Profile of Sergio Verdu

2012 Viterbi Lecture

Ming Hsieh Department of Electrical Engineering


“What is Information Theory?”


Sergio Verdú
Eugene Higgins Professor of Electrical Engineering
Princeton University



This wide-audience talk will address the history of Claude Shannon’s theory on the fundamental limits of data compression and data transmission through noisy channels. We will review the impact of information theory on the design of various information technologies, as well as its intersections with other fields. We will also discuss the evolving perception of information theory since its inception in 1948 among the wider scientific community.


Sergio Verdú was the Eugene Higgins Professor of Electrical Engineering at Princeton University. A member of the National Academy of Engineering, he is the recipient of the 2007 Claude E. Shannon Award, and the 2008 IEEE Richard W. Hamming Medal. He received the 2000 Frederick E. Terman Award from the American Society for Engineering Education, and a Doctorate Honoris Causa from the Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya. In 1998, Cambridge University Press published his book Multiuser Detection. His papers have received several awards, including the 1992 IEEE Donald Fink Paper Award, the Information Theory Outstanding Paper Award in both 1998 and 2012, an IEEE Information Theory Golden Jubilee Paper Award, the 2002 Leonard G. Abraham Prize Award in the field of Communications Systems, the 2007 IEEE Joint Communications/Information Theory Paper Award, and the 2009 Stephen O. Rice Prize from the IEEE Communications Society. He served as President of the IEEE Information Theory Society in 1997, and is currently Editor-in-Chief of Foundations and Trends in Communications and Information Theory.


Published on June 26th, 2017

Last updated on August 2nd, 2023