Vivek Goyal Named a 2024 Guggenheim Fellow

The award recognizes Goyal’s groundbreaking work in computational imaging, and many contributions to the fields of signal processing and information science

By Maureen Stanton

Vivek K Goyal, a Boston University engineering professor, author, and inventor, has been named a 2024 Guggenheim Fellow. Now in its 99th year, Guggenheim Fellowships are conferred to individuals who have “demonstrated exceptional capacity for productive scholarship or exceptional creative ability in the arts and exhibit great promise for future endeavors.” The award provides honorees with a monetary stipend to pursue projects lasting six to 12 months under the “freest possible conditions.”

Goyal is currently a Professor and Associate Chair of Doctoral Programs for the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at BU, and faculty affiliate of the Hariri Institute for Computing, and the Center for Information & Systems Engineering (CISE). He specializes in signal processing, with a recent emphasis on computational imaging, especially the exploitation of efficient information representations and the development of new imaging modalities that are dependent on computation.  

Goyal will use his fellowship to pursue the development of computational methods for secondary electron imaging, such as with scanning electron microscopes and helium ion microscopes. “Even though this is an award to me as an individual, it reflects decades of work alongside students and collaborators,” Goyal said. “My scholarly and creative output is due to a culture of teamwork and mutual support.”

Goyal is broadly recognized for his many contributions in the fields of signal processing and information science, from his highly-cited paper “Multiple description coding: Compression meets the network to his 2014 paper published in Science in which he establishes the field of depth imaging from extremely low light levels—as little as one photon detected per pixel— to continuing to advance new knowledge and innovations in microscopy, non-line-of-sight imaging, and other lidar and thermal sensing and ranging technologies for autonomous vehicles.

Goyal has published more than 200 papers and co-authored a textbook (Foundations of Signal Processing, Cambridge University Press 2014). He is the recipient of several awards, including the 2002 IEEE Signal Processing Society (SPS) Magazine Award,  2017 IEEE SPS Best Paper Award, 2019 IEEE SPS Best Paper Award, 2021 IEEE SPS Outstanding Editorial Board Member, and the Best Paper Award of the 2014 IEEE International Conference on Image Processing. Additionally, work he supervised has received seven student best paper or poster awards,  eight thesis awards, including the 2021 IEEE SPS Best PhD Dissertation Award, and a CRA Outstanding Undergraduate Research Award Honorable Mention. Dr. Goyal is also a Fellow of the AAAS, IEEE, and Optica. U.S. patents have been issued for 19 of Goyal’s inventions.[

Learn more about Goyal’s work here.

About the Guggenheim Foundation

“Humanity faces some profound existential challenges,” said Edward Hirsch, president of the John Simon Guggenheim Memorial Foundation in the foundation’s announcement. “The Guggenheim Fellowship is a life-changing recognition. It’s a celebrated investment into the lives and careers of distinguished artists, scholars, scientists, writers, and other cultural visionaries who are meeting these challenges head-on and generating new possibilities and pathways across the broader culture as they do so.”

Since its establishment by US Senator Simon and Olga Guggenheim in 1925, the Foundation has granted over $400 million in Fellowships to more than 19,000 individuals, among whom are more than 125 Nobel laureates, members of all the national academies, winners of the Pulitzer Prize, Fields Medal, Turing Award, Bancroft Prize, National Book Award, and other internationally recognized honors.

The full list of the 2024 Guggenheim fellowship recipients can be found here.