Greek researcher awarded prestigious McKnight Presidential Endowed Chair
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Greek researcher awarded prestigious McKnight Presidential Endowed Chair

University of Minnesota Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering Professor Georgios Giannakis has been awarded a prestigious McKnight Presidential Endowed Chair by University President Eric Kaler. This is one of the University’s highest faculty awards. Professor Giannakis, who also serves as director of the University’s Digital Technology Center, is only the third professor in the University’s College of Science and Engineering to receive the honor.

The Presidential Endowed Chair acknowledges the critical contributions of important University faculty who have distinguished themselves and their departments in the missions of research, education and public engagement. Recipients are recommended by their college and chosen at the discretion of the president based on their academic and research accomplishments and their contributions to advancing the University among its peers.

“Georgios is a field-shaping scholar in the areas of communications and signal processing, especially as it relates to wireless technologies,” said Steven Crouch, dean of the University of Minnesota College of Science and Engineering. “I believe he is most deserving of this special recognition.”

Giannakis has authored more than 380 journal articles and 650 refereed conference proceedings publications with more than 52,000 Google Scholar citations. In addition, he has authored seven books and numerous book chapters.

He holds 28 patents in wireless technologies, several related to the 4G LTE standard. More recently, Giannakis has been a pace-setting leader in bringing the power of statistical signals and system theory to the emerging challenges in the smart grid and the integration of renewable energy systems into the grid.

Giannakis has served as director of the University of Minnesota’s Digital Technology Center since 2008. He also has held the ADC Endowed Chair in Wireless Telecommunications since 2001.

Giannakis has advised or co-advised 42 Ph.D. students and 55 post-doctoral fellows. He has led more than 60 sponsored projects with funding in excess of $15 million.

Giannakis has received numerous awards from the University and professional organizations, including being named the inaugural recipient of the Fourier Technical Field Award in Signal Processing by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) in 2015.

Giannakis received his undergraduate degree in electrical and electronic engineering from the National Technical University of Athens, Greece in 1981. He went on to receive master’s degrees in electrical engineering and mathematics in 1983 and 1986 and a Ph.D. in electrical engineering in 1986, all from the University of Southern California. After serving as a professor at the University of Virginia, Giannakis joined the University of Minnesota faculty in 1999.