Philipp Koehn, professor of computer science, is recognized worldwide for his leading research in and applications for developing and understanding data-driven methods to solve long-standing, real-world challenges of machine translation and machine learning.
Today’s deluge of digital information is both a product of and engine for nearly every function of modern society. Koehn’s area of renowned expertise—machine translation or translating text from one human language to another by a computer—is vital to addressing the ever-expanding need for natural language processing and machine learning.
He is affiliated with the Whiting School’s Center for Language and META AI Research (Facebook). He previously held the position of professor and chair of machine translation, School of Informatics. He is the author of the field’s seminal textbooks on the subject, Neural Machine Translation (Cambridge University Press, 2020) and Statistical Machine Translation (Cambridge University Press, 2009). Koehn also holds or co-holds five patents for machine translation.
The 2015 winner of the Award of Honor, International Association for Machine Translation, Koehn was one of three finalists for the 2013 European Inventor Award. At the 2011 META NET, the conference for the Multilingual Europe Technology Alliance, Koehn won the META first prize for Moses, his open-source toolkit for statistical machine translation. His additional contributions to the field through refereed journals, panels, presentations, and web tutorials are extensive. Koehn, who has appeared on CNN and other media outlets, has given numerous invited talks.
Koehn serves on the editorial boards for multiple journals, among them: Artificial Intelligence Review; Computation, Corpora, Cognition, and ACM Transactions on Asian and Low-Resource Language Information Processing. Koehn is a noted leader within the Association for Computational Linguistics (ACL). He was founding president of the ACL Special Interest Group on Machine Translation and former president of the ACL Special Interest Group on Linguistic Data and Corpus-Based Approaches to natural language processing. His ACL leadership includes co-chairing the series of ACL workshops and conferences on Machine Translation since 2005 and chairing several ACL workshops on Statistical Machine Translation. In addition, Koehn has chaired the Machine Translation Marathon and co-chaired the Machine Translation Marathon in the Americas.
He received a master’s in computer science (1994) from the University of Tennessee, a diplom, computer science from the Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg (1997), and a doctorate in computer science from the University of Southern California (2003).