SIGCOMM Doctoral Dissertation Award for Outstanding PhD Thesis in Computer Networking and Data Communication
Minlan Yu’s PhD thesis concerns the design, implementation and evaluation of a scalable management architecture for enterprise and data center networks. Minlan’s research goes full circle, from important practical problems, to creative data structures and algorithms, to rigorous analysis and modeling, and finally to the design and implementation of novel systems. Minlan’s thesis is exceptional both in breadth and depth, with proven results on one of the world’s largest datacenters.
Michael Piatek’s PhD thesis concerns the design and construction of effective content distribution systems. Amongst other contributions, he uses a mix of clever analysis and experimentation to devise a new peer-to-peer system “BitTyrant” that greatly outperformed alternatives, and which has been downloaded more than a million times. Michael’s dissertation succeeds by delivering insightful theory, demonstrated in practice.
This annual award was created by SIGCOMM in 2011, and will recognize excellent thesis research by doctoral candidates in the field of computer networking and data communication. The SIGCOMM Doctoral Dissertation Award winner and up to two runners-up will be recognized at the ACM SIGCOMM conference. The award winner will receive a plaque, a $1,500 honorarium and a complimentary registration to the following year’s ACM SIGCOMM Conference. The runners-up each will receive a plaque.
Nominations are limited to one doctoral dissertation per department.
The final dissertation defense should take place at the nominee’s host institution during the 12 months before the submission deadline (see below).
Submissions must be received by the current SIGCOMM Awards Chair (Bruce Maggs) by November 30 of each year. Each submitted doctoral dissertation must be on a topic related to computer networking and data communication. The determination of whether a thesis is in scope for the award will be made by the Award Committee. Each nominated dissertation must also have been successfully defended by the candidate, and the final version of each nominated dissertation must have been accepted by the candidate's academic unit. An English-language version of the dissertation must be submitted with the nomination. A dissertation can be nominated for both the SIGCOMM Doctoral Dissertation Award and the ACM Doctoral Dissertation Award.
The Award Committee will inform the SIGCOMM Chair and the winner and runners-up of the results by December 31 of each year.
All nomination materials must be submitted electronically to the current Chair of the SIGCOMM Doctoral Dissertation Award by the submission deadline, and must be submitted in English. PDF format is preferred for all materials. Late submissions will not be considered.
Nominations for the award must include:
1. A statement summarizing the candidate’s PhD thesis contributions and potential impact, and justification of the nomination (no more than two pages);
2. The PhD thesis itself;
3. An endorsement letter by the department chair;
4. Three endorsement letters supporting the nomination including the significant PhD thesis contributions of the candidate. Each endorsement should be no longer than 500 words with clear specification of the nominee’s PhD thesis contributions and potential impact on the computer networking field;
5. A concise statement (one sentence) of the PhD thesis contribution for which the award is being given. This statement will appear on the plaque and on the SIGCOMM website.
The nomination rules are:
1. The nominee must be a SIGCOMM member.
2. No self-nomination is allowed.
3. Each nominated dissertation must have been accepted (successfully defended) by the department within a 12-month period prior to the submission deadline.
Award Selection Committee
The Award Selection Committee will consist of three SIGCOMM members, one of whom will be appointed as the Selection Committee chair. Award committee members will be appointed by the current SIGCOMM awards chair. The committee chair will adjudicate conflicts of interest, appointing substitutes to the committee as necessary. Committee members may remain on the committee for up to four years.
Resolution of Conflict of Interest
A member of the award selection committee who has a potential conflict of interest should report it to the committee chair, and the committee chair will determine whether a conflict exists. If the conflict exists, the committee chair and the SIGCOMM awards chair will replace the member of the award selection committee with another volunteer.
A potential conflict of interest occurs when a person is involved in making a decision that:
Some examples of instances of associations that could cause a conflict of interest are: