SFU professor receives Distinguished Service Award

SFU computing science professor Fred Popowich is the 2017 recipient of the Distinguished Service Award from the Canadian Artificial Intelligence Association (CAIAC).

Presented this week at the Canadian Conference on Artificial Intelligence, Popowich was recognized for his outstanding service to the artificial intelligence (AI) community in Canada, and is the tenth person to receive the award since it was created in 1992.


Popowich received his Ph.D. in Artificial Intelligence from the University of Edinburgh, Scotland, and is now a faculty member in SFU’s School of Computing Science. He is a leading computer scientist who has helped establish SFU as a hub for for big data research, fostering connections between researchers and industry partners. He is the executive director of KEY, SFU’s Big Data Initiative, which engages people in advanced computing for innovation in teaching, research and community impact. Popowich is also the director of the Professional Master’s Program in Big Data, which was the first program of its kind in Canada when it launched in 2014.

Outside of SFU, Popowich is an integral member of the Canadian AI community. Currently, he is the president of the Canadian Network for Visual Analytics (CANVAC). He has also served as the president of the CAIAC (formerly known as the Canadian Society of Computational Study of Intelligence, or CSCSI), a founding director of AILIA, the Language Industry Association of Canada, as well as a founding director of the Vancouver Institute for Visual Analytics (VIVA).

Focused on solving real-world problems, Popowich’s research uses computers to process human language to improve the way we interact with computers, and with each other.

Read more about professor Fred Popowich >>