ISCA - International Speech
Communication Association

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Distinguished Lecturers

The Distinguished Lecturer (DL) programme is an Outreach activity which funds ISCA scientists to undertake lecture tours to parts of the world where our research field is not well represented. The intention is to make one DL appointment per year, and for that appointment to extend over 2 years, so that 2 DLs are active at any time.

 At the time of writing, the regions covered by the Program are

  •  Eastern Europe
  • Africa
  • West/South/South-East Asia
  • South/Latin America

This list is subject to review.


Commitments of the Lecturers

Nominated lecturers must commit to at least two Lecture Tours in their two-year term 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 a hybrid interactive mode, probably with one-to-one research discussion after the lecture. After completing the commitment, lecturers must write a report and will be provided with a waiver for the registration fee of the next Interspeech conference.

Distinguished Lecturer Tours

A Distinguished Lecturer Tour typically consists of three lectures preferably in at least two different locations in the host region.  ISCA pays for the DL’s travel to these locations but local hosts will be responsible for making and funding local arrangements including accommodation and meals.

There is a powerpoint template for DL lectures: download Presentation (MS Powerpoint) Template

Appointing Distinguished Lecturers

·         Any member of ISCA except ISCA board members may stand for the post of DL

·         A member of the ISCA board is charged with the organisation of the DL appointment process with support from the ISCA Secretariat.

·         Nominations for DL are called for in November with a December deadline. There may be a suggested limit to fund lecture tours.

·         Nominations must be accompanied by 2 references from senior members of the ISCA community such as Fellows or Board Members. There is a nomination form and a reference form

·         Completed DL applications are examined by a panel of 3 previous DLs, who decide which applications can be recommended to the ISCA Board.

·         Candidates on this short list are then asked to submit a plan for their lecture tours to the ISCA board. The plan should cover

o   abstracts of at least 3 talks the DL will present

o   the countries and institutions to be visited

o   the proposed timing for the tours

o   an estimate of travel costs

·         Because of the financial commitment for a DL, the ISCA board (or a panel drawn from it) then decides which DL application to support. The board may ask for modifications to the plan.

·         The DL should not contact the local hosts before the plan is approved.

 Previous 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

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