Jure Leskovec Became a Professor of the Stanford University
Stanford, 24 August. A Slovenian scientist Jure Leskovec became a professor of computer science at the prestigious American Stanford University, where he has been working as an assistant professor since 2009. The fact that a young scientist becomes a professor is the most common practice in the United States. For example, 60% of Stanford professors eventually become professors, Jure tells in his interview with the STA.
According to Jure Leskovec, his past status of a young assistant professor usually lasts for six years. After this period, the time to choose comes. “At this point, we either become professors, or go to work in another university,” Leskovec explains, “I think that such system is good, because this way a scientist knows exactly what awaits for him and what will be the result of his work.”
Jure Leskovec does not consider obtaining the title of professor in one of the world’s best universities as the apogee of his career, but “… just as another step in his life’s journey.” He notes that it is the result of his long-term hard work, the fruits of which have made themselves felt slowly but surely. Regarding his election, Jure notes that he was not particularly surprised, and he was not too worried about what the outcome would be.
In the procedure of electing professors, there is no pre-established criteria. According to Leskovec, letters of recommendation as well as the assessment of students and the former students’ letters are the main factors that may influence the final decision.
When making their decision, the faculty members compiled a list of four Jure Leskovec’s peers, who had already become Stanford professors or professors of other similar universities and who were working on similar scientific problems. Then, a group of 15 scientists prepared evaluations — letters of recommendation for Jure Leskovec and his peers, while they were ranked taking into account the relevance and importance of scientific advances.
The subject of his scientific research is the major social and information networks as well as social media. He develops statistical models describing and predicting the behaviour of people as well as the dissemination of data within the largest social networks, such as Facebook and Twitter.
Jure Leskovec obtained Bachelor’s degree in 2004 at the Faculty of Computer Science and Informatics of the University of Ljubljana. He continued his studies in the United States, where he received his PhD degree at the University of Carnegie Mellon, and afterwards passed his internship at the Cornell University. The scientist is working in research and education areas with the Jozef Stefan Institute and with the Faculty of Computer Science and Informatics of the University of Ljubljana.