John Tsitsiklis, an MIT professor of electrical engineering and computer science, has been appointed director of the Laboratory for Information and Decision Systems (LIDS), and associate director of the Institute for Data, Systems, and Society, effective April 1. Tsitsiklis has previously served as acting co-director and co-associate director of LIDS, and as a co-director of the Operations Research Center.
"The fields that the faculty, students, and staff in LIDS are working on — network science, communications, data analytics, optimization, control, and more — are experiencing unprecedented growth, and represent some of the most important frontiers in engineering," says Ian A. Waitz, dean of the School of Engineering and the Jerome C. Hunsaker Professor in the Department of Aeronautics and Astronautics. “I am delighted to have John, who is a distinguished scholar and is deeply committed to our educational enterprise, in such a key role.”
Tsitsiklis replaces Asu Ozdaglar, professor and associate head of the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, who has served as director of LIDS since 2014. “Asu has been a dedicated and thoughtful leader of LIDS,” Waitz notes. “LIDS remains a world-class research environment and is contributing more than ever to this growing field."
Tsitsiklis's research interests are in the theory and application of optimization in stochastic, dynamic, and distributed systems. He is a coauthor of several noted books on distributed computation, linear optimization, and probability, and he holds seven U.S. patents.
Tsitsiklis studied mathematics and electrical engineering as an undergraduate, and earned his PhD in electrical engineering from MIT in 1984. He was an acting assistant professor of electrical engineering at Stanford University in 1983-84, then came to the Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at MIT, where he is currently the Clarence J. Lebel Professor of Electrical Engineering. He is a member of the National Academy of Engineering and holds an honorary doctorate from the Catholic University of Louvain.