Ali is the JR East Professor of Engineering in the department of Civil and Environmental Engineering, the Associate Director of the Institute for Data, Systems and Society, and the Director of the Sociotechnical Systems Research Center at MIT. Ali joined MIT in 2016 from the University of Pennsylvania where he was the Alfred Fitler Moore Professor of Network Science in the Department of Electrical and Systems Engineering. His current research interests include the interplay of dynamic systems and networks with specific emphasis on multi-agent coordination and control, distributed optimization, network science, and network economics.