SCS Student Awards
School of Computer Science, Carnegie Mellon University
Pittsburgh PA 15213-3891
(412)268-8525 . (412)268-5576 (fax)

School of Computer Science Distinguished Dissertation Award
– Awarded annually by the School of Computer Science in recognition of outstanding work by a graduate of our school-wide doctoral programs.

2022-2023 (Award 2023)

Honorable Mention

  • Amanda Coston, May 2023 (Heinz/MLD)
    Principled Machine Learning for Societally Consequential Decision Making
    –Advisors: Alexandra Chouldechova, Edward H. Kennedy
  • Isaac Grosof, July 2023 (CSD)
    Optimal Scheduling in Multiserver Queues
    –Advisor: Mor Harchol-Balter
  • Dongshunyi (Dora) Li, July 2023 (CBD)
    Spatio-Temporal Analysis of Single Cell Data
    –Advisor: Ziv Bar-Joseph
  • Hanrui Zhang, July 2023 (CSD)
    Designing and Analyzing Machine Learning Algorithms in the Presence of Strategic Behavior
    –Advisor: Vincent Conitzer

2021-2022 (Award 2022) Honorable Mention

  • Emily Black, July 2021 (CSD)
    (Un)Fairness Along the AI Pipeline Problems and Solutions
    –Advisor: Matt Fredrikson
  • Ziv Scully, August 2022 (CSD)
    A New Toolbox for Scheduling Theory
    –Advisor: Mor Harchol-Balter
  • Jonathan Sterling, October 2021 (CSD)
    First Steps in Synthetic Tait Computability: The Objective Metatheory of Cubical Type Theory
    –Advisor: Robert Harper

2020-2021 (Award 2021) Honorable Mention

  • Rose Bohrer, May 2021 (CSD)
    Practical End-to-End Verification of Cyber-Physical Systems
    –Advisor: André Platzer
  • Jason Li, June 2021 (CSD)
    Preconditioning and Locality in Algorithm Design
    –Advisors: Anupam Gupta, Bernhard Haeupler
  • Toby Jia-Jun Li, May 2021 (HCII)
    A Multi-Modal Intelligent Agent that Learns from Demonstrations and Natural Language Instructions
    –Advisor: Brad A. Myers
  • Yang Yang, December 2020 (CBD)
    Computational methods for multi-species comparison of 3D genome organization and function
    –Advisor: Jian Ma

2019/2020 (Award 2020)

  • Noam Brown, September 2020 (CSD)
    Equilibrium Finding for Large Adversarial Imperfect-Information Games
    –Advisor: Tuomas Sandholm

    Honorable Mention

  • Naama Ben-David, August 2020 (CSD)
    Theoretical Foundations for Practical Concurrent and Distributed Computation
    –Advisor: Guy E. Blelloch
    Laxman Dhulipala, August 2020 (CSD)
    Provably Efficient and Scalable Shared-Memory Graph Processing
    –Advisor: Guy E. Blelloch
  • Chieh Lin, March 2020 (MLD)
    Probabilistic Single Cell Lineage Tracing
    –Advisor: Ziv Bar-Joseph
  • Eric Wong, May 2020 (MLD)
    Provable, structured, and efficient methods for robustness of deep networks to adversarial examples
    –Advisor: J. Zico Kolter

2018/2019 (Award 2019) 2017/2018 (Award 2018) 2016/2017 (Award 2017) 2015/2016 (Award 2016) 2014/2015 (Award 2015) 2013/2014 (Award 2014) 2012/2013 (Award 2013) 2011/2012 (Award 2012)
  • Kanat Tanwongsan, August 2011 (CS)
    Efficient Parallel Approximation Algorithms
    –Advisors: Guy Blelloch, Anupam Gupta

  • Vijay Vasudevan, October 2011 (CS)
    Energy-efficient Data-intensive Computing with a Fast Array of Wimpy Nodes
    –Advisor: David Andersen

    Honorable Mention

  • André Filipe Torres Martins, May 2011 (IST/Portugal)
    The Geometry of Constrained Structured Prediction: Applications to
    Inference and Learning of Natural Language Syntax

    –Advisors: Noah Smith, Eric Xing, Mário Figueiredo, Pedro Aguiar

  • Duen Horng Polo Chau, July 2012 (ML)
    Data Mining Meets HCI: Making Sense of Large Graphs
    –Advisor: Christos Faloutsos

2010/2011 (Award 2011)

  • Jean-Francois Lalonde, December 2011 (RI)
    Understanding and Recreating Visual Appearance Under Natural Illumination
    –Advisors: Alexei Efros, Srinivasa Narasimhan

    Honorable Mention

  • Daniel Licata, February 2011 (CS)
    Dependently Typed Programming with Domain-Specific Logics
    –Advisor: Robert Harper

  • Hetunandan Kamisetty, March 2011 (CS)
    Structured Probabilistic Models of Proteins Across Spatial and Fitness Landscape
    –Advisors: Christopher J. Langmead, Eric P. Xing

  • Brian Ziebart, December 2010 (ML)
    Modeling Purposeful Adaptive Behavior with the Principle of Maximum Causal Entropy
    –Advisors: J. Andrew Bagnell, Anind K. Dey

2009/2010 (Award 2010)

  • Yi Wu, August 2010 (CS)
    The Approximability of Learning and Constraint Satisfaction Programs
    –Advisor: Ryan O'Donnell

    Honorable Mention

  • Deepak Garg, December 2009 (CS)
    Proof Theory for Authorization Logic and Its Applications to a Practical File System
    –Advisor: Frank Pfenning

2008/2009 (Award 2019)

  • Maria-Florina Balcan, September 2008 (CS)
    New Theoretical Frameworks for Machine Learning
    –Advisor: Avrim Blum

    Honorable Mention

  • Andreas Krause, December 2008 (CS)
    Optimizing Sensing: Theory and Applications
    –Advisor: Carlos Guestrin
  • Jurij Leskovec, September 2008 (ML)
    Dynamics of Large Networks
    –Advisor: Christos Faloutsos


  • Derek Hoiem, May 2007 (RI)
    Seeing the World Behind the Image: Spatial Layout for 3D Scene Understanding
    –Advisors: Alexei (Alyosha) Efros and Martial Hebert

    Honorable Mention

  • Pradeep K. Ravikumar, August 2007 (ML)
    Approximate Inference Structure Learning and Feature Estimation in Markov Random Fields
    –Advisor: John Lafferty
  • Ryan Williams, August 2007 (CS)
    Algorithms and Resource Requirements for Fundamental Problems
    –Advisor: Manuel Blum


  • Adam Wierman, May 2007 (CS)
    Scheduling for Today's Computer Systems: Bridging Theory and Practice
    –Advisor: Mor Harchol-Balter
  • Jacob O. Wobbrock, July 2006 (HCII)
    EdgeWrite: A Versatile Design for Text Entry and Control
    –Advisor: Brad A. Myers


  • Luis Von Ahn, December 2005 (CS)
    Human Computation
    –Advisor: Manuel Blum

  • Angela Demke Brown, August 2005 (CS)
    Explicit Compiler-based Memory Management for Out-of-core Applications
    –Advisor: Todd Mowry
  • Sanjit A. Seshia, May 2005 (CS)
    Adaptive Eager Boolean Encoding for Arithmetic Reasoning in Verification
    –Advisor: Randal E. Bryant

  • Oley Mikhail Sheyner, May 2004 (CS)
    Scenario Graphs and Attack Graphs
    –Advisor: Jeannette Wing
  • Michael H. Bowling, May 2003 (CS)
    Multiagent Learning in the Presence of Agents with Limitations
    –Advisors: Manuela Veloso
  • John Gregory Steffan, September 2003
    Hardware Support for Thread-Level Speculation
    –Advisors: Todd C. Mowry
  • Robert C. Miller, May 2002 (CS)
    Lightweight Structure in Text
    –Advisors: Brad Myers and David Garlan
  • Perry S. Cheng, September 2001 (CS)
    Parallel, Real-Time Garbage Collection
    –Advisors: Guy Blelloch and Robert Harper
  • Andrej Bauer, December 2000 (CS)
    DThe Realizability Approach to Computable Analysis and Topology
    –Advisor:Dana Scott
  • Robert W. O'Callahan, May 2001 (CS)
    Generalized Aliasing as a Basis for Program Analysis Tools
    –Advisors: Daniel Jackson and Jeannette Wing

  • Carl Burch, May 2000 (CS)
    Machine Learning in metrical Task Systems and Other On-Line Problems
    –Advisor: Avrim Blum

  • A. David Redish, May 1997 (CS)
    Beyond the Cognitive Map: Contributions to a Computational Neuroscience Theory of Rodent Navigation
    –Advisor: David Touretzky

  • Jonathan R. Shewchuk, May 1997 (CS)
    Delaunay Refinement Mesh Generation
    –Advisors: Gary Miller and David O'Hallaron

  • Xudong Zhao, August 1996 (CS)
    Verification of Arithmetic Circuits
    –Advisor: Edmund Clarke

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