Professor Wand focuses on programming-language semantics and their application to compiler correctness.
Throughout the 1990s, Professor Wand examined the verification of optimizing compilers, building an understanding of how a program analysis justifies the program transformation based upon it.
Professor Wand has also explored the related area of type theory, particularly as applied to object-oriented programming. He has been a leader in the study of continuations, a technique for understanding the control structure of programs. With Daniel P. Friedman and Christopher T. Haynes, he wrote Essentials of Programming Languages, a widely used textbook. He is a Fellow of the Association for Computing Machinery.