Arturo Azcorra, founding director of IMDEA Networks and professor in the Department of Telematics Engineering at the University Carlos III of Madrid (UC3M), has been elevated to the rank of IEEE Fellow in the “Technical Leader” category, for the scientific and industrial impact of his research contributions to the development of 5G technology. In this way, he becomes the first scientist in Spain to be designated IEEE Fellow in the “Technical Leader” category.
The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) is the most important scientific society in the world in the field of information and communications technologies. Fewer than one in a thousand IEEE scientists have been elevated to the rank of IEEE Fellow in the Technical Leader category, which is a clear indication of the great distinction that this designation represents. In fact, the process to be named an IEEE Fellow is extremely competitive and safeguarded, and requires eight months of activity to complete. First, an IEEE Fellow nominator generates the nomination with an extensive merit report. Then, five IEEE Fellows (“referees”) rate the merits of the nomination at four levels. In the case of the “Technical Leader” category, three reference letters from prominent scientists (usually from large companies and called “endorsers”) are also required to endorse the worldwide industrial impact of the candidate’s scientific contributions.
Arturo Azcorra (currently Director General of Telecommunications and Organization of Audiovisual Communication Services of the Ministry of Economic Affairs and Digital Transformation) receives this distinction one year after he was awarded the prestigious international “Reginald Fessenden Award” and four years after being appointed academician of the European Academy of Sciences (“Academia Europaea”). This academy has 73 Nobel laureates among its members and brings together leading European scientists from all fields. Specifically, Azcorra was appointed academician in the field of Exact Sciences, in the computer science section, which has 14 other Spanish academicians among which we can highlight Mateo Valero, Francisco Tirado, or Manuel Hermenegildo.
Being elevated to IEEE Fellow as “Technical Leader” is therefore a new international recognition to the scientific career of Professor Azcorra, and confirms him as one of the main developers of the European 5G technology. Throughout the European 5GPPP, he was one of only two academic members of the Partnership Board, a joint committee between the European Commission, industry, and academia that has made the European 5G technology a reality.
He has also made direct contributions to 5G technology with his research projects (as project coordinator for 5G-Crosshaul and 5G-TRANSFORMER). His scientific contributions have been adopted in 5G standards and in commercial products (5G midhaul, the eCPRI standard for 5G, architecture for the 5G control plane based on NFV/SDN, and the 5G emergency system with augmented reality developed for SAMUR). Along with David del Val (CEO of Telefonica R&D), he co-founded the 5TONIC research laboratory which has placed Spain at the forefront of Europe in 5G technology development. The laboratory has made important contributions such as swarm intelligence to control AGV fleets from the network edge.
About Professor Azcorra’s nomination
Professor Azcorra’s nominator was the prestigious American scientist Dr. Edward Knightly, from Rice University (USA), one of the world’s leading experts on wireless networks. His referees were international scientists Dr. Tommaso Melodia (Northeastern University, USA), Dr. Gustavo de Veciana (University of Texas at Austin, USA), Dr. Ralf Steinmetz (Technical University Darmstadt, Germany), Dr. Marco Ajmone-Marsan (Politecnico di Torino, Italy) and Dr. Carla-Fabiana Chiasserini (Politecnico di Torino, Italy). His endorsers have been Dr. Jim Kurose (from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, and formerly scientific advisor to the President of the United States), Dr. Gonzalo Camarillo (scientist at Ericsson Finland and co-inventor of Internet telephony), and Dr. Heiner Stüttgen (president of the NEC research laboratory in Germany, and formerly a leading researcher at IBM).