Invited Lecturers

(In alphabetical order)

Dr. Alistair Moffat

University of Melbourne

Alistair Moffat has been involved in research in text compression and information retrieval for more than three decades, and has published numerous papers in the areas of index compression, text compression, and dynamic pruning mechanisms, all of which help support efficient ranked querying. Alistair is a co-author of the 1994 (revised 1999) book Managing Gigabytes, and also co-author of the 2002 book Compression and Coding Algorithms. Much of Alistair's recent work has examined the issue of IR system evaluation, and, with other co-authors in Australia, he has focused on the relationship between models of user interactions with search results pages, and the effectiveness metrics that those interactions correspond to. Alistair was co-Chair for SIGIR 1998 in Melbourne, and for CIKM 2015, also held in Melbourne; and co-Program Committee Chair for SIGIR 2005 (Salvador, Brazil) and SIGIR 2015 (Santiago, Chile). WSDM, held in Melbourne in February 2019, was Alistair's most recent conference project. Alistair has been a teaching/research faculty member at the University of Melbourne since 1986, and was Department Chair from 2007-2011. During his career at Melbourne he has taught programming skills to well in excess of 15,000 undergraduate students, has authored a C programming textbook (Programming, Problem Solving, and Abstraction with C, 2003, revised 2012), and has received awards for his teaching and lecturing skills. Alistair's PhD was completed in 1985, at the University of Canterbury, in New Zealand, in the area of shortest path algorithms.

Prof. Chengxiang Zhai

University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

ChengXiang Zhai is a Donald Biggar Willett Professor in Engineering of the Department of Computer Science at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign (UIUC), where he is also affiliated with the Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology, School of Information Sciences, and Department of Statistics. He received a Ph.D. in Computer Science from Nanjing University in 1990, and a Ph.D. in Language and Information Technologies from Carnegie Mellon University in 2002. He worked at Clairvoyance Corp. as a Research Scientist and a Senior Research Scientist from 1997 to 2000. His research interests are in the general area of intelligent information systems, including specifically intelligent information retrieval, data mining, natural language processing, machine learning, and their applications in many areas. He has published over 300 papers with high citations, and a textbook on text data management and analysis, which is used worldwide by many learners of the two MOOCs that he offered on Coursera. He served as Associate Editors for major journals in multiple areas including information retrieval (ACM TOIS, IPM), data mining (ACM TKDD), and medical informatics (BMC MIDM), and as Program Co-Chairs of ACM SIGIR 2009 and WWW 2015. He is an ACM Fellow, an ACM Distinguished Scientist, and received numerous awards, including ACM SIGIR Test of Time Paper Award (three times), the 2004 Presidential Early Career Award for Scientists and Engineers (PECASE), an Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellowship, IBM Faculty Award, HP Innovation Research Award, and UIUC Campus Award for Excellence in Graduate Student Mentoring. More information about him and his work can be found from his homepage at

Dr. Dawei Yin

Dawei Yin is Senior Director at He is managing the recommendation engineering team, building the unified recommender system of He also founded Data Science Lab, leading the science efforts of recommendation, search, metrics and knowledge graph, etc.. Prior to joining, he was Senior Research Manager at Yahoo Labs, leading relevance science team and in charge of Core Search Relevance of Yahoo Search. He obtained Ph.D. (2013), M.S. (2010) from Lehigh University and B.S. (2006) from Shandong University. His research interests include data mining, applied machine learning, information retrieval and recommender system. He published tens of research papers in premium conferences and journals, and was the recipients of WSDM2016 best paper award, KDD2016 best paper award, and WSDM2018 best student paper award. More information about Dr. Yin can be found from

Dr. Daxin Jiang


Partner Chief Scientist of STC Asia, Microsoft. Leads an R&D group to build NLP applications and platforms, mainly serving for Bing and Cortana, but also contributing to Office, Xbox, XiaoICE, and Microsoft Cognitive Services. Years of experience of Research and Engineering in Machine Learning, Data Mining, Natural Language Processing, and Bioinformatics. Ph.D. in Computer Science from the Statue University of New York at Buffalo in 2005, Tenure-track Assistant Professor in the Computer Science and Engineering School of Nanyang Technological University, Singapore (2005-2006), and Lead Researcher in Microsoft Research Asia (2007-2011). Published 30+ papers in top conferences and journals with 3000+ citations. Won the SIGKDD Best Application Paper Award in 2008, and Runner-up in 2004.

Prof. Jian-Yun Nie

University of Montreal

Jian-Yun Nie is a professor in University of Montreal. His main research areas are information retrieval and natural language processing. His research spans a wide range of IR topics, including information retrieval models, cross-language information retrieval, query expansion and understanding, utilization of query logs, question answering, and so on. Jian-Yun Nie has published a number of papers in IR and NLP. He is on editorial board of 6 international journals, and regularly serves as PC member of the major conferences in these areas. Among other services, he has served as a general chair of SIGIR 2011, and a PC chair of SIGIR 2019.

Prof. Jun Xu

Renmin University of China

Dr. Jun Xu is a Professor at Renmin University of China. He received his Ph.D. in Computer Science from Nankai University in 2006. Jun Xu's research interests focus on applying machine learning to information retrieval. He has published about 50 papers and 1 monograph at top international journals and conferences, including TOIS, FnTIR, SIGIR, and ACL. His work on information retrieval has received the Best Paper Runner-up of ACM CIKM 2017 and Best Paper Award of AIRS 2010. Jun Xu has served or is serving international conferences as Senior PC member, including SIGIR, TheWebConf, AAAI, and ACML, and international journal of JASIST as editorial board member.

Prof. Maarten de Rijke

University of Amsterdam

Maarten de Rijke is University Professor of Artificial Intelligence and Information Retrieval at the University of Amsterdam. He holds MSc degrees in Philosophy and Mathematics (both cum laude), and a PhD in Theoretical Computer Science. He is a member of the Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences (KNAW) and a recipient of a Pioneer Personal Innovation grant, the Tony Kent Strix Award, the Bloomberg Data Science Research Award, the Criteo Faculty Research Award, the Google Faculty Research Award, the Microsoft PhD Research Fellowship Award, and the Yahoo Faculty and Research Engagement Program Award as well as a large number of NWO grants. He is the director of the newly established Innovation Center for Artificial Intelligence and a former director of Amsterdam Data Science. A Pionier personal innovational research incentives grant laureate (comparable to an advanced ERC grant), De Rijke has helped to generate over 65MEuro in project funding. With an h-index of 69 he has published over 750 papers, published or edited over a dozen books, is editor-in-chief of ACM Transactions on Information Systems, co-editor-in-chief of Foundations and Trends in Information Retrieval and of Springer’s Information Retrieval book series, (associate) editor for various journals and book series, and a current and former coordinator of retrieval evaluation tracks at TREC, CLEF and INEX. Recently, he was co-chair for SIGIR 2013, general co-chair for ECIR 2014, WSDM 2017, and ICTIR 2017, co-chair “web search systems and applications” for WWW 2015, short paper co-chair for SIGIR 2015, and program co-chair for information retrieval for CIKM 2015.

Prof. Mark Sanderson

RMIT University

Mark Sanderson is Professor of Information Retrieval at RMIT University where he is head of the RMIT Information Retrieval (IR) group. Mark received his Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of Glasgow, United Kingdom, in 1997. He has raised over $10 million dollars in grant income, published hundreds of papers, and has over 9,000 citations to his work. He has 25 current and/or past PhD students. In collaboration with one student, Mark was the first show the value of snippets, a component of search interfaces which are now a standard feature of all search engines. One of Mark's papers was given an honourable mention at SIGIR's 2017 test of time awards. Mark has been co-editor of Foundations and Trends in Information Retrieval; associate editor of IEEE TKDE, ACM TOIS, ACM TWeb, and IP&M; and served on the editorial boards of IRJ and JASIST. Mark was general chair of ACM SIGIR in 2004. He was a PC chair of ACM SIGIR 2009 & 2012; and ACM CIKM 2017. Prof Sanderson is also a visiting professor at NII in Tokyo.

Prof. Tetsuya Sakai

Waseda University

Tetsuya Sakai is a professor and the head of department at the Department of Computer Science and Engineering, Waseda University, Japan. He is also a visiting professor at the National Institute of Informatics. He joined Toshiba in 1993 and obtained a Ph.D from Waseda in 2000. From 2000 to 2001, he was supervised by the late Karen Sparck Jones at the Computer Laboratory, University of Cambridge, as a visiting researcher. In 2007, he joined NewsWatch, Inc. as the director of the Natural Language Processing Lab. In 2009, he joined Microsoft Research Asia. He joined the Waseda faculty in 2013. He was Associate Dean (IT Strategies Division) from 2015 to 2017. He is an editor-in-chief of the Information Retrieval Journal (Springer) and an associate editor of ACM TOIS. He is an ACM distinguished member. More information about Prof. Sakai can be found from