Cornell Bowers College of Computing and Information Science
Joseph Halpern


CS Professor Joe Halpern New Member of National Academy of Engineering

Joseph Halpern, the Joseph C. Ford Professor of Engineering, has been elected a member of the National Academy of Engineering (NAE).

Election to NAE is one of the highest professional honors accorded to engineers. Membership honors those who have made outstanding contributions to engineering research, practice or education, as well as to “the pioneering of new and developing fields of technology,” according to the academy.

The NAE recognized Halpern for his methods of “reasoning about knowledge, belief, and uncertainty and their applications to distributed computing and multiagent systems.”

Halpern’s major research interests are in reasoning about knowledge and uncertainty, security, distributed computation, decision theory and game theory. With his former student, Yoram Moses, now a professor at the Technion-Israel Institute of Technology, he pioneered the approach of applying reasoning about knowledge to analyzing distributed protocols and multiagent systems.

Halpern is a fellow of the American Academy for Arts and Sciences, the Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence, the Association for Computing Machinery and the American Association for the Advancement of Science. His awards include the Kampe de Feriet Award in 2016, the ACM/SIGART Autonomous Agents Research Award in 2011, the ACM/AAAI Newell Award in 2009 and the Edsger W. Dijkstra Prize in Distributed Computing, also in 2009. He has co-authored six patents and three books – “Reasoning About Knowledge,” “Reasoning about Uncertainty” and “Actual Causality.”

Halpern earned his Ph.D. in mathematics from Harvard in 1981 and worked at the IBM Almaden Research Center from 1982 to 1996. He was also a visiting scientist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a consulting professor at Stanford University before joining Cornell’s faculty in 1996. He served as chair of the computer science department from 2010 to 2014.

Halpern will be inducted into the NAE Oct. 5.

-- Chronicle story by Melanie Lefkowitz