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Heng Xu Professor Info Technology & Analytics

Send email to Heng Xu
KSB - Information Technology
New Mexico (3201) - 320
Additional Positions at AU
Director, Kogod Cybersecurity Governance Center
Dr. Heng Xu is a Professor of Information Technology and Analytics in the Kogod School of Business at the American University, where she also serves as the Director of the Kogod Cyber Governance Center. Before joining Kogod in 2018, she had a mix of academic and government background, serving as a faculty member at Penn State for 12 years, as well as being a program director at the National Science Foundation for 3 years. She has also served on a broad spectrum of national leadership committees including co-chairing the Federal Privacy R&D Inter-agency Working Group in 2016, and serving on the National Academies Committee on Open Science in 2017-2018.

Dr. Xu's research focuses on information privacy, data analytics, data ethics, and cybersecurity management. Her work has received many awards, including the National Science Foundation's CAREER award in 2010, and many best paper awards and nominations at various leading conferences. Her scholarly work has been published in premier outlets across various fields such as Psychology, Business, Computer Science, and Law, including Psychological Methods, Management Information Systems Quarterly (MIS Quarterly), Information Systems Research, Journal of Management, Proceedings of the ACM Conference on Human Factors in Computing Systems (CHI), University of Pennsylvania Journal of Constitutional Law, and many others. Her interdisciplinary research and education have been sponsored by many competitive grants from multiple funding agencies such as the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, National Institute of Health, National Science Foundation, and National Security Agency. Currently she serves as an associate editor at MIS Quarterly and IEEE Security & Privacy.
See Also
Kogod Cybersecurity Governance Center
Robust Analytics Lab
Google Scholar
For the Media
To request an interview for a news story, call AU Communications at 202-885-5950 or submit a request.


Spring 2020

  • ITEC-466 Cybersecurity Risk Management

Fall 2020

  • ITEC-467 Cybersecurity Governance

Scholarly, Creative & Professional Activities

Professional Services

Services for the Community-at-Large

  • Member (2014-2016): National Privacy Research Strategy Forum (developed and drafted the National Privacy Research Strategy, released by the White House in 2016)
  • Co-Chair (2016): Federal Privacy R&D Inter-agency Working Group, Networking and Information Technology Research and Development (NITRD) Program
  • Member (2017-2018): Committee on Toward an Open Science Enterprise, National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine

Editorial Board

  • Associate Editor, Management Information Systems Quarterly, 2018 - present
  • Associate Editor, IEEE Security & Privacy, 2020 - present

Selected Publications

Zhang, N., Wang, M., and Xu, H. (2020). "Disentangling Effect Size Heterogeneity in Meta-analysis: A Latent Mixture Approach," Psychological Methods, (in press).

Luo, X., Li, H., Hu, Q., and Xu, H. (2020). "Why Do Individual Employees Commit Malicious Computer Abuses? A Routine Activity Theory Perspective," Journal of the Association for Information Systems, (in press).

Xu, H., Zhang, N., and Zhou, L. (2020). "Validity Concerns In Research Using Organic Data," Journal of Management (46:7), 1257-1274.

Xu, H., and Zhang, N. (2019). "Privacy in Health Disparity Research," Medical Care (57), S172-S175.

Grants and Sponsored Research

  • Xu, H. (PI), and Zhang, N. (Co-PI). Situation-Aware Identification and Rectification of Regrettable Privacy Decisions, National Science Foundation, 2018-2022.
  • Zhang, N. (PI)., and Xu, H. (Co-PI). Theore: Theory-Driven Curation and Reusable Robustness Calculus of Social and Behavioral Sciences (SBS) Claims, Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency, 2019-2020. 
  • Chi, G.(PI), Xu, H. (Co-PI), Yin, J. (Co-PI), Van Hook, J. (Co-PI), and Plutzer, E. (Co-PI). The Generalizability and Replicability of Twitter Data for Population Research, National Science Foundation, 2018-2021. 
  • Xu, H. (PI), and Zhang, N. (Co-PI). Establishing and Boosting Confidence Levels for Empirical Research Using Twitter Data, National Science Foundation, 2018-2021.