Awards and Honors

Nancy Leveson

Merton C. Flemings, the Toyota Professor Emeritus in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering and director of the Lemelson-MIT Program, has been awarded an honorary doctorate by the Swiss Institute of Technology in Lausanne for "his role as pioneer and for his exceptional scientific contributions in the field of solidification and foundry."

David E. Pritchard, the Cecil and Ida Green Professor of Physics, has received the Optical Society of America's Max Born Award. The award, given annually to recognize outstanding contributions to physical optics, theoretical or experimental, honors Pritchard for his work in the "creative application of light to new forms of spectroscopy, to manipulation and trapping of atoms, and for pioneering the new fields of atom optics and atom interferometry."

Margaret Hiesinger, a graduate student in the Program in Science, Technology and Society, has been named a Luce Scholar. The Henry Luce Foundation provides stipends and internships for 15 young Americans to live and work in Asia each year. Established in 1974, the Luce program's purpose is to increase awareness of Asia among future leaders in American society.

Sean Safford, a doctoral candidate at the Sloan School of Management and a research associate with the Industrial Performance Center, won the 2005 Pondy Award for the best paper based on a dissertation, conferred by the organization and management theory division of the Academy of Management. Safford's paper is titled "Why the Garden Club Couldn't Save Youngstown: Networks and Economic Divergence in the Rustbelt."

Assistant Professor of History Christopher Capozzola is one of 15 new Carnegie Scholars. The scholars, selected by the Carnegie Corp., receive research funding of up to $100,000 each for a maximum of two years. Capozzola's Carnegie project is titled "Uncle Sam Wants You: Political Obligations in World War I America."

The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers has named Alan S. Willsky, the Edwin Sibley Webster Professor of Electrical Engineering, as recipient of the IEEE Donald G. Fink Paper Award for his paper, "Multiresolution [MR] Markov Models for Signal and Image Processing." The award is given to the most outstanding survey, review or tutorial paper published in any IEEE transaction, journal or magazine. "Willsky's thorough guide to MR methods, concept and applications is expected to serve as a valuable reference work for years to come," his citation read.

Zeynep Çelik, a graduate student in architecture, has won the Dedalus Foundation's 2004 Dissertation Fellowship Award, given annually to a student at an American university working on a Ph.D. dissertation related to modern art and modernism. The award comes with a $20,000 stipend. Çelik's dissertation is titled "The Kinaesthetic Impulse: Space, Performance and the Body in German Architecture, 1880-1914."

Joel Cutcher-Gershenfeld, a senior research scientist in the Sloan School, has received a Fulbright Senior Specialists grant in business administration at the University of Sydney's Faculty of Economics and Business. The Fulbright Senior Specialists Program offers two- to six-week grants to leading U.S. academics and professionals to work at academic institutions in 140 countries.

"The traditional Fulbright Scholar Program offers grants ranging from two months to an academic year, and some academics and professionals find it difficult to be away overseas for that length of time," said Patti McGill Peterson, executive director of the Council for International Exchange of Scholars, the organization that manages the Fulbright Scholar Program.

The Women's Commission for Refugee Women and Children has honored Carol Makinson, executive director of the Center for International Studies, with a "Voices of Courage" award for her "instrumental role in putting reproductive health for refugees on the international agenda." Makinson, formerly program officer for Population at the Mellon Foundation, chairs an NIH review panel on grants for international collaboration on research and training in the population field.

Richard Larson, professor of civil engineering and of engineering systems, has won the Harold Larnder Prize, which is financed through the Harold Larnder Memorial Trust of the Canadian Operational Research Society. The prize is awarded annually to an individual who has achieved international distinction in operational research. Larson is also director of LINC (Learning International Networks Consortium), an international community of practitioners and scholars interested in bringing quality tertiary education to developing countries.

MIT is co-recipient of the Cambridge City Council's GoGreen Business Award in the large business category for energy. Other recipients were the Harvard Green Campus Initiative and Genzyme. MIT received the award for its Community Solar Power Initiative (see MIT Tech Talk, Oct. 30, 2002) and other efforts to promote energy efficiency and renewable energy. The solar power initiative (, managed by Laxmi Rao of Facilities, offers assistance and financial incentives for installing photovoltaic arrays on campus buildings as well as homes and businesses of MIT affiliates in certain communities. MIT also won the GoGreen award in 2001.

Professor Nancy Leveson of the Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics and the Engineering Systems Division has been awarded the Outstanding Research Award by the Association for Computing Machinery's Special Interest Group on Software Engineering (SIGSOFT). Alex Wolf, chair of SIGSOFT, wrote that Leveson's "contributions to the development of software safety have had a deep and lasting impact on software engineering."

Two Broad Institute postdoctoral fellows, Brad Bernstein and Vamsi Mootha, have received Burroughs Wellcome Fund Career Awards in the Biomedical Sciences. Each will receive $500,000 over five years toward postdoctoral training and early years of faculty service.

Bernstein, who is also a postdoctoral fellow at Harvard University, is developing genomic and proteomic methods to identify chemical variations in histones. Mootha, an instructor in medicine at Harvard Medical School, uses genomics, proteomics and computation to decipher the cell's instructions for making mitochondria.

Six members of the MIT community have been elected to the American Philosophical Society (APS). They are senior research scientist Timothy Berners-Lee of the Computer Science and Artificial Intelligence Lab, Institute Professor Noam Chomsky of linguistics, Professor H. Robert Horvitz of biology, a Nobel laureate, and Professor JoAnne Stubbe of chemistry and biology. Newly elected alumni are chemistry professors John I. Brauman (S.B. 1959), of Stanford University and Peter H. von Hippel (S.B. 1952, S.M., Ph.D.) of the University of Oregon.

A version of this article appeared in MIT Tech Talk on June 2, 2004 (download PDF).

Topics: Awards, honors and fellowships

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