Zoubin Ghahramani

Zoubin Ghahramani
Zoubin Ghahramani in 2015, portrait from the Royal Society
Born (1970-02-08) 8 February 1970 (age 53)
Alma mater
Known for
AwardsFRS (2015)
Scientific career
ThesisComputation and Psychophysics of Sensorimotor Integration (1995)
Doctoral advisor

Zoubin Ghahramani FRS (Persian: زوبین قهرمانی; born 8 February 1970) is a British-Iranian researcher and Professor of Information Engineering at the University of Cambridge. He holds joint appointments at University College London and the Alan Turing Institute. and has been a Fellow of St John's College, Cambridge since 2009. He was Associate Research Professor at Carnegie Mellon University School of Computer Science from 2003–2012. He was also the Chief Scientist of Uber from 2016 until 2020. He joined Google Brain in 2020 as senior research director. He is also Deputy Director of the Leverhulme Centre for the Future of Intelligence.


Ghahramani was educated at the American School of Madrid in Spain and the University of Pennsylvania where he was awarded a double major degree in Cognitive Science and Computer Science in 1990. He obtained his Ph.D. from the Department of Brain and Cognitive Sciences at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, supervised by Michael I. Jordan and Tomaso Poggio.

Research and career

Following his Ph.D., Ghahramani moved to the University of Toronto in 1995 as a Postdoctoral Fellow in the Artificial Intelligence Lab, working with Geoffrey Hinton. From 1998 to 2005, he was a member of the faculty at the Gatsby Computational Neuroscience Unit, University College London.

Ghahramani has made significant contributions in the areas of Bayesian machine learning (particularly variational methods for approximate Bayesian inference), as well as graphical models and computational neuroscience. His current research focuses on nonparametric Bayesian modelling and statistical machine learning. He has also worked on artificial intelligence, information retrieval, bioinformatics and statistics which provide the mathematical foundations for handling uncertainty, making decisions, and designing learning systems. He has published over 200 papers, receiving over 80,000 citations (an h-index of 120).

He co-founded Geometric Intelligence in 2014, with Gary Marcus, Doug Bemis, and Ken Stanley, which was acquired by Uber in 2016. Afterwards, he transferred to Uber's AI Labs in 2016, and later became Chief Scientist at Uber, replacing Gary Marcus. In 2020 he joined Google and became the Sr. Director of Google Brain in April 2021 after Samy Bengio's departure.

Awards and honors

Ghahramani was elected Fellow of the Royal Society (FRS) in 2015. His certificate of election reads:

Zoubin Ghahramani is a world leader in the field of machine learning, significantly advancing the state-of-the-art in algorithms that can learn from data. He is known in particular for fundamental contributions to probabilistic modeling and Bayesian nonparametric approaches to machine learning systems, and to the development of approximate variational inference algorithms for scalable learning. He is one of the pioneers of semi-supervised learning methods, active learning algorithms, and sparse Gaussian processes. His development of novel infinite dimensional nonparametric models, such as the infinite latent feature model, has been highly influential.

He was awarded the Royal Society Milner Award in 2021 in recognition of ‘his fundamental contributions to probabilistic machine learning’.

This page was last updated at 2023-11-30 12:01 UTC. Update now. View original page.

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