UB's Govindaraju Is Elected a AAAS Fellow

Release Date: January 14, 2011 This content is archived.


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UB computer scientist Venu Govindaraju has been elected a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science.

BUFFALO, N.Y. -- Venu Govindaraju, PhD, SUNY Distinguished Professor in the Department of Computer Science and Engineering in the University at Buffalo School of Engineering and Applied Sciences, has been elected a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), the world's largest general scientific society and publisher of the journal Science.

He was one of 503 scientists selected by their peers this year "because of their scientifically or socially distinguished efforts to advance science or its applications."

New Fellows will be honored at a ceremony on Feb. 19 at the AAAS Fellows Forum during the 2011 AAAS Annual Meeting in Washington, D.C. The Fellows also will be announced in the journal Science on Jan. 28.

The AAAS is recognizing Govindaraju "for outstanding contributions to modeling and experimentation in the areas of biometrics and document recognition and retrieval."

The founding director of UB's Center for Unified Biometrics and Sensors (CUBS) and the associate director of the Center for Document Analysis and Recognition (CEDAR), Govindaraju co-authored more than 325 scientific papers and has been principal or co-principal investigator of more than $55 million in research projects.

Since it was founded in 2003, CUBS has produced 17 doctoral-level graduates and attracted approximately $10 million in federal and industry funding. The center advances machine learning and pattern recognition technologies to build engineered systems for both civilian and homeland security applications. It develops new methods for customizing devices that use data from physical biometrics, such as fingerprints, hand geometry and iris scans; behavioral biometrics, such as signature, voiceprint and gait.

As a computer scientist specializing in pattern recognition, Govindaraju's research and that of his colleagues in UB's Center of Excellence in Document Analysis and Recognition, into getting machines to recognize and understand handwriting was at the core of the first handwritten address-interpretation system used by the U.S. Postal Service. He also was responsible for technology transfer to Lockheed Martin and Siemens Corp. for the system's deployment by the U.S. Postal Service, Australia Post and UK Royal Mail.

He was one of five technologists in the world to receive the 2010 IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers) Computer Society Technical Achievement Award, given to recognize outstanding and innovative contributions to computer and information science and engineering or computer technology.

Govindaraju also has the special distinction of having been selected three years in a row to participate in the prestigious HP Labs Innovation Research program, which provides colleges, universities and research institutes with opportunities to conduct breakthrough, collaborative research with HP and encourage open collaboration between HP and the academic community.

He was named an Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) Fellow for contributing fundamental knowledge to computing and computer science and for playing a crucial role in driving innovations necessary to sustain competitiveness in an information-based society.

In 2010, two papers by his students won awards for best student paper at the International Conference on Frontiers in Handwriting Recognition and the International Conference on Pattern Recognition.

Govindaraju has given more than a hundred invited talks around the world and has supervised the dissertations of 20 doctoral students. He has served on editorial boards of premier journals in his area and has chaired several technical conferences and workshops. He is a recipient of the MIT Global Technovator Award and a Fellow of the IEEE and the IAPR, the International Association of Pattern Recognition.

A recipient of a SUNY Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Scholarship and Creative Activities, he is a graduate of the Indian Institute of Technology, Kharagpur, and earned master's and doctoral degrees in computer science from UB.

He lives in Amherst.

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