Date Posted: 6/26/2024

The European Association for Theoretical Computer Science (EATCS) has selected Justin Hsu, assistant professor of computer science in the Cornell Ann S. Bowers College of Computing and Information Science, to receive the 2024 EATCS Presburger Award, which recognizes young scientists who have made outstanding contributions in theoretical computer science.   

In his research, Hsu designs methods to formally verify that programs are correct, especially programs that use randomization. Randomized algorithms can play a central role in areas such as machine learning, data privacy, and cryptography. His research contributions have enabled the automated verification of many randomized algorithms that previously could not be verified using traditional methods.

EATCS described Hsu's work as a "technical tour de force." Specifically, he is being honored for developing "robust semantic and logical foundations for probabilistic and conditional independence, which are critical for analyzing randomized computations." 

Established by EATCS in 2010, the Presburger award is named for Moj┼╝esz Presburger, a Polish Jewish mathematician, who invented Presburger arithmetic as a student in 1929. Hsu is one of two winners selected this year, along with Pravesh Kothari of Princeton University.

"I am deeply honored to be receiving this award and grateful to EATCS for recognizing my work," Hsu said. "Randomized algorithms play a huge role in many applications today, but they are difficult to design and test. By identifying the logical and semantic principles underlying these programs, I hope we can develop new methods to build randomized programs more easily and correctly."

In previous honors, Hsu received a National Science Foundation (NSF) CAREER award and a Facebook Research award.

Before joining the faculty at Cornell in 2021, Hsu was an assistant professor at the University of Wisconsin, Madison, and conducted postdoctoral research at Cornell and University College London. He received his Ph.D. in computer science from the University of Pennsylvania.