Green Networks, Dubai, UAE. He has also become the Chairman of Hits Telecom in mid-2016.

Since early 2014, he has been a member of the Supreme Civil Aviation Council, Kuwait Government.

Dr Al Barrak launched his 272 page biography, "A Passion for Adventure-Turning Zain into a Telecom Giant'' published by the global publishing group, Bloomsbury, followed by an Arabic version.