Distinguished University Professor James Kurose, of the UMass Amherst College of Information and Computer Sciences (CICS), has received the Computing Research Association (CRA) 2021 Distinguished Service Award, an honor granted annually to one person or organization that has made an outstanding service contribution to the computing research community.
The CRA established the award to recognize service in the areas of government affairs, professional societies, publications or conferences, and leadership that has a major impact on computing research. Kurose, who currently serves as associate chancellor for partnerships and innovation at UMass Amherst, was selected this year in “recognition of his exemplary service and career, in which he has distinguished himself as national leader in numerous impactful service roles in the computing research community.”
In a statement released March 2, the CRA awards selection committee said, “In every setting, Kurose has brought his tireless energy, enthusiasm, and extraordinary collegiality to build community, and strengthen our field.”
Specifically, the committee cited Kurose’s “visionary leadership” in the role of assistant director at the National Science Foundation, where he led the Directorate for Computer and Information Science and Engineering, and launched new programs and initiatives across a broad spectrum of computing disciplines. They recognized his leadership on the governmental initiative to conceptualize and launch the National AI Research Institutes in 2020, which were established by the National Science Foundation to pursue transformational advances in artificial intelligence in areas of societal impact, from extreme weather preparedness to K–12 education. The committee also noted his service in the roles of assistant director for artificial intelligence at the White House Office of Science and Technology Policy, co-chair of the National Science and Technology Council’s National Artificial Intelligence Research and Development Strategic Plan, and the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development.
“Jim’s service in education and government over the past thirty years has truly furthered the field of computer science and shaped the industry,” says Laura Haas, dean of CICS. “We are proud to have him in our college and to see him receive recognition for his exceptional contributions to the discipline.”
Kurose joined UMass Amherst in 1984, after completing his doctorate in computer science at Columbia University. Kurose's research interests focus on computer network protocols and architecture, network measurement, sensor networks, and multimedia communication. He is proud to have mentored and taught an amazing group of students, and to have received a number of awards for his research, teaching and service, including the IEEE Infocom Award, the ACM SIGCOMM Lifetime Achievement Award, the ACM SIGCOMM Test of Time Award, and the IEEE Computer Society Taylor Booth Education Medal. With Keith Ross, he is co-author of the best-selling textbook, Computer Networking: A Top Down Approach, now in its eighth edition. He is a member of the National Academy of Engineering and a fellow of the ACM and the IEEE.