Andrea Tapia

Associate Professor of Information Sciences and Technology
(814) 865-1524
307B Information Sciences and Technology Building
College of Information Sciences and Technology

Ph.D., Sociology, University of New Mexico, Albuquerque, New Mexico, 2000

Tapia's expertise is social research methods and social theory, her training is in sociology, and she applies this expertise and training to the study of information and communication technologies (ICT) and their context of development, implementation and use. She is an elected leader in both of my home academic communities, the American Sociological Association and the International Association for Information Systems for Crisis Response and Management. Her international reputation is visible in the following:  organizing and leading two large and two small international workshops and conferences; $3.7 million in external funding that has resulted in 12 completed MS and PhD theses; 40 journals articles, 60 peer-reviewed conference proceedings, and 12 book chapters She has been an invited speaker at 31 conferences or events and presented at 73 conferences. Tapia's teaching is showcased in the 12 different courses she has led for her College at the undergraduate, Honors and graduate levels. She has served as chair of 16 graduate student committees, 6 master’s theses and 10 Ph.D. dissertations. Seven of these ten Ph.D. students have already graduated and gone on to take jobs in the academe or industry. She has also served on 50 graduate student committees and expectsthis trajectory to continue in the coming years.

The contribution of her scholarship is carried forward through detailed studies of critical social problems in today’s world, with a specific focus on the take-up, uses, and effects of information and communication technologies relative to public social issues. The results of her work have contributed directly to the policy-making bodies of the United Nations, the Obama Administration, and the largest international relief and development organizations globally. All of my recent work investigates the great potential role that social media data might play in local community resilience, crowdsourced early warning systems, and the organized response to emergencies and disasters. 


Case, N. A., MacDonald, E. A., Heavner, M., Tapia, A., & Lalone, N. (2015). “Mapping Auroral Activity with Twitter”. Geophysical Research Letters. DOI: 10.1002/2015GL063709

Case, N. A., E. A. MacDonald, Tapia, A. and K. G. Patel (2015), “Aurorasaurus and the St Patrick’s Day storm”, Astronomy & Geophysics, 56 (3).

Hughes, A. L., Tapia, A. (2015), “Social Media in Crisis: When Professional Responders Meet Digital Volunteers”. Journal of Homeland Security and Emergency Management, DOI: 10.1515/jhsem-2014-0080.

Tapia, A. and LaLone, N. (2014), “Crowdsourcing Investigations: Crowd Participation in Identifying the Bomb and Bomber from the Boston Marathon Bombing“. International Journal of Information Systems for Crisis Response and Management (IJISCRAM). Vol. 6, Issue 4.

Tapia, A. and Moore, K. (2014), “Good Enough is Good Enough: Overcoming Disaster Response Organizations’ Slow Social Media Data Adoption Special Issue on Technologies for Disaster Response”. Journal of Computer Supported Cooperative Work. Volume 23, Issue 4-6, pp 483- 512, Online First, Springer DOI: 10.1007/s10606-014-9206-1

Ngamassi, L., Maitland, C., & Tapia, A. (2013) “Humanitarian Inter-organizational Information Exchange Network: How Do Clique Structures Impact Network Effectiveness?” Voluntas: International Journal of Voluntary and Nonprofit Organizations.  (DOI) 10.1007/s11266-013-9403-4

Ngamassi, L.M., Maitland, C.L., Tapia, A.,  and Kvasny, L. (2013) “Humanitarian Inter-organizational Collaboration Network: Investigating the Impact of Network Structure and Information and Communication Technology on Organization Performance” (IJSTM). Int. J. Services Technology and Management, Vol. 19, Nos. 1/2/3, 2013

Tapia, A. Ngamassi, L.M., Maldonado, E. Maitland, C.L., (2013), “Crossing Borders, Organizations, Levels and Technologies: IS Collaboration in Humanitarian Relief” Information Technology for International Development. Volume 9, Number 1, Spring 2013, 1–17.

Saab, D. Tapia, A. Maldonado, E., Ngamassi, L.-M.N.; Zhao, K.; Maitland, C.;  (2013) “Inter-organizational Coordination in the Wild: Trust-Building and Collaboration among Field Level ICT Workers in Humanitarian Relief Organizations“. Voluntas: International Journal of Voluntary and Nonprofit Organizations, Volume 24, Number 1, Pages 194-213.

Tapia, A., Maldonado, E., Maitland, C., & Ngamassi, L. . (2012) “Coordinating Humanitarian Information: The Problem of Organizational and Technical Trajectories”.  Journal of Information Technology and People. Volume 25 Issue 3.  *** Outstanding Paper Award Winner at the Literati Network Awards for Excellence 2013.