UC in 2023


I am happy to announce that I am starting 2023 as an associate professor at the University of California, Riverside, in the computer science department. While I will miss USC, I hope to maintain close connections with the many wonderful colleagues and students I have had the privilege of working with there (I will continue to have a title as an adjunct research associate professor at USC). I will also continue my role as a part-time visiting academic at Amazon Alexa AI. 

I am looking forward to using the freedom of tenure to explore several exciting new research directions, see here for a preview of one new direction. I was fortunate to participate in many exciting projects in 2022, here is a sampling of some major developments.

  • My PhD student Rob Brekelmans defended and is now a postdoc at Vector Institute. His ICLR 2022 paper presented exciting new results on mutual information estimation (talk).
  • A second PhD student in my group defended. Sami Abu-al-Haija is now at Google Research. He contributed a number of significant and influential ideas in graph representation learning.
  • Umang Gupta will defend in 2023. His work at ACL 2022 on reducing bias in text generation seems especially relevant given the recent interest in ChatGPT. 
  • Hrayr Harutyunyan will also defend in 2023. He has made some major contributions on the deep problem of understanding generalization in neural networks, building on his already influential NeurIPS 2021 paper with recent results in ITW in 2022.
  • Material science! This is my first paper in material science, led by the multi-talented physicist Marcin Abram. A paper appeared in npj Computational Materials, showing an intriguing way to use self-supervised machine learning to discover changes in material microstructure.
  • Neuroimaging. Several papers build on our ongoing work on harmonizing MRIs across sites, and on federated learning. An older line of work of mine, CorEx, saw some new applications in neuroimaging with my first cover article for a journal, an issue of Entropy (shown below).
Cover article in Entropy
Cool picture from the npj Computational Materials article.
For fun: one of my Lensa avatars, astronaut mode.

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