Distinguished Lecturers 2019


We are pleased to announce the Distinguished Lecturers for 2019-2020:

  1. Professor Laurent Besacier, Speech Technologies for Under Resourced Languages, University Grenoble Alpes, France
  2. Professor Mark Gales, Spoken Language Processing, Cambridge University, UK

The lecturers are available for lecture tours upon request from host institutions. For possible talk topics and information on the DL programme look at the ISCA Distinguished Lecturers webpage.

10th Christian Benoît Award


The Christian Benoît Award is given biannually to a promising young scientist in the domain of SPEECH COMMUNICATION to further their career in the field. We are pleased to announce the winner of the 10th Christian Benoît Award is Sankar Mukherjee, Center for Translational Neurophysiology of Speech and Communication (CTNSC)Istituto Italiano di Tecnologia, Ferrara, Italy. They will be carrying out a research project on "Neuro-behavioral Aware Conversational Agent".

The jury for the Award were the following:

  1. Gérard Bailly, chair
  2. Torbjørn Karl Svendsen, chair of ISCA awards
  3. Phil Green, ISCA representative
  4. Lori Lamel, ISCA representative
  5. Véronique Delvaux, AFCP representative
  6. Martine Adda-Decker, AFCP representative
  7. Marcin Włodarczak, winner of the 9th Christian Benoît award
  8. Mathilde Fort, winner of the 8th Christian Benoît award
  9. Samer Al Moubayed, winner of the 7th Christian Benoît award

More information about the award can be found here.

Distinguished Lecturers

ISCA Distinguished Lecturers Program

The Distinguished Leturers programme funds prominent  scientists to present their work in parts of the world where there is not an established Speech Communication community.

(A) Commitment of the Lecturers

An ISCA Distinguished Lecturer must commit to traveling to regions defined by the ISCA Board to give lectures,  probably with discussion after the talk.. This commitment should include a minimum of two lecture tours in a 2 year period, assuming that ISCA can arrange these tours. Lectures should be given live wherever possible. 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.

Download the Distinguished Lecture Presentation (MS Powerpoint) Template.

(B) Selection Procedures for Distinguished Lecturers

The Chair of the Distinguished Lecturers Committee is appointed by the ISCA Board. The Committee comprises 3 to 5 members, at least 2 of whom are not ISCA Board members. Members of the Committee are chosen by the DL committee and appointed by the ISCA President. DL committee members serve for 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.

(C) Organization of Distinguished Lecturers Tours

1. 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.

2. 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.

3. 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.

4. 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.

5. The Board may also ask any ISCA member to give lectures furthering ISCA interests outside of the Distinguished Lecturers Program.

(D) Board Responsibilities

1. An ISCA Board Member will be appointed to be responsible for the DL program.

2. The chair of the Distinguished Lecturers Committee, the appointed board member and the ISCA Treasurer form a task force overseeing the 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 board member.

(E) Nominations

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.

ISCA Distinguished Lecturers for 2023-2024

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


ISCA Distinguished Lecturers for 2021-2023

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



Distinguished Lecturer Selection Committee 2022

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)


Distinguished Lecturers Candidates 2017


We are pleased to announce the Distinguished Lecturers for 2017-2018:

  1. Prof. Hiroya Fujisaki, Professor Emeritus, University of Tokyo, Japan
  2. Professor Valerie Hazan, Professor of Speech Sciences, and Head of the Department of Speech Hearing and Phonetic Sciences, University College London, UK

The lecturers are available for lecture tours upon request from host institutions. For possible talk topics look at the list.