Arturo Azcorra, recipient of the Reginald Fessenden Award
The director of the IMDEA Networks Institute has been recognised for his contribution to the development of 5G technology
19 November 2020
Arturo Azcorra, Director of IMDEA Networks Institute, Professor of Telematics Engineering at Carlos III University of Madrid and Vice-President of 5TONIC, has received the prestigious Reginald Fessenden Award for his contributions to the development of 5G technology. Granted by the ACM-MSWIM International Conference, the award recognises scientific contributions in the fields of wireless communications, networking and mobile systems.
Established in 2014 and named after the Canadian pioneer of radio broadcasting, previous recipients have included scientists such as Ian Akyildiz (a landmark figure in the field of data networks), Mario Gerla and Jean-Pierre Hubaux. Prof. Azcorra is one of the (if not the sole) main developers of European 5G technology (in 2013, he was elected the Chairperson of the Expert Advisory Board of the European Technology Platform “Networld 2020”, with votes cast by some thousand public and private R&D organisations). Within this context, one of his responsibilities was to draft the 5G research guidelines for all Europe, which are listed in the 2016 document “Strategic Research and Innovation Agenda” (SRIA).
Prof. Azcorra is also one of the only two academic members of the 5GPPP Partnership Board, a joint committee constituted by the European Commission, the industrial sector, and academic organisations, and the body responsible for making 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.
His resume showcases his manifold functions as designer, founder and long-time director of the REDIMadrid regional network for research. He is also the founder and current director of the international research institute IMDEA Networks (ranked fourth in Europe in the fields of ‘Mobile Computing’ and ‘Measurement & perf. Analysis’ according to CS rankings). He was the founder and first President of the Telematics Association “ATEL”. He has been a guest researcher at UC Berkeley and MIT, as well as the Director General of CDTI (where he headed industrial research in Spain, primarily in the areas of Engineering). He is a member of the European Science Academy “Academia Europaea”, which brings together the most distinguished scientists in Europe, including 70 Nobel Prize winners. He has been the sole Spanish member of the Steering Committee of the IEEE INFOCOM conference (the most prestigious conference on Computer Communications).
With more than 150 publications and 6 patents to his name, his scientific contributions have been incorporated into standards or have paved the way for commercial products such as the residential gateway (installed in millions of homes) or the process to generate IPv4 addresses. He has served as the coordinator or head researcher in more than 30 projects, mostly European, as well as in 10 company projects. He has received more than 15 million euros in competitive funding to finance his research, not counting the 23 million euros he oversaw as Director of IMDEA Networks.