Published: May 2020, Issue: Vol. 32/No. 5 Download as PDF

Archive of articles published in the May 2020, Vol. 32/No. 5 issue.


CRA and CCC Announce New Computing Innovation Fellows Program for 2020

CRA and CCC are pleased to announce a new Computing Innovation Fellows (CIFellows) Program for 2020. This program recognizes the significant disruption to the academic job search caused by the COVID-19 pandemic and associated economic uncertainty and aims to provide a career-enhancing bridge experience for recent and soon-to-be PhD graduates in computing. 

The goal of the program is to create career growth opportunities that support maintaining the computing research pipeline. This effort takes inspiration from CRA/CCC’s NSF-funded Computing Innovation Fellows Programs with cohorts starting 2009, 2010, and 2011. The program will offer 2 year postdoctoral opportunities in computing, with cohort activities to support career development and community building for this group of Fellows.

We will be hosting a one-hour CIFellow 2020 Informational Webinar on Tuesday, May 26th at 3:00PM ET.  Please register for the webinar here.

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2019 Taulbee Survey: Total Undergrad CS Enrollment Rises Again, but with Fewer New Majors; Doctoral Degree Production Recovers from Last Year’s Dip

This article and the accompanying figures and tables present the results from the 49th annual CRA Taulbee Survey, which documents trends in student enrollment, degree production, employment of graduates, and faculty salaries in academic units in the United States and Canada that grant the Ph.D. in computer science, computer engineering, or information.

We thank all of the respondents to this year’s questionnaire. CRA member respondents will again be given the opportunity to obtain certain survey information for a self-selected peer group. Instructions for doing this will be emailed to all such departments.

Update on 2020 CRA Conference at Snowbird

After careful consideration of the current and projected situation surrounding the pandemic, CRA’s 2020 Conference at Snowbird planning committee has unfortunately decided to cancel the in-person conference scheduled to take place at Snowbird, Utah, July 21-23, 2020.

We trust you find this decision as disappointing as we do. For nearly 50 years, we have had the honor of bringing the leadership of the computing research community together every other year at Snowbird for the benefit of the community. But given the uncertainty surrounding travel and large gatherings this summer, and the need to come to a decision in sufficient time to allow our participants to make plans, we cannot commit to holding the in-person portion of the conference this year.

In place of the in-person event, we are currently exploring options to provide a virtual conference during the dates of July 21-23. The virtual conference agenda will be specialized to include content we feel is necessary for the community to hear and engage with, useful in understanding and operating in the current environment, or of sufficient general interest to merit inclusion. We are now moving forward with plans to hold a full in-person Conference at Snowbird in late July/early August 2021 and will resume our regular conference pattern of every other year with a conference in 2022 and subsequent even number years. Future dates are subject to change.

We’ll share additional details on our plans in the coming weeks. In the meantime, thanks for your patience and understanding during this unprecedented time.

If you have any questions about the conference, please direct them to

What’s Happening with the Federal Budget, Particularly with the Research Agencies, During the Pandemic?

It should come as no surprise that the normal operations of official Washington have been heavily disrupted by the COVID-19 pandemic. Current events have derailed almost every aspect of the usual budget process. In terms of emergency funding, the CARES Act, passed at the end of March, has about $180 million dollars in emergency research funding for NIH, NSF, DOE Office of Science, and NIST. As well, there was about another $86 million for three agencies (NASA, NOAA, and NIST) to support “continuity of operations;” i.e., any operations that were disrupted by the pandemic, such as rescheduling a space science mission at NASA. Additionally, there was support for higher education, in the form of about $14 billion; however, that isn’t set aside for research and by all reports is being used by colleges and universities for administrative purposes (meaning, keeping the lights on). All that funding was directly related to responding to the pandemic.

CRA Survey on NSF CISE Departmental BPC Plans

CRA invites the academic computing community to complete a brief survey about the broadening participation in computing (BPC) plans required for proposals submitted to some programs of the NSF CISE Directorate. Specifically, we are interested in learning whether your academic department has created, or plans to create, a Departmental BPC Plan to assist faculty PIs submitting Medium and Large CISE Core Programs, Secure and Trustworthy Cyberspace, and Cyber-Physical Systems project proposals, which all require an approved BPC plan by the time of award.

The deadline for completion is 9:00 AM ET, June 5, 2020.

Education Committee Showcases Stories of Undergraduate Researchers

Since 2018, the CRA Education Committee’s “Undergraduate Research Highlights” series has been showcasing outstanding research done by undergraduate students at universities and colleges across North America. It is one of a number of CRA-E’s activities that foster and recognize talented computing researchers with the goal of increasing the research pipeline, promoting graduate education, and advocating research-based careers.

The latest article in the series, “From COMP105 to Programming Languages Research in Haskell,” highlights the work of Tufts University graduate Marilyn Sun, who collaborated with her research advisor Kathleen Fisher, a CRA board member.

CCC Announces New Council Members

CRA, in consultation with the National Science Foundation, has appointed six new members to the Computing Community Consortium Council: Kathleen Fisher, William D. Gropp, Brian LaMacchia, Melanie Moses, Helen Nissenbaum, and Holly Yanco. Beginning July 1, the new members will each serve three-year terms.

Former CRA Board Member and CRA-W Co-Chair Leah H. Jamieson Receives the IEEE James H. Mulligan, Jr. Education Medal

The Computing Research Association extends a heartfelt congratulations to former board member and CRA-W Co-Chair Leah H. Jamieson for receiving the IEEE James H. Mulligan, Jr. Education Medal to honor her “contributions to the promotion, innovation, and inclusivity of engineering education.”

CRA-WP is humbled to receive a generous contribution from Jamieson’s award as she looks to highlight “organizations that played [a] significant role in enabling and shaping the contribution” she is recognized for today. This contribution to CRA-WP programs will be used to support the success and participation of women, underrepresented minorities, and persons with disabilities in computing research and education at all levels.