New Faculty (2021)
Connor W. Coley, the Henri Slezynger (1957) Career Development Assistant Professor, joined the Department of Chemical Engineering (ChemE) in July 2020. He was formally appointed to a shared position between the college in the Faculty of Artificial Intelligence and Decision-Making in EECS and ChemE in July 2021. Prior to his arrival, he was a postdoctoral researcher at the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard. His research interests are in how data science and laboratory automation can be used to streamline discovery in the chemical sciences.
Nidhi Seethapathi joined MIT as an assistant professor in a shared position between the college in the Faculty of Artificial Intelligence and Decision-Making in EECS and the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences in January 2022. She has been a postdoctoral researcher at the University of Pennsylvania. Seethapathi’s research goal is to build computational predictive models of human movement with applications in autonomous and robot-aided neuromotor rehabilitation. She will lead a research group at MIT to realize this goal through modeling and experiments.
Mohsen Ghaffari joined MIT as an assistant professor in the Faculty of Computer Science in ECCS in April 2022, arriving from ETH Zurich. Noted for his work on distributed and parallel algorithms, Ghaffari received the 2017 Association for Computing Machinery (ACM)-European Association for Theoretical Computer Science Principles of Distributed Computing Doctoral Dissertation Award and earned honorable mention for the 2017 ACM Doctoral Dissertation Award. He received a 2019 starting grant from the European Research Council.
Vincent Sitzmann joined MIT as an assistant professor in the Faculty of Artificial Intelligence and Decision-Making in EECS in July 2022. He has been a postdoctoral associate with professors Joshua Tenenbaum, William T. Freeman, and Frédo Durand at the Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory. His research interests lie in the self-supervised learning of neural representations of 3-D scenes and their applications in computer graphics, computer vision, and robotics. Sitzmann’s goal is to allow independent agents to reason about our world given visual observations, such as inferring a complete model of a scene with information on geometry, material, and lighting from only a few observations, a task that is simple for humans but currently impossible for AI.
Mina Konakovic Lukovic joined MIT as an assistant professor in the Faculty of Artificial Intelligence and Decision-Making in EECS in July 2022. She has been a Schmidt Science Postdoctoral Fellow at MIT’s Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Laboratory, mentored by Professor Wojciech Matusik. Her research focuses on computer graphics, computational fabrication, 3-D geometry processing, and machine learning, including architectural geometry and the design of programmable materials.
Tess Smidt joined MIT as an assistant professor in the Faculty of Electrical Engineering in EECS in August 2021. She was the 2018 Alvarez Fellow in Computing Sciences at Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory, where she designed neural networks from first principles for rich data types such as geometry and scientific data. As an undergraduate at MIT majoring in physics and minoring in architecture, Smidt engineered giant neutrino detectors in physics professor Janet Conrad’s group and created a permanent science-art installation on MIT’s campus called the Cosmic Ray Chandeliers.
Manish Raghavan joins MIT in a shared position between the college in the Faculty of Computer Science in EECS and the MIT Sloan School of Management in September 2022. Before his arrival at MIT, he is to serve as a postdoctoral researcher at Harvard University’s Center for Research on Computation and Society starting in fall 2021. Raghavan’s primary interests lie in the application of computational techniques to domains of social concern, including algorithmic fairness and behavioral economics, with a focus on the use of algorithmic tools in the hiring pipeline.
Martin Wainwright joined EECS in the Faculty of Artificial Intelligence and Decision-Making in July 2022. Wainwright comes to MIT from UC Berkeley where he held a joint appointment between the Department of Statistics and the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science. His research interests are in high-dimensional statistics, control and optimization, and statistical machine learning. This is a return to MIT for Wainwright whose doctoral thesis was awarded the George M. Sprowls Prize in 2002. Among his many honors, he has also received an Alfred P. Sloan Foundation Research Fellowship (2005); IEEE Best Paper Awards from the Signal Processing Society (2008) and Communications Society (2010); the Joint Paper Award from IEEE Information Theory and Communication Societies (2012); a Medallion Lecturer (2013) of the Institute for Mathematical Statistics; a Section Lecturer at the International Congress of Mathematicians (2014); the COPSS Presidents’ Award in Statistics (2014); and the David Blackwell Lecturer in Statistics (2017).