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Immigration scholar, scientific computing leader receive Vilas honors

April 11, 2023 By Chris Barncard
Two headshots side by side. On the left, Stacy J. Lee smiles to the camera. She has short dark hair and glasses and is wearing a red and white silk scarf around her neck. On the right, Miron Livny smiles to the camera. He has short brown and gray hair and glasses. He is wearing a light yellow button-down shirt.

Researchers Stacey J. Lee and Miron Livny have been named have been named the 2023 Vilas Research Professors for their respective contributions in education and computer science scholarship.

Pioneering University of Wisconsin–Madison researchers Stacey J. Lee, a scholar of the education of immigrant communities, and Miron Livny, a leader in high-throughput computing, have been named Vilas Research Professors.

Created for the advancement of learning and supported by the estate of professor, U.S. senator and UW Regent William F. Vilas (1840-1908), Vilas Research Professorships are granted to University of Wisconsin–Madison faculty with proven research ability and unusual qualifications and promise. The recipients of the award have contributed significantly to the research mission of the university and are recognized both nationally and internationally among the leaders in their field.

Lee, the Frederick Erickson Wisconsin Alumni Research Professor of Educational Policy Studies and associate dean for education in the School of Education, focuses her research on the role education plays in incorporating children from immigrant and refugee backgrounds into the United States and the impact the process has on larger immigrant and refugee communities. Her work highlights the relationship between national and local contexts — including policies, educational practices and social attitudes — in shaping opportunities for immigrant and migrant students.

A pioneering scholar on the role of education in the racialization of diverse groups of Asian American youth, Lee has published three books, co-edited three more and served as an editor of Anthropology & Education Quarterly. She has received distinguished achievement awards from the American Educational Studies Association and the Council on Anthropology and Education of American Anthropological Association.

Livny, the John P. Morgridge Professor of Computer Sciences, is founding director of the Center for High Throughput Computing. His early research established an understanding of how scientific discovery can be advanced by communities of autonomous, networked computers. Livny pioneered methodologies of high-throughput computing and built the widely adopted HTCondor Software Suite, which facilitates the management and sharing of (often huge assemblages of) data through computing tasks handled by distributed computing resources.

The principles that underpin Livny’s work formed shared research computing on the UW–Madison campus and have also been used in some of the world’s largest scientific endeavors — including Nobel Prize-winning discoveries like the discovery of the Higgs boson in 2012.

Vilas Research Professorships include additional salary and $50,000 in flexible research funding.