Dr. Lili Du’s research integrates optimization, network modeling, machine learning, control, and data analytics approaches into transportation system analysis with the main focuses on autonomous vehicle (AV), connected vehicle (CV), connected and automated vehicle (CAV), and electric vehicle (EV) impacts, mobility on demand, network resilience, and traffic flow analysis. Du’s research has been published in Transportation Research Part B: Methodological, Transportation Research Part C: Emerging Technologies, Transportation Science, IEEE Transactions on ITS, Networks, and Spatial Economics, and has been funded by National Science Foundation (NSF), State DOT, STRIDE UTC, and Toyota InfoTechnology Center. Her recent project “Driverless City” won the First Nayar Prize at IIT. Dr. Du received the NSF CAREER award in 2016.

Dr. Du leads the UFTI Resilience and Sustainability Group, which brings together researchers with diverse expertise from transportation, coastal, environmental, electrical, and mechanical engineering, geography, urban planning, construction, and computer science. This research group seeks to develop innovative and applicable studies along two tracks: (1) transportation resilience to both natural disasters and extreme events, including rapid recovery from hurricanes, tornado, flood, sea-level rise, hazards, pandemics, electronic attacks, and other disruptions, and (2) sustainability solutions that consider ecological preservation, economic vitality, and social justice.

Dr. Du currently has three active National Science Foundation projects. Her NSF CAREER award will develop integrated online coordinated routing and decentralized control for connected vehicle systems to mitigate network traffic congestion. Another of Dr. Du’s NSF projects will study how a group of connected and automated vehicles (CAVs) can respond to exogenous disturbances resulting from human-driven vehicles, lane change requests, and abnormal traffic and cyber conditions through cooperative speed or acceleration control. Dr. Du was also awarded an NSF Smart & Connected Community planning grant to study curbside environments at the downtown and University of Florida campus communities in the City of Gainesville, Florida. The project investigates how to integrate vehicles, people, mobile devices, and physical and cyber infrastructures to coordinate curb space uses. The knowledge learned will be shared with local communities, who will benefit in the long term, to prepare city curbs for future burgeoning technology and mobility innovations.