Pramod Viswanath


Coordinated Sciences Laboratory
Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Room 118, Coordinated Sciences Lab
1308 W. Main Street
Urbana, IL 61822

Phone: 217 244 8999


I am interested in working on complex engineering systems in a holistic and ground-up way -- from building models to designing algorithms to system solutions to entrepreneurial and industrial implementations. I am partial to the theoretical and conceptual aspects of the engineering problems I work on. Some of my current research projects:


  • Data center switching -- algorithms for fast circuit switching
  • Peer to peer networking -- deterministic algorithms with near optimal rate-delay guarantees under adversarial arrival/departures, Sigmetrics 2015.
  • Interactive computation -- fundamental impossibility results for distributed communication complexity ITCS 2016.


  • Differential privacy: staircase mechanism cut+replaces Laplace mechanism and universally improves utility, optimal composition theorems.
  • Metadata privacy: Rumor source hiding in social networks: Spy vs Spy formulation, Sigmetrics 2015 (best paper award).
  • Ventrilocation: making LTE phone calls without revealing your location (too precisely).

Machine Learning and NLP

  • Consistent estimation of mutual information for high dimensional real valued data
  • Causality strength measurement

Past: Wireless Communication

I have worked on algorithms for scheduling users in cellular networks, MIMO algorithms, interference management solutions and a variety of topics in wireless communication over a decade and a half of research. I was one of the early designers of Flash-OFDM, the first OFDM based cellular system (at Flarion Technologies) and coauthored a popular book on wireless communication.