Ian Foster, the Arthur Holly Compton Distinguished Service Professor of Computer Science at University of Chicago, is the 2019 recipient of the IEEE Computer Society Charles Babbage Award, given since 1989 in recognition of significant contributions in the field of parallel computing.

The organization honored Foster for his “outstanding contributions in the areas of parallel computing languages, algorithms, and technologies for scalable distributed applications.” Foster will receive the award at the IEEE CS International Parallel and Distributed Processing Symposium (IPDPS 2019) in Rio de Janeiro in May.

Foster’s research deals with distributed, parallel, and data-intensive computing technologies, and innovative applications of those technologies to scientific problems in such domains as materials science, climate change, and biomedicine. His Globus software is widely used in national and international cyberinfrastructures.

Foster is a fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, Association for Computing Machinery, and British Computer Society. His awards include the Global Information Infrastructure Next Generation award, British Computer Society Lovelace Medal, and IEEE Kanai award. He has received honorary doctorates from the University of Canterbury, New Zealand, and the Mexican Center for Research and Advanced Studies of the National Polytechnic Institute.

He co-founded Univa, Inc., a company established to deliver grid and cloud computing solutions, and Praedictus Climate Solutions, which combines data science and high performance computing for quantitative agricultural forecasting.

Foster received a BSc (Hons I) degree from the University of Canterbury, New Zealand, and a Ph.D. from Imperial College, United Kingdom, both in computer science.

For more on the Charles Babbage Award, visit the IPDPS website.

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