Hazem Hajj, PhD

Associate Professor, Dept of ECE, American University of Beirut

Short Bio

Hazem Hajj is an Associate Professor with the American University of Beirut (AUB) and a senior member of IEEE. Over the years, Hazem has established a strong mix of both industry and academics backgrounds. He has over 20 years of experience as a scientist and a technical leader. Hazem joined AUB in 2008, and got promoted to Associate Professor in 2013. During the 2015 Academic year, he was a visiting Associate Professor at the University of Texas-Austin. Before joining AUB, Hazem was a principal engineer at Intel Corporation, where he spent 12 years. He received his PhD from the University of Wisconsin-Madison in 1996, and his Bachelor from AUB with distinction.
Over the years, Hazem has been the recipient of numerous academic and industry awards, including: The Excellence in Teaching Award at the American University of Beirut University , The Distinguished Scholar Award, the University of Texas Austin Regional Initiative Faculty Fellowship, 6 Teaching Awards at the University of Wisconsin-Madison including the most prestigious Teaching Excellence Award, and 7 industry awards at Intel Corporation.
Hazem’s research interests have focused on Machine Learning algorithms and platforms with special interests in Opinion Mining, Context Aware Sensing, and Platforms for Accelerating Machine Learning Algorithms. He has over 100 research publications in reputable journals and international conferences. He research has been funded by local and international funding sources, including funding Intel Corporation, Qatar National Regional Fund (QNRF), and King Abdul Aziz for Science and Technology (KACST).

Research Interest

My research is in the general area of Machine learning (ML) which aims at enabling data mining and providing machines with software programs that automate tasks to help humans in their daily chores and achieve a more comfortable living. Towards this objective, one of my research has been in opinion mining, which aims at deriving new algorithms that can help automatically detect people’s sentiments and emotions. The goal is to provide decision makers a platform that can be used to assess people’s concerns so that decisions can be made to reinforce people’s well-being. My second research area of ML applications is in context aware sensing, which aims at recognizing a person’s surrounding and context as they play key factors in influencing a user’s state of mind. The goal is to have machines automatically make sense of the world around and once the machine is aware of the context, the machine can make life improvement decisions on behalf of its user. My third area of research aims at enabling ML advances in general and overcome computational barriers with ML centric designs for efficient data processing. The ML processes to teach machines be like humans demands heavy computations in solving large scale mathematical optimization problems and communicating large amounts of data. As a result, despite the significant advances in computing performance, ML advances are still limited by the lack of significantly faster solutions often constrained by energy impacts.

Teaching Interests 

Hazem has taught undergraduate and graduate courses in Electrical and Computer Engineering. His undergraduate courses have included introductory courses to programming, circuits, and signal processing as well a senior course on database system. His graduate courses have focused on data mining and machine learning advances. Hazem is driven by four principles: Passion for teaching, caring for the students, a desire for continuous learning, and doing the best he can.

Academic Positions
  • Associate Professor, Dept of ECE, American University of Beirut 2013 – present
    • Visiting Associate Professor, Dept of ECE, University of Texas-Austin 2015 – Sep. 2016
    • Conducted research on:
    • Designing machine learning algorithms and resources for:
      • Natural language processing (NLP) and opinion mining for Arabic (OMA)
      • Context aware sensing and design of efficient sensing strategies for IoT applications
      • Emotion recognition
    • Designing systems and algorithms to enable faster processing and communication of data for Machine Learning:
      • Design of cloud architecture for accelerated machine learning
      • Design of accelerated convolutional networks
      • Design of energy efficient communication strategies in dense networks
    • Published 20 journal papers in top international refereed journals such as IEEE Transactions and ACM Transaction. Also published 36 conference papers in top international refereed conferences, mostly sponsored by IEEE and ACM.
    • Filed for 2 patent inventions on context aware sensing.
    • Supervising (co-supervising 3): 4 Post-docs, 6 PhD (3 completed and 3 in progress), and 12 Master students (4 completed and 8 in progress).
    • Secured Funding for projects with over $2 Million dollars from international sources including: Qatar National Research Foundation (QNRF), Intel Corporation, and King Abdul Aziz for Science and Technology (KACST). Additional funding obtained from local sources: AUB URB, AUB Farook Jabre, AUB CRS, AUB Masri Institute.
    • Awarded 2018 American University of Beirut Teaching Excellence Award
    • Invited keynote presentations and invited talks at international conferences. Actively participated in technical societies and reviews of academic publications.
    • Active service record for the department, faculty, and the university. Includes the introduction of a new course to all of engineering students at AUB.
    • Current research focuses on:
    • Advancing opinion mining techniques for Arabic
    • Designing algorithms to mimic human cognitive intelligence and human learning with little data.

 

  • Assistant Professor, Dept of ECE, American University of Beirut 2008 – Sep. 2013
    • Conducted research on:
      • Energy aware computing.
      • Machine learning algorithms for failure analysis in semiconductor manufacturing and security intrusion.
      • Machine learning algorithms and end to end system for well being.
      • Emotion recognition from multiple modalities.
      • Sentiment analysis for Arabic.
      • Efficient sensor operation for accurate machine learning.
    • Published 7 journal papers and 34 conference papers. Most in top international refereed journal and conference venues mostly sponsored by IEEE and ACM.
    • Secured Funding for projects with over $2.5 Million dollars from international sources including: Intel Corporation, Qatar National Research Foundation (QNRF), and King Abdul Aziz for Science and Technology (KACST). Additional funding obtained from local sources: LNCSR and AUB URB.
    • Supervised: 3 PhD (3 completed while in Associate rank), and 8 Master students (8 completed while in rank).
    • Active service record for the department and faculty including chairing and participating in multiple committees. 
  • Lecturer, Dept of ECE, University of Wisconsin Madison Sep 1989 – May 1993
    • Was the instructor of record for non-major classes taken by junior/senior students, which included giving lectures, holding office hours, preparing exams and evaluated an average of fifty students per semester. I turned an unpopular required class to one of the most popular classes, which led the students to vote me “Best Instructor in Engineering!” 
    • Won 7 teaching awards from 1989 to 1993:
      • University Teaching Assistant Mentor Award, UW-Madison 1992-1993,
      • University Excellence in Teaching Award, UW-Madison 1992*,
      • Department Excellence in Teaching Award, UW-Madison 1992,
      • Department Teaching Assistant Fellow, UW-Madison 1992,
      • Polygon Outstanding Teaching Award, UW-Madison 1992,
      • Polygon Outstanding Teaching Award, UW-Madison 1991
      • * Most prestigious award:  University Excellence in Teaching Award, UW-Madison 1992. 
  • Instructor, American University of Beirut; Beirut-Lebanon July 1993 – Aug 1993
    • Taught Numerical Methods for Engineers to a group of forty computer engineers, held office hours, prepared exams and project assignments 
  • Project Assistant, University of Wisconsin Hospital; Wisconsin-Madison             May 1991 – Aug 1991
    • Designed an oscilloscope simulator using LabVIEW.
Teaching Activities
FALL/SPRING Analog Signal Processing EECE 290
FALL/SPRING Introduction to Engineering FEAA 200
FALL/SPRING Electric Circuits EECE 210
FALL/SPRING Special Topics – Introduction to Natural Language Processing EECE 798
FALL/SPRING Lab Manual for Data Structure EECE 330
FALL/SPRING Graduate Seminars EECE 797
Fall 2018-2019 Database Management Systems EECE 433
Fall 2018-2019 FYP ECCE 501
Fall 2018-2019 Lab for Database Management Systems EECE 433
Fall 2018-2019 Undergraduate Research Fall EECE 499
Fall 2018-2019 Data Mining EECE 633
Spring 2017-2018 Advanced Data Mining EECE 639
Spring 2017-2018 Undergraduate Research Spring EECE 499
Spring 2017-2018 Introduction to Programming EECE 230
Spring 2017-2018 FYP EECE 502
Publications
Professional Societies
2008 – Present IEEE Brain Community Member
2008 – Present IEEE Big Data Community Member
2008 – Present IEEE Signal Processing Society Member
2008 – Present IEEE Sensors Council Member
2008 – Present Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) Senior Member
2008 – Present IEEE Computational Intelligence Society (CI) Member
2008 – Present Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) Member
Education
1989 – 1996 University of Wisconsin-Madison Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)
1988 – 1989 University of Wisconsin Madison Master of Science (MS)
1983 – 1987 American University of Beirut Bachelor of Engineering (BE)
Work Experience
2013 – Present Associate Professor American University of Beirut
2008 – 2013 Assistant Professor American University of Beirut
1996 – 2008 Automation R&D Intel Corporation
1994 – 1996 Staff Scientist – Computer Vision R&D Innovision Corporation
1993 – 1993 Instructor American University of Beirut
1989 – 1993 Lecturer University of Wisconsin Madison
1991 – 1991 Project Assistant University of Wisconsin Hospital
1987 – 1988 Field Engineer Cedarnet Company
Honors and Awards
 

2018 American University of Beirut Teaching Excellence Award American University of Beirut
2015 University of Texas (UT) Austin Regional Initiative Faculty Fellowship University of Texas Austin
2005 TMG Excellence Award for successful delivery of first Industry IA-based Manufacturing Execution System Intel Q1
2005 Logic Technology Division Recognition Award Intel Q4
2003 TMG Excellence Award for establishing Industry Leadership in Advanced Process Control enabling Process Development and 200/300 mm manufacturing Intel Q3
2001 Logic Technology Development Team Quality Award in recognition of y our leadership in introducing NT-based Station Controllers into FAB and Sort Intel Q1
2000 Logic Technology Development Team Quality Award in recognition of your outstanding contribution to improvement of Client Reliability Intel Q1
1997 TMG Cross-Organization Awards Intel
1992 Polygon Outstanding Teaching Award UW-Madison
1992 Department Teaching Assistant Fellow UW-Madison
1992 University Excellence in Teaching Award UW-Madison
1992 University Teaching Assistant Mentor Award UW-Madison
1992 Department Excellence in Teaching Award UW-Madison
1991 Polygon Outstanding Teaching Award UW-Madison
Get In Touch

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Electrical and Computer Engineering

hh63@aub.edu.lb

Primary Office: Bechtel Engineering Bldg, 507

Extension: 3535

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