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Chiang Receives Awards from Google and Amazon

Virginia Watterson • DATE: February 23, 2017

Dr. David Chiang received awards from both Google and Amazon to support the research of three PhD students in the fields of deep learning and natural language processing.

The Google Faculty Research Award is Google’s biannual award for research proposals in Computer Science and related topics, including machine learning, machine perception, natural language processing, and security. The grants provide both faculty and students the opportunity to work directly with Google researchers and engineers. This round, Google Research received 876 proposals covering 44 countries and over 300 universities. Of these, 143 were funded.

The Amazon Academic Research Awards (AARA) program funds academic research and related contributions to open source projects by top academic researchers throughout the world. AARA awards aim to fund projects leading toward a Ph.D. degree or conducted as a part of post-doctoral work. This year, the AARA solicited proposals in research areas including machine translation and computer vision.

Both of Chiang's projects funded by the awards apply neural networks (deep learning) to human language. The project funded by Google is entitled "Neural Pushdown and Tree-Stack Automata." It will develop new models for learning the syntax of natural language, drawing on ideas from formal language theory and parsing theory. The project funded by Amazon is entitled "New Directions for Whole-Sentence Training of Neural Translation Models" and will investigate better ways for neural networks to learn how to translate human languages, drawing on Chiang's previous work in statistical machine translation.

For Google's complete announcement, see googleblogThe official program page can be found at researchgoogle.