Date Posted: 3/11/2019

Multiple Cornell Computer Science faculty have received coveted Google Faculty Research Awards, which “provid[e] unrestricted gifts as support for research at institutions around the world. The program is focused on funding world-class technical research in Computer Science, Engineering, and related fields.”

Competition was keen: 920 proposals were submitted, 158 were funded. Applications arrived from 40 countries and 320 universities.

The awards will enable the following faculty to continue and expand their research agendas. Projects from CS and Cornell Tech faculty are listed first—under their respective research areas; below them Cornell College of Engineering awards are also noted.


Information Retrieval and Real Time Content

Thorsten Joachims, Cornell University, CS Professor

“Counterfactual Learning with Estimated Propensities”

  • The research addresses what-if questions like “what if I make a specific change to the ranking function of my search engine, will that enable users to find what they want faster?” Instead of actually having to try this change on a fraction of the users online, the research develops causal inference techniques that can reuse historic log data to answer these questions offline.


Natural Language Processing

Claire Cardie, Cornell University, CS & IS Professor



Vitaly Shmatikov, Cornell University, CS & Cornell Tech Professor

“Detecting and Mitigating Unwanted Learning”

  • The goal of this project is to detect and mitigate intentional and unintentional leakage of sensitive data from machine-learning models and to ensure that models do not contain backdoors or hidden functionality.


Structured Data

Immanuel Trummer, Cornell University, CS Assistant Professor


Natural Language Processing and Robotics

Yoav Artzi, Cornell University, CS & Cornell Tech Assistant Professor

“Joint Learning of Continuous Natural Language Control for Quadcopters in Simulation and Reality”

  • We propose learning a direct mapping of natural language instructions and raw observations to continuous control for a quadcopter.

Daniel Lee, Cornell University, COE & Cornell Tech Professor


Cornell COE Faculty:

Machine Learning and Data Mining

Mahsa Shoaran, Cornell University, COE Assistant Professor


Jayadev Acharya, Cornell University, COE Assistant Professor


Christina Delimitrou, Cornell University, COE Assistant Professor

Zhiru Zhang, Cornell University, COE Associate Professor


See also, Melanie Lefkowitz's article in the Cornell Chronicle (April 4, 2019): "Ten from CIS, engineering faculty win Google research awards."