17 faculty members promoted to full professor

The Executive Committee of the MIT Corporation has approved the promotions of 15 associate professors to full professor, effective July 1. Promotions of two other associate professors, Abhijit Banerjee of economics and Michael Cusumano of the Sloan School, were approved at the end of the 1995-96 academic year and became effective on July 1, 1996. Those promoted are:


Dr. Alex P. Pentland in the Program in Media Arts and Sciences. Professor Pentland received the BGS from the University of Michigan in 1976 and the PhD in psychology from MIT in 1982. He was a lecturer at Stanford and a senior research scientist at SRI International's AI Center before coming to MIT as an associate professor in 1987. He is now the academic head of the Media Laboratory and the Toshiba Professor of Media Arts and Sciences. The goal of his research is to eliminate the need for arcane computer languages or interface devices by giving machines the perceptual intelligence needed to function naturally with people, recognizing human faces, expressions, gestures and situational context. His work also encompasses wearable computing, creation of interactive computer graphics creatures, and image/video database annotation. He has won prizes from the IEEE, the AAAI and Ars Electronica, and most recently he was named by Newsweek as one of the 100 Americans to watch as we enter the next century.

Krzysztof Wodiczko in the Department of Architecture. Professor Wodiczko earned the MFA (1968) in industrial design from the Academy of Fine Arts in Warsaw. Before coming to MIT in 1991, he was on the faculty or a visiting professor at the Ecole Nationale Superieure des Beaux Arts, California Institute of the Arts, Cooper Union School of Art, University of Hartford, New York Institute of Technology, Nova Scotia College of Art and Design, Ontario College of Art, and Warsaw Polytechnic Institute. He is now director of the Center for Advanced Visual Studies. As head of the CAVS Interrogative Design Group, he does research on wearable media equipment to protect street children and young victims of violence. He also teaches in the architecture department's Visual Arts Program and the graduate students' design studio. Professor Wodiczko's work explores social issues such as homelessness and rootlessness; he is renowned for his huge slide installations on public architecture throughout the world. Since 1985 he has been honored with eight major retrospectives, and he has been the subject of numerous group and individual shows in North America, Europe and Asia.


Dr. E. Daniel Blankschtein in the Department of Chemical Engineering. Professor Blankschtein received the BSc (1977), MSc (1979) and PhD (1983) in physics from Tel Aviv University. He first came to MIT as a Weizmann postdoctoral research fellow in 1982, and then worked in the Department of Physics and Center for Materials Science and Engineering as a Bantrell postdoctoral research fellow from 1984-86 before being named the Texaco-Mangelsdorf assistant professor in chemical engineering in 1986. He was promoted to associate professor in 1990, and received the department's Outstanding Faculty Award in 1991 and 1993. Professor Blankschtein's research areas include the thermodynamics and statistical mechanics of complex fluids such as micellar solutions, liquid-state theory of macromolecular fluids, biosep-arations, and industrial and biomedical applications of colloid and interface science. Recently, his group developed two software programs for industrial use, Predict and Mix, to facilitate the design and optimization of new surfactant formulations. With two MIT colleagues, he demonstrated that some drugs such as insulin can be administered transdermally utilizing ultrasonic waves. Professor Blankschtein received an NSF Presidential Young Investigator award in 1989 and the American Pharmaceutical Association Ebert Prize in 1996.

Dr. Jesus A. del Alamo in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science. Professor del Alamo earned the Telecommunication Engineer degree from the Polytechnic University of Madrid in 1980 and the MS and PhD in electrical engineering from Stanford in 1983 and 1985, respectively. From 1985-88 he was a research engineer with NTT LSI Laboratories in Japan. He joined MIT as an assistant professor in 1988 and was named an associate professor in 1991. In 1992 he was awarded the Baker Memorial Award for Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching, and the following year he won the Edgerton Junior Faculty Achievement Award. At MIT, Professor del Alamo's research interests have included novel quantum-effect devices with one-dimensional electron confinement, high-power millimeter-wave heterostructure transistors based on GaAs and InP, and RF power Si MOSFETs. His teaching focuses on the physics of integrated microelectronic devices as well as the fundamentals of circuits and electronics. Professor del Alamo is chair of his department's Professional Education Policy Committee and a member of the Presidential Task Force on Student Life and Learning.

Dr. Jean-Jacques E. Slotine in the Department of Mechanical Engineering. Professor Slotine received the Aeronautical Engineer degree (1981) from the Ecole Nationale Superieure de l'Aeronautique et de l'Espace in Toulouse, France and the PhD in aeronautics and astronautics from MIT in 1983. In 1984, after spending a year as a researcher at AT&T Bell Labs, he was appointed an assistant professor of mechanical engineering and director of the MIT Nonlinear Systems Laboratory. Professor Slotine's appointments at MIT reflect his diverse interests; in 1987 he was named a Doherty Professor in Ocean Utilization (administered by MIT Sea Grant), and he is now professor of mechanical engineering and information sciences, as well as a professor in the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences. He is an expert in robotics, nonlinear control and learning systems whose research focuses on robotic adaptation and motion-vision coordination, nonlinear stability theory, and principles of biological control. He has held many visiting professor positions, notably in his native country at the Ecole Polytechnique and the College de France. Professor Slotine has co-authored two textbooks, Robot Analysis and Control (1986) and Applied Nonlinear Control (1991).

Dr. Jacob K. White in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science. Professor White received the BS from MIT and the SM and PhD from the University of California at Berkeley, all in electrical engineering and computer science. He worked at the IBM T.J. Watson research center from 1985-87 and was the Analog Devices Career Development Assistant Professor at MIT from 1987-89. He was a 1988 Presidential Young Investigator and is a former associate editor of the IEEE Transactions on Computer-Aided Design. Professor White's research is in the areas of serial and parallel numerical algorithms for problems in engineering design.


Dr. Abhijit V. Banerjee in the Department of Economics. Professor Banerjee received the BS (1981) from the University of Calcutta in his native India and the MS (1983) from Jawaharlal University in New Delhi, both in economics. He received the PhD in economics (1988) from Harvard University. He was an assistant professor at Princeton University from 1988-92 and at Harvard University in 1992-93. Professor Banerjee came to MIT in 1993 as the Pentti J.K. Kouri Career Development Associate Professor of Economics and was promoted to associate professor with tenure in 1994. He was an Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellow from 1994-96 and was awarded a National Science Foundation Fellowship in 1995 and a MacArthur Foundation Grant in 1996. He has been an associate editor of The Quarterly Journal of Economics and has written numerous articles. Professor Banerjee's principal fields of interest are information theory, theory of income distribution, economic development and industrial organization.

Dr. Elizabeth J. Garrels in the foreign languages and literatures section. Professor Garrels received the BA degree (1967) from the University of Michigan and the MA (1969) and the PhD in romance languages and literatures (1974) from Harvard University. She joined the MIT faculty in 1979 and was awarded the Levitan Prize in the Humanities in 1993. Dr. Garrels is a noted scholar in 19th- and 20th-century Spanish-American literature. Her work is interdisciplinary, combining formalist analysis with an interest in history, political discourse, psychoanalysis, and cultural and gender studies. To date, her publications have concentrated on writers of the novel as well as of the historical/political essay from Peru, Venezuela and Argentina.

Dr. Irene R. Heim in the Department of Linguistics and Philosophy. Professor Heim received the MA in philosophy (1977) from Ludwig Maximilians University in Munich and the PhD in linguistics (1982) from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst. She was a postdoctoral fellow at Stanford and MIT from 1981-83. She taught linguistics at the University of Texas at Austin from 1983-87 and at UCLA from 1987-89, when she came to MIT. Professor Heim was appointed to the Class of 1943 chair in linguistics and philosophy in 1992. Her area of specialization is semantics, and her research has been devoted to various topics pertaining to the relation between semantics and pragmatics and the interface between semantics and syntax (for example, definiteness, anaphora and presupposition). She is coauthor of a forthcoming textbook Semantics in Generative Grammar and is one of the founding editors of the journal Natural Language Semantics.

Dr. Henry Jenkins III of the literature section. Professor Jenkins received the BA degree (1980) in political science and journalism from Georgia State University, the MA (1985) in communication studies from the University of Iowa, and the PhD (1989) in communication arts from the University of Wisconsin at Madison. He began teaching at MIT in 1989 and was a recipient of the Harold E. Edgerton Award in 1992. He is director of the Film and Media Studies Program and is the leading force behind the creation of a graduate program in media studies at MIT. Professor Jenkins, the author/editor of four books, is widely regarded as a leader in film and media studies and a pioneer in the ethnographic study of media consumption. His work emphasizes the interpretive activities of "fan cultures"--for example, Star Trek fans have used the program's material to create their own community and literature. He is currently developing a CD-ROM project, The Virtual Screening Room: An Interactive Textbook for Film Analysis, and writing a book on postwar American children's culture.

Dr. James M. Snyder Jr. in the Department of Political Science. Professor Snyder received the BA degree in economics (1981) from Duke University and the PhD from the California Institute of Technology in 1985. He was a member of the University of Chicago's Department of Economics from 1985-92, and in 1990-91 he was also the postdoctoral fellow in political economy at the Graduate School of Industrial Administration at Carnegie Mellon University. He came to MIT in 1992 as a tenured associate professor. Professor Snyder's primary research and teaching interests are in formal political theory and political methodology, particularly as these apply to American politics. He has written on elections and campaign finance, legislative roll-call behavior, legislative institutions, and initiatives and referenda. Professor Snyder is currently working on empirical research in campaign finance (especially the links, if any, between PAC contributions and legislation); formal models of vote-buying and vote-trading; and formal models and empirical research on the role of political parties in electoral and legislative politics.

Dr. Charles H. Fine in the Sloan School of Management. Professor Fine received the BA degree (1978) in mathematics and management science from Duke University, and the MS (1981) in operations research and the PhD (1983) in business administration/decision sciences from Stanford University. He came to MIT in 1983 as an assistant professor at the Sloan School, became an associate professor in 1989 and received tenure in 1991. Professor Fine teaches courses on operations management and technology supply chains at Sloan and serves as associate director of the Center for Technology, Policy and Industrial Development as well as co-director of the International Motor Vehicle Program. His early work focused primarily on understanding the economics of quality improvement and flexible manufacturing. Professor Fine's research focuses on three-dimensional concurrent engineering--the concurrent design and development of new products, new processes and supply chains--primarily in the automotive, aircraft, telecommunications and electronic industries.


Dr. Edward H. Adelson in the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences. Professor Adelson received the BA degree in physics and philosophy (1974) from Yale University and the PhD in experimental psychology from the University of Michigan (1979). He was a postdoctoral fellow at New York University from 1979-81 and a staff scientist at the RCA Sarnoff Laboratories from 1981-86. He came to MIT in 1987 as an associate professor of vision science and was granted tenure in 1995. Professor Adelson has made numerous contributions to the fields of human vision, computer vision and image coding. In recent years, he has concentrated on problems in mid-level vision, including issues of motion perception, surface perception, brightness and grouping.

Dr. Thomas A. Herring in the Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences. Professor Herring received the bachelor's degree with first-class honors (1976) and master's degree (1978) from the University of Queensland in his native Australia. He came to MIT as a research assistant in the Department of Earth and Planetary Sciences in 1979 and received the PhD in 1983. He was a research associate at Harvard University from 1983-89 and a visiting scientist at the Australian Department of Energy and Resources division of national mapping in 1986. Dr. Herring returned to MIT in 1989 as the Kerr-McGee associate professor of geophysics in the Department of Earth, Atmospheric and Planetary Sciences in 1989. He was awarded tenure in 1992. He has served on a number of NASA and National Research Council advisory panels and was chair of the National Academy of Sciences Committee on Geodesy from 1994-96.

Dr. Michael I. Jordan in the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences. Professor Jordan received the BS degree cum laude in psychology (1978) from Louisiana State University, the MS in mathematics (1980) from Arizona State University and the PhD in cognitive science (1985) from the University of California at San Diego. He was elected to Phi Beta Kappa in 1978 and received a Phi Beta Kappa National Graduate Fellowship from 1978-79. He did postdoctoral research in the Department of Computer and Information Science at the University of Massachusetts at Amherst in 1986-87 and came to MIT as an assistant professor in 1991. He received tenure and was promoted to associate professor in 1992. Dr. Jordan's primary research interests are in the study of learning and reasoning. He has studied a variety of artificial learning and reasoning systems, including neural networks, decision trees and Bayesian belief networks. He has also studied natural learning in human motor control, using psychophysical methods.

Dr. David C. Page in the Department of Biology. Professor Page received the BA in chemistry (1978) from Swarthmore College and MD magna cum laude with a concentration in genetics (1984) from Harvard Medical School and the Harvard-MIT Health Sciences and Technology program. He was a visiting student and postdoctoral associate in Dr. David Botstein's laboratory at MIT from 1981-84. He was a fellow at the Whitehead Institute for Biomedical Research from 1984-88, an associate member from 1988-93 and a member since 1993. He came to MIT as an assistant professor in 1988 and was promoted to associate professor and received tenure in 1992. Professor Page joined the Howard Hughes Medical Institute as an assistant investigator in 1990 and was promoted to associate investigator in 1997. He has been associate director of the Whitehead Institute/MIT Center for Genome Resaearch since 1992. Elected to Phi Beta Kappa in 1978, he received a MacArthur Fellowship in 1986. Dr. Page and his colleagues use genetic tools to explore development of the germ line and reproductive tract in humans and mice, especially the roles that sex-chromosome genes play in these processes. In 1992, his laboratory cloned the entire human Y chromosome.


Dr. Michael A. Cusumano of the Sloan School of Management. Professor Cusumano received the BA in the history of ideas (1976) from Princeton University and the PhD in Japanese history and East Asian languages (1984) from Harvard University. He was a postdoctoral fellow at the Harvard School of Business from 1984-86 and joined MIT as an assistant professor in the Sloan School in 1986. He was promoted to tenured associate professor in 1993 and full professor in 1996, and is now Sloan Distinguished Professor of Management. Fluent in Japanese, Professor Cusumano lived in Japan for seven years and was awarded two Fulbright Fellowships and a Japan Foundation Fellowship for study at Tokyo University. He also taught at International Christian University, Hitotsubashi University and Tokyo University. He has been a consultant in software development for several companies and is now studying software development techniques and strategies for Internet applications. Professor Cusumano is the author of three books, including Microsoft Secrets: How the World's Most Powerful Software Company Creates Technology, Shapes Markets, and Manages People (1995), written with Richard W. Selby. His other books are The Japanese Automobile Industry: Technology and Management at Nissan and Toyota (1985) and Japan's Software Factories: A Challenge to U.S. Management (1991).

A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on April 30, 1997.

Topics: Faculty

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