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Martha Pollack

Cornell University President; Professor

Areas of Interest

Artificial Intelligence

Biography

Martha E. Pollack is the President-elect of Cornell University and has tenured appointments in the departments of Information Science and Computer Science. She currently serves on the Steering Committee of the Jacobs Technion-Cornell Institute, the academic partnership between Cornell and the Technion – Israel Institute of Technology at Cornell Tech.

A fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science, the Association for Computing Machinery and the Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence (AAAI), Pollack’s research has been in the area of artificial intelligence, where she has published widely on topics including automated planning, natural-language processing, temporal reasoning and constraint satisfaction. A particular focus of her work has been the design of intelligent technology to assist people with cognitive impairment, a topic on which she testified before the United States Senate Subcommittee on Aging. Her research has been funded by the National Science Foundation, Intel, DARPA and the Air Force Office of Scientific Research.

In addition to receiving a number of awards for her research, she has been honored for her professional service, for example, with the University of Michigan’s Sarah Goddard Power Award in recognition of her efforts to increase the representation of and climate for women and underrepresented minorities in science and engineering. She has served as editor-in-chief of the Journal of Artificial Intelligence Research, as president of AAAI, as a member of the Advisory Committee for the National Science Foundation’s Computer and Information Science and Engineering Division, and as a member of the board of directors of the Computing Research Association.

Prior to being named Cornell's 14th president, Pollack served as Provost and Executive Vice President for Academic Affairs, Professor of Computer Science and Engineering, and Professor of Information at the University of Michigan. Prior to becoming provost, Pollack served the University of Michigan as vice provost for academic and budgetary affairs, dean of the School of Information, and associate chair for computer science and engineering in the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science. Before joining the University of Michigan faculty in 2000, Pollack was a professor at the University of Pittsburgh and a member of the technical staff at SRI International. Pollack received her bachelor’s degree from Dartmouth College, completing a self-designed interdisciplinary major in linguistics. She earned her M.S.E. and Ph.D. degrees in computer and information science from the University of Pennsylvania.