Prof. Shih-Fu Chang to Serve as Interim Dean of Columbia Engineering

March 27, 2021

Dear fellow members of the Columbia community:

I write to announce that I have asked Shih-Fu Chang to serve as interim dean of The Fu Foundation School of Engineering and Applied Science (SEAS), and he has graciously accepted. His term will begin on July 1, 2021, when Columbia Engineering Dean Mary C. Boyce assumes her role as provost. Professor Chang is currently senior executive vice dean at SEAS, the Richard Dicker Professor with appointments in the Electrical Engineering Department and the Computer Science Department, and director of the Columbia Center of Artificial Intelligence Technology in collaboration with Amazon.

Professor Chang began his career at Columbia as an assistant professor in the Department of Electrical Engineering in 1993. He brings to this new role as interim dean extensive experience in high-level academic administration. From the start of Mary Boyce’s tenure at SEAS, he has been an indispensable partner and colleague to her, helping to shape the mission of Columbia Engineering and to strengthen its standing among the top engineering schools in the nation. Professor Chang was instrumental in developing Columbia Engineering for Humanity, a commitment to serving the public good through work across disciplines, departments, and schools. He was also responsible for creating University-wide, cross-disciplinary initiatives for SEAS, collaborating with outside industry experts and companies to create research centers, and advancing diversity, equity, and inclusion programs within the School.

Shih-Fu Chang is also an admired scientist whose research focuses on artificial intelligence, multimedia content analysis, and computer vision. He develops systems that can extract information from content including images, video, and audio. His projects have led to breakthroughs with significant real-world applications, including tools that prevent human trafficking and those that provide image recognition capabilities to journalists and public health professionals. His work has appeared in more than 350 peer-reviewed publications, and he has been issued over 30 patents.

I will soon be forming a search committee for Mary Boyce’s successor and I am deeply grateful to Shih-Fu for agreeing to provide interim leadership for SEAS as that work proceeds. Please join me in congratulating him on this appointment.

Lee C. Bollinger