ACM and Infosys Foundation announced last week that Dr. Sanjeev Arora of Princeton University is the recipient of the 2011 ACM-Infosys Foundation Award in the Computing Sciences for innovative approaches to problem solving.
Arora’s research revolutionized the approach to essentially unsolvable problems that have long bedeviled the computing field, the so-called NP-complete problems, according to a press release.
These results have had implications for problems common to cryptography, computational biology, and computer vision among other fields.
The Charles Fitzmorris Professor of Computer Science at Princeton, Arora was a co-winner of both the 2001 and 2010 Gödel Prize, an award sponsored jointly by the European Association for Theoretical Computer Science and ACM's Special Interest Group on Algorithms and Computation Theory.
The Indian American computer scientist was named an ACM Fellow in 2008, and a co-winner of the ACM Doctoral Dissertation Award in 1995. He coauthored “Computational Complexity: A Modern Approach” with Boaz Barak, which has become a popular text in higher education.
A graduate of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology with a B.S. degree in mathematics and computer science, Arora earned a Ph.D. degree in computer science from the University of California, Berkeley. He also attended the Indian Institute of Technology at Kanpur for two years before moving to the United States.
Arora was the founding director of the Center for Computational Intractability, which addresses the phenomenon that many problems seem inherently impossible to solve on current computational models.
The organization, a joint venture of Princeton University, the Institute for Advanced Study, Rutgers University, and New York University, is funded by a grant from the National Science Foundation. It is devoted to designing new approaches to fundamental problems in computing as well as other sciences.