ISCA - International Speech
Communication Association

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Distinguished Lecturers


(1) Professor Visar Berisha, School of Electrical Computer and Energy Engineering, Arizona State University, USA (for details, please click on his name and here for lecture information)

  • The challenges with existing approaches to clinical speech analytics
  • A new measurement model for clinical speech application
  • Creative use of deep learning when working with limited clinical data
  • Translating clinical speech analytics from the lab to the clinic

(note term extended due to COVID-19)

(1) Professor Reinhold Haeb-Umbach, Communications Engineering, Paderborn University, Paderborn, Germany (for details, please click on his name and here for lecture information, DL Report)

  • Far-field speech recognition
  • Microphone array signal processing and deep learning for speech enhancement
  • Deep generative modeling for disentangling sources of variation in speech
  • Signal processing and machine learning for acoustic sensor networks

(note term extended due to COVID-19)

(1) Professor Suzanne Boyce, Production of Language Through Speech, University of Cincinnati, USA (DL Report)

(2) Professor Hemant A. Patil, Speech Signal Processing, Dhirubhai Ambani Institute of Information and Communication Technology (DA-IICT), Gujarat, India (DL Report)

(note term extended due to COVID-19)

(1) Professor Laurent Besacier, Speech Technologies for Under Resourced Languages, University Grenoble Alpes, France

(2) Professor Mark Gales, Spoken Language Processing, Cambridge University, UK (for details, please click here for lecture information and DL Report)


(1) Professor Takayuki Arai, Professor, Department of Information and Communication Sciences, Faculty of Science and Technology, Sophia University, Japan (DL Report)

(2) Dr Daniel Hirst, Directeur de Recherche Emeritus, CNRS & Aix-Marseille University, France (DL Report)


(1) Professor Jennifer S. Cole, Linguistics, Northwestern University, USA (DL Report)

(2) Professor Laurence Devillers, Artificial Intelligence and Human-Machine Interaction, University of Paris-Sorbonne IV, LIMSI-CNRS, France


(1) Prof. Hiroya Fujisaki, Professor Emeritus, University of Tokyo, Japan (DL Report)

(2) Professor Valerie Hazan, Professor of Speech Sciences, and Head of the Department of Speech Hearing and Phonetic Sciences, University College London, UK (Interim Report)


(1) Prof. Helen Meng, Chairman & Professor, the Department of Systems Engineering and Engineering Management, The Chinese University of Hong Kong (Interim Report)

(2) Prof. Shrikanth Narayanan, Andrew J Viterbi Professor of Engineering, University of Southern California, USA (interim Report)


(1) Dr. Catherine Best, Professor and Chair in Psycholinguistic Research, the University of Western Sydney (DL Reports: Taiwan, West Indies 12)

(2) Dr. Roger Moore, Professor, University of Sheffield, UK (DL ReportsIndia, Puerto Rico and China slides)


(1) Prof. Hynek Hermansky, Johns Hopkins University, USA (DL Reports: India, Lecture Notes 1234

(2) Dr. Michael Riley, Google, USA (DL Reports: ThailandLecture Notes;  Brazil, Lecture Notes 12)


(1) Prof. Sadaoki Furui, Tokyo Institute of Technology, Japan (DL Reports: India (Jan 2013)India (Dec 2013)Thailand and South Africa)

(2) Prof. Hermann Ney, RWTH Aachen, Germany (DL Reports: Slovenia and Hong KongLecture Notes at Hong KongReport 2012)


(1) Prof. Jeff Bilmes, University of Washington, Seattle WA (DL Reports: India)(2) Prof. John Hansen, University of Texas at Dallas, Dallas TX (DL Reports: India and Argentina)


(1) Dr. Li Deng, Microsoft Research, One Microsoft Way, Redmond, WA 98052, USA (DL Reports: Taiwan 2011Xi'An 2011)

(2) Professor Thierry DUTOIT, Faculté Polytechnique de Mons, Belgium


2 Distinguished Lecturers have been selected for 2009-2010: 

(1) Professor Abeer Alwan, University of California at Los Angeles, USA: Trip report 1 - 2010
(2) Professor James R. Glass, Massachusetts Institute of Technology, USA.

Together with 1 Distinguished Lecturer selected a year ago for 2008-2009: 
(1) Professor Richard M. Stern, Carnegie Mellon University, USA, 
a total of 3 Distinguished Lecturers are available in 2009.


(2) Professor Marc Swerts, Tilburg University, the Netherlands: Trip report 1 - 2007, Trip report 2 - 2008 - Picture of trip 2- 2008

2 Distinguished Lecturers have been selected for 2007-2008:

(1) Professor Chin-Hui Lee, Georgia Institute of Technology, USA: Trip report 1 - 2007, Trip report 2 - 2008


Calls for nominations are published on the ISCA homepage and in ISCApad, typically in December. All ISCA members may nominate candidates to be considered by the DL Selection Committee. For details on the nomination and selection procedure please refer to the program details (part B) at the bottom of this page.

Distinguished Lecturer Selection Committee

Chair: Abeer Alwan, UCLA, USA (2020-2022) 

  • Catherine Best, The University of Western Sydney, Australia (2020-2022)
  • Jeff Bilmes, University of Washington, USA (2020-2022)
  • Valerie Hazan, UCL, UK (2020-2022)
  • Helen Meng, Chinese Univ. of HK, China (2020-2022)
  • Michael Riley, Google, USA (2020-2022)
  • Marc Swerts, Tilburg University, Netherland (2020-2022)
  • Iona Gessinger, Saarland University, Germany (Representative of SAC, 2020-2022)

Past Distinguished Lecturer Selection Committees

Chair: Roger Moore, University of Sheffield (2017-2019)

  • Nestor Becerra Yoma (2014-2016,2017-2019) Department of Electrical Engineering, University of Chile, Chile 
  • Anne Cutler (2014-2016,2017-2019), The MARCS Institute, University of Western Sydney
  • Maxine Eskenazi (2015-2017), Carnegie Melon University, USA
  • John Hansen(2014-2016,2017-2019), University of Texas - Dallas, USA
  • Chiu-yu Tseng(2017-2019), Institute of Linguistics, Academia Sinica, Taiwan
  • Frédéric Bimbot, IRISA, France (2017-2019),
  • Angel Mario Castro, University of Oldenburg, Germany,  (Student Representative, 2017-2019)

Chair: Isabel Trancoso, University of Lisbon, Portugal (2014-2016)

  • Anne Cutler, The MARCS Institute, University of Western Sydney, Australia (2014-2016)
  • Maxine Eskenazi, Carnegie Melon University, USA (2015-2017)
  • John Hansen, The University of Dallas, USA (2014-2016)
  • Lin-shan Lee, National Taiwan University, Taipei (2012-2014, 2014-2016)
  • Mari Ostendorf, University of Washington, USA (2012-2014, 2014-2016)
  • Nestor Becerra Yoma, Department of Electrical Engineering, University of Chile, Chile (2014-2016)
  • Catharine Oertel, KTH (Student Representative, 2012-2014, 2014-2016)

Commitments of the Lecturers

Nominated lecturers are contacted by the Committee and asked if they can commit to at least two Lecture Tours in a two-year term, including possible travel to regions specially identified as under-represented in ISCA programs (e.g., Eastern Europe, Africa, West/South/South-East Asia, and South/Latin America. DL tours to other ISCA under-represented regions will be reviewed and approved by ISCA Distinguished Lecturer Selection Committee). They may also be asked to participate in other events, such as short courses in summer or winter schools. All such activities will be arranged to be mutually interesting and convenient for hosts and lecturers. They can be provided online in an interactive mode, probably with one-to-one research discussion after the lecture. After completing the commitment, lecturers will be provided with a waiver for the registration fee of the next INTERSPEECH conference.

Distinguished Lecturers Tours

Distinguished Lecturers Tours are arranged by ISCA upon invitation only. Local hosts will be responsible for making and funding local arrangements including accommodation and meals. ISCA will pay for travel costs. A Distinguished Lecturer Tour typically consists of three lectures preferably in at least two different locations in the host region.

ISCA Distinguished Lecturers Program Details

Commitment of the Lecturers

An ISCA Distinguished Lecturer must commit to traveling to regions defined by the ISCA Board to give lectures, which may be provided online in an interactive mode, probably with one-to-one research discussion after the lectures.. This commitment should include a minimum of two lecture tours in a 2 year period, assuming that ISCA can arrange these tours. Being an ISCA Distinguished Lecturer thus represents a commitment to service in addition to the recognition of academic achievement. After completing the commitment, lecturers are provided with a waiver for the registration fee of the next INTERSPEECH conference.

Selection Procedures for Distinguished Lecturers

The Chair of the Distinguished Lecturers Committee is appointed by the ISCA Board. The Committee includes 5 to 7 members, at least 2 of whom are not ISCA Board members. Members of the Committee are appointed by the ISCA President in consultation with the chair and confirmed by the ISCA Board. The term of each Committee member is 3 years.

All ISCA members may nominate candidates to be considered by the DL Committee. The Committee votes on these nominees and those receiving the most votes (exceeding a 2/3 majority of the Committee), within a maximum number of Distinguished Lecturers set by the ISCA Board, are selected as DLs for a two-year term. Calls for nominations are published in the ISCA pad and posted on the ISCA website. Each nomination should include a short biography, a list of selected publications, a CV (resume), reasons for nomination, a pointer to the nominee's website if possible, as well as the topic areas on which the nominee might be invited to lecture; this nominating document should not exceed two pages plus a CV. Here is a template Word file for the nominating document. Please note that the nominator must ensure the candidate is willing to serve if elected. Nominations from previous years will be only considered if updated. Self nominations must include a letter of support from an ISCA Fellow or Board Member. The nominating document may also include explicit agreement from the nominee that his (or her) lectures can be recorded to be used in ISCA's education program, if elected. Nomination deadlines and voting process details are decided by the DL Committee. The names of the Lecturers selected by the Committee shall be submitted to the ISCA Board for approval. Once this approval has been obtained, the Committee Chair shall contact the Lecturers to ask them if they can commit to the conditions specified in (A). Those who agree shall be announced as ISCA Distinguished Lecturers, with a term of 2 years. 

Organization of Distinguished Lecturers Tours

  • The Distinguished Lecturers Tours are organized by the Geographical Outreach Committee with support from the ISCA administrator. The local hosts should be responsible for making and funding all local arrangements, including accommodation and meals (at least at minimum level). ISCA will pay travel costs at the economy level. When necessary, ISCA will supplement the reimbursement from the local hosts up to normal and customary costs to ensure the comfort of the Lecturer while traveling.

  • The local hosts should make every effort to publicize the lectures. They may ask for support from ISCA to cover the costs for such promotional activities when needed (e.g. renting a bus to bring students to the lectures). Whenever possible the local hosts should try to audio/video record the lectures (with the agreement of the lecturer). Such material will be used together with the lecturer's ppt files for ISCA's education program. Hosts may also ask for support from ISCA to cover the costs for recording when needed.
  • A Distinguished Lecturer Tour shall be organized when at least three lectures, preferably in at least 2 different cities in the regions defined by the Board, can be arranged. Any additional travel arrangements shall be the responsibility of the Distinguished Lecturer. DLs may also be invited to participate in short training schools where their expertise is appropriate.
  • The list of Distinguished Lecturers is made public and advertised to the regions defined by the Board, together with brief introductory information and possible topics/titles of lectures.
  • The Board can always ask any ISCA member to give lectures furthering ISCA interests outside of the Distinguished Lecturers Program.

Board Responsibilities

  1. The chair of the Geographical Outreach Committee is the Board Member responsible for this program.
  2. The chair of the Distinguished Lecturers Committee, the chair of the Geographical Outreach Committee and the ISCA Treasurer form a task force overseeing this program, including all operating details such as budget requirements, travel cost estimation, upper bound of number of Distinguished Lecturers selected each year, and the operating schedule for the program each year. This task force is coordinated by the chair of Geographical Outreach Committee.

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