Azer Bestavros is a Professor in the Computer Science Department at Boston University, which he joined in 1991 and chaired from 2000 to 2007. He is the Founding Director of the BU Hariri Institute for Computing, set up in 2011 to support "a community of scholars who believe in the transformative potential of computational perspectives in research and education." In this capacity, he has led major university initiatives, including chairing the Data Science Initiative launched in 2014 to "leverage BU’s strength and expand its capacity to lead in the Big Data revolution", co-chairing the Council on Educational Technology & Learning Innovation tasked in 2012 with "development of BU's strategy for leveraging on-line technology in residential programs", and leading BU's role in the conception of the Massachusetts Green High-Performance Computing Center and co-chairing its research, education, and outreach mission since 2010. He received a number of awards for distinguished teaching, research, and service, including the ACM Sigmetrics Inaugural Test of Time Award for research "whose impact is still felt 10-15 years after its initial publication" and the United Methodist Scholar Teacher Award in recognition of "outstanding dedication and contributions to the learning arts and to the institution."
Dr. Bestavros pursues research in networking, distributed computing, and high-assurance systems. His seminal contributions include pioneering studies of web push caching through content distribution networks, self-similar Internet traffic characterization, game-theoretic cloud resource management, and safety certification of networked systems and software. His currently active projects include the Modular Approach to Cloud Security, the Smart-city Cloud-based Open Platform and Ecosystem, and the Massachusetts Open Cloud. As of 2016, funded by over $25M from government and industry sponsors, his research yielded 18 PhD theses, 7 issued patents, 2 startups, and hundreds of refereed papers with over 16,600 citations according to Google Scholar.
Dr. Bestavros has a long track record of service to the research community. Most recently, he chaired the 2014 CISE/CNS Committee of Visitors to review NSF operation and processes; served on the inaugural advisory board of the congressional Cloud Computing Caucus set up in 2013 to raise public awareness and educate lawmakers on cloud technologies; and served for seven years until 2012 as chair of the IEEE Computer Society TC on the Internet. He is currently on the editorial board of Communications of the ACM as co-editor of its Research Highlights, which publishes the most-influential and most-read articles in CS.Dr. Bestavros obtained his PhD in Computer Science in 1992 from Harvard University, under Thomas E. Cheatham, one of the "roots" of the academic genealogy of applied computer scientists.