Divakaran Liginlal

Teaching Professor, Information Systems

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Divakaran Liginlal is a teaching professor of information systems at Carnegie Mellon University. Before joining CMU, Liginlal taught at three US universities, including nine years at the University of Wisconsin-Madison where he was a recipient of the Mabel Chipman Award for Faculty Excellence in Teaching and the Lawrence J. Larson Grant Award for Innovation in Curriculum Design. In 2013, he received the best teacher award at CMU's Qatar campus. As a graduate student, he received the University of Arizona Foundation Award for Meritorious Teaching.


Ph.D., Management Information Systems, University of Arizona

M.S., Computer Science, Indian Institute of Science

B.S., Telecommunication Engineering, CET, India

Area Of Expertise

Liginlal's research in information security, human-computer interaction, and decision support systems has been published in such journals as the Journal of Management Information Systems, Communications of the ACM, IEEE-TKDE, IEEE-SMC, the European Journal of Operational Research, Computers & Security, Decision Support Systems, Fuzzy Sets & Systems, IEEE Technology & Society, IJIM, and IRMJ. His teaching and research have been supported by organizations such as Microsoft Corporation, Hewlett Packard (HP), Cisco Systems, Cargill, Qatar Foundation, and the ICAIR at the University of Florida. Before he entered academia, Lal worked as a scientist developing test systems for onboard computers for the Indian Space Research Organization and as a software developer in Saudi Arabia.

Research Description

Liginlal’s research in information systems is grounded in the intersection of technology, strategy, and human decision processes. The first topic area involves human computer interaction, particularly focused on eye-tracking studies. He is currently leading a major funded project to study language effectiveness in Arabic e-commerce websites. The second topic area relates to innovation, particularly in the area of information security and market value creation. His collaborative work identifies the important drivers of increased demand and innovation in information security and studies the relationship between innovation and economic performance, a subject that has been understudied in this context. The third topic area involves studying the interrelationships between human cognitive processes and privacy breaches, specifically the examination of technology use and organizational practices in the context of regulatory compliance. 

Research Keywords

human computer interaction, business analytics, decision support systems, e-commerce

Useful Links


Journal papers 

R. Ahmad, L. Torlakova, D. Liginlal, R. Meeds, "Figurative Language in Arabic E-Commerce Text," International Journal of Business Communication (Conditionally Accepted)

S. Fass, R. Yousef, D. Liginlal, and P. Vyas, " Understanding Causes of Fall and Struck-by Incidents: What Differentiates Construction Safety in the Arabian Gulf Region?" Applied Ergonomic Journal, 58, 515-526, January, 2017.

D. Liginlal, R. Meeds, R. Ahmad and P. Gopinath, “Webpages as Cultural Expressions: A Study of Metaphor Use in Arab E-Commerce Web,” Journal of Global Information Technology Management (Accepted for Publication).'

L. Khansa, X. Ma, S. Kim, D. Liginlal, “Understanding Members' Participation in Online Question-and-Answer Communities: A Theory and Empirical Analysis,” Journal of Management Information Systems, 32 (2), 162-203, 2015.

D. Liginlal, I. Sim, L. Khansa, and P. Fearn, “Human error and HIPAA Privacy Rule compliance: An interpretive study using Norman’s action theory,” Computers and Security, 31 (2), 206-220, 2012.

L. Khansa and D. Liginlal, “Whither information security? Examining the complementarities and substitutive effects among IT and information security firms,” International Journal of Information Management, 32 (3), June 2012, 271-281.

L. Khansa and D. Liginlal, “Regulatory influence and the imperative of innovation in identity and access management,” Information Resources Management Journal, 25 (3), July – Sep 2012, 78-97.

I. Sim, D. Liginlal and L. Khansa, “Information privacy situation awareness: Construct and validation, Journal of Computer Information Systems, 53 (1), 2012.

L. Khansa and D. Liginlal, “Predicting stock prices from malicious attacks: A comparative analysis of vector autoregression and time-delayed neural networks,” Decision Support Systems, 51(4), pp.745-759, November, 2011.

T. James, L. Khansa, D. Cook and D. Liginlal, “Technology and U.S. politics,” IEEE Technology and Society, 30(1), pp. 20-27, 2011.

D. Liginlal, L. Khansa and S. Chia, “News in hand: A case study in investment options for mobile content services,” International Journal of Business Data Communications and Networking, 6 (1), pp.17-37, 2010.

L. Khansa, and D. Liginlal, “Quantifying the benefits of investing in information security,” Communications of the ACM, 52(11), November 2009.

D. Liginlal, I. Sim, and L. Khansa, “How significant is human error as a cause of privacy breaches? An empirical study and a framework for error management, Computers and Security, 28(3-4): pp. 215-228, May-June, 2009.

L. Khansa and D. Liginlal, “Valuing the flexibility of investing in security process innovations,” European Journal of Operational Research, 192 (1), pp. 216-235, January 2009.

Y. Chen and D. Liginlal, “A maximum entropy approach to feature selection in knowledge-based authentication,” Decision Support Systems, Vol. 46, Issue 1, December 2008, pp. 388-398.

Y. Chen and D. Liginlal, “Bayesian networks for knowledge-based authentication,” IEEE Transactions on Knowledge and Data Engineering, Vol. 19, No. 5, pp. 695-710, May 2007.

D. Liginlal, S. Ram, and L. Duckstein, “A fuzzy measure-theoretical framework for screening product innovations,” IEEE Transactions on Systems, Man, and Cybernetics-Part A: Systems and Humans, Vol. 36, No. 3, May 2006.

D. Liginlal and T. Ow, “Modeling attitude to risk in human decision processes: An application of fuzzy measures,” Fuzzy Sets and Systems, 157(23), December 2006.

D. Liginlal and T. Ow, “On policy capturing with fuzzy measures,” European Journal of Operational Research, 167(2), pp. 461-474, December 2005. 

Awards & Honors


  • Meritorious Teaching Award, Carnegie Mellon University’s Qatar campus, 2013.
  • Mabel W. Chipman Outstanding Faculty Teaching Award from the University of Wisconsin, Madison School of Business, 2007.
  • University of Arizona Foundation Award for Meritorious Teaching, 1998.
  • Lawrence J. Larson Curriculum Development Award 2004 (for innovation in information security curriculum design) from the Wisconsin School of Business.
  • Lawrence J. Larson Curriculum Development Award 2001 (for innovation in e-commerce curriculum design) from the Wisconsin School of Business.

University Service

Service at Carnegie Mellon University in Qatar

  • Set up and managed an Information Systems lab since 2010 to support undergraduate research and the requirements of elective courses such as web usability testing and web accessibility.
  • Setup an HCI lab in 2014 with two eye-trackers, face reader, 3D-printer, 3D-scanner, holographic display and a variety of I/O devices to support the needs of courses in the user experience content area.
  • Mentored undergraduate projects that won the top two prizes at the Meeting of the Minds, 2011 and Qatar National Vision Special Awards at the Meeting of the Minds, 2014, 2015 and 2016.
  • Lectured at IS outreach event to schools, organized family day & high school events.
  • Other department-level and college-level committee activities.


Outreach at Carnegie Mellon University in Qatar

  • Member of the advisory committee that proposed a strategy and design for Her Highness Sheikha Moza’s web presence.
  • Partnered with the Qatar Ministry of Interior to propose a design for Qatar’s drug prevention campaign website.
  • Partnered with the IT Department of Lusail, Qatar’s futuristic city, to develop student projects and a National Priority Research Project (NPRP) on decision support systems for safety management and sustainable development.
  • Currently partnering with Qatar University, and University of Wisconsin-Madison faculty to conduct eye-tracking studies of Arab e-commerce websites.
  • Partnering with Ministry of Culture, Qatar Museum Authority and Qatar University on a digital heritage project.
  • Working with MADA (Qatar Assistive Technology Center) to develop an executive certificate program on web accessibility and to audit Qatar’s organizational websites.


Service and outreach at UW-Madison School of Business

  • Set up an academic partnership with Oracle leading to the adoption of Oracle for the InfoSys courses in 1999. Created a partnership with the Division of Information Technology at UW-Madison that has served the School of Business database courses since 1999.
  • Served in a significant role to promote School of Business academic partnerships with Microsoft, HP, CISCO, and IBM. This resulted in donations of expensive software and equipment.
  • Set up an Information Systems Lab to support faculty research and the laboratory requirements of specialized courses such as e-business infrastructure and secure coding.
  • Significant role in setting up a high level computing lab aided by a gift from Cargill to support Information Systems courses.
  • Set up a virtual lab facility to teach telecommunications (was one of the five teaching and learning technology competition winners in UW-Madison in 2002) with support from the Division of Information Technology at UW-Madison.

Courses Taught

Application Design (Ruby on Rails)

User-centered Web Design

XML and Web Services Programming

Information Systems Milieux

Human-Computer Interface Design

Interaction Design for the Web

Mobile Web Development & Testing

Concepts of IS

Healthcare Analytics & Big Data

Information Security Management (MBA)

Building Secure Information Systems

Information Security Management

XML & Web Services Programming

Enterprise Networking Technologies

Business Data Communication

Building an E-Business Infrastructure

Business Data Communications

Data Structures and Algorithms

Introduction to MIS

Needs Analysis & Technology Evaluation

Computer Interface Design

Undergraduate Capstone Projects

Academic Projects

2015 SLATE-Q: Scaffolding Literacy in Academic and Tertiary Environments (With S.Pessoa, Lead PI and S.L. Mansar, PI), National Priorities Research Project, Qatar Foundation

2012 Eye-tracking Studies of Arab E-Commerce Websites (in collaboration with Qatar University) Lead PI of project, National Priorities Research Project, Qatar Foundation

2012 Capital equipment grant for HCI research and teaching, Qatar Foundation (NPRP)

2011 Technology-Enhanced Arabic Language learning (Co-recipient), Contributed to the 1st year of a 3-year project, Qatar Foundation (NPRP)

2011 Google TV Devices Grant, Google

2010 Android-Based Course Development Grant   Google

2010 Identity Management and Privacy, Qatar Foundation Seed Grant

2005 Curriculum Development Grant, Microsoft Corporation

2005 Engage Adaptation Award Grant, DOIT, UW-Madison

2005 Curriculum Development Grant, Wisconsin School of Business

2003 Research and Teaching of .NET Technologies, Microsoft Corporation

2002 Equipment for a Virtual Networking Lab, Cisco Systems

2002 Mobile Applications of .NET, Microsoft Corporation

2002 Curriculum Development Grant, Wisconsin School of Business

2002 Expert Systems For Jury Selection, ICAIR (University of Florida)

2002 Virtual Enterprise Network Laboratory, DOIT, UW-Madison

2002 Expert Systems for Jury Selection, Wisconsin School of Business

2001 .Netcentric Curriculum and Research Plan, Microsoft Corporation

2001 Mining New Product Ideas, UW-Madison Graduate School

2000 E-Services Technologies (with Raj Veeramani, Anne Miner), Hewlett Packard

CV / Resume