Raffaele Vardavas

Photo of Raffaele Vardavas
Mathematician; Professor, Pardee RAND Graduate School
Santa Monica Office


M.Sci. and Ph.D. in physics, Imperial College London


Raffaele Vardavas is a mathematician at the RAND Corporation. His expertise is primarily in constructing and analyzing epidemic models for the spreading of infectious disease using both deterministic and stochastic methods and using both population-level and agent-based models. He is especially interested in problems in socio-economic dynamical systems that involve a contagion process, social networks, criticality, and agents that have adaptable behavior and tendency to “free-ride”. Prior to joining RAND, he was a post-doctorate researcher at UCLA in the applied mathematics and after in the bio-math department. At RAND he has worked on quantitative modeling projects. Some examples are: Modeling smallpox outbreaks and control options via both a differential equation model and a micro-simulation model; Modeling the dynamic interplay between influenza vaccination behavior, seasonal influenza epidemiology and the role of social networks via an agent-based model; An evolutionary economic agent-based model of climate change and the role of lobbying; COMPARE micro-simulation model that has been used to evaluate proposed changes to US health care system; Modeling HIV transmission for the US to inform optimal test-and-treat strategies via a differential equations model; Modeling yearly health and cost burden of illicit drugs in the US; Constructing a micro-simulation for alcohol consumption and its health and social outcomes. He is currently working on developing an agent-based model for income tax evasion. Vardavas received his Ph.D. in physics from Imperial College London.

Recent Projects

  • Health Outcomes, Risk Perceptions and Preventive Behavior on Social Networks
  • COMPARE modeling
  • Economics of Treating Viral STIs
  • Epidemic control options in the event of a smallpox bioterrorism attack.
  • Modeling yearly health and cost burden of illicit drugs in the US.