We are delighted to report that Dr Long Tran-Thanh has received a AIJ Prominent Paper Award for his first-authored paper, Efficient crowdsourcing of unknown experts using bounded multi-armed bandits, published in 2014 at Artificial Intelligence (AIJ), a premier journal in the field of artificial intelligence. The AIJ Prominent Paper Award recognises outstanding papers published in the journal in the last seven years that are exceptional in their significance and impact.
The paper developed the first comprehensive framework for the rigorous and principled mathematical analysis of task allocation algorithms in crowdsourcing systems. In addition, the paper proposed bounded bandits, a new sequential decision making model to solve task allocation problems with resource constraints. The work has had a significant impact on subsequent work carried out in both industry and academia. The award will be presented at IJCAI 2021, a top tier international conference in artificial intelligence.
We are pleased to report that Dr Simon Graham, Senior Research Fellow from the Department of Computer Science, has received a SEM Faculty Thesis Prize.
Each year, the Faculty of Science, Engineering and Medicine (SEM) funds a prize for the best PhD/EngD thesis in each of its ten departments. Each department nominates a winner out of the applications received after a judging process as determined by the Faculty.
Dr Simon Graham commented regarding his award:
My research focussed on the development of computational tools for the automatic analysis of digitised cancerous tissue samples. Now, I am continuing my research in the area of computational pathology and soon hope to see it utilised in a clinical setting, where it may help improve cancer recognition and treatment planning. I would like to thank my supervisor Professor Nasir Rajpoot and all my collaborators within the Tissue Image Analytics Centre and at University Hospitals Coventry and Warwickshire for their support during my PhD.
Professor Mike Paterson presented with a 2021 Paul Halmos - Lester Ford Award
The Mathematical Association of America has presented Mike Paterson with a 2021 Paul Halmos - Lester Ford Award for an article of "expository excellence published in The American Mathematical Monthly". There were several unusual aspects to this paper: the title, "A head-ache causing problem"; the authors, "Conway, J.H., Paterson, M.S., and Moscow, U.S.S.R"; the sole reference in the paper is to itself; the main result is first disproved and then proved; and the acknowledgments make clear that Conway wrote the paper. Paterson previously received this award in 2010 (then the Lester Ford Award) for his "Overhang" article. More information can be found here.
The program focusses on using AI to address some of the world’s biggest societal challenges. Dr. Tran-Thanh’s project, titled Incentive Engineering and Truthful Mechanisms for Grassland Quality and Local Market Price Estimation in Africa, will address the problem of holistic grazing and pasture management in East Africa. The main objectives of the project are: (i) to identify the most efficient ways to evaluate the overall quality of different grazing areas; (ii) to develop a user friendly recommendation system that chooses the next best grazing areas for pastoralists, that takes into account the holistic aspect of pasture management; and (iii) to incentivise pastoralists to truthfully report their activities in order to further improve the system’s predictive ability. The project is a collaboration between the University of Warwick and AfriScout.
In further good news, Dr Tanaya Guha and Dr Ramanujan Sridharan have been promoted to Associate Professor, effective from 1 July 2021 and 2 October 2021 (respectively). Many congratulations to them, whose recommendations in particular state:
[Dr Guha has] grown her research group to five PhD students currently, and attracted a portfolio of research grants in her career, including recently a substantial award from Ford. ... In engagement, Dr Guha has been raising the visibility of Warwick in her national and international research communities through her invited talks, leadership in the Association for the Advancement of Affective Computing, programme committee memberships, and conference organisation activities. She has also contributed substantially to the Sutton Trust summer school, a key outreach programme.
Dr Sridharan’s high standing in the research community is confirmed by his invited talks at international meetings and leading universities, memberships of the programme committees of prestigious conferences, and his organisation of international research events. ... In teaching, Dr Sridharan has successfully led (jointly and individually) two undergraduate modules. The feedback from students has been generally positive, with many appreciative of Dr Sridharan’s innovative and energetic delivery.
We are happy to announce that Dr Theo Damoulas has been promoted to Professor, effective from 1 August 2021. Quoting from Theo's recommendation,
Since his appointment to Warwick in 2015, Dr Damoulas has steadily and speedily risen to one of the most successful researchers in his two departments of Computer Science and Statistics. ... An impressive characteristic of Dr Damoulas’s expertise is his bridging of fundamentals and applications in these fields, and his ability to collaborate intensively over a wide area spanning several Warwick departments, several groups at the Turing, government bodies and industrial partners. ... Dr Damoulas has been one of the most energetic and most appreciated teachers in the department. ... The teaching achievements of Dr Damoulas extend also beyond Warwick, including his work with NYPD, his mentorships within the Turing PhD enrichment scheme, and his PhD external examining work.
it remains to say many congratulations!
Each year, the University of Warwick's Faculty of Science, Engineering and Medicine (SEM) funds a prize for the best Warwick-affiliated research output from an Early Career Researcher. Each department nominates a winner, or joint winners, out of the applications received after a judging process as determined by the Faculty.
Professor Yulan He, who led the Department's selection, commented:
Pavel's paper on quantile summary, co-authored with Professor Graham Cormode, was published in a top-tier conference on theoretical databases, Symposium on Principles of Database Systems (PODS) co-located with SIGMOD. The tight lower bound for quantile summaries proposed in this work is a deep theoretical exploration central to data management. The work led to a collaboration with Splunk, a US-based company that focuses on processing machine-generated big data. The follow-up paper has been accepted to the 2021 edition of the PODS conference. The result has a great potential for a broader impact. Josiah's work is on medical imaging. Together with Dr Sharon Collier and Professor Till Bretschneider, they proposed an enhanced 3D segmentation method (with a curvature-based enhancement term), which outperforms the best-of-breed random walker method in Dictyostelium image volumes. The work was published in a top journal, IEEE Transactions on Medical Imaging, with an impact factor of 6.68. Josiah presented his method at the Actin 2020 meeting and was awarded a prize for best imaging in a talk by the Royal Microscopical Society and has been featured in an article in their inFocus magazine.