Biography:Gul Agha (computer scientist)

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Short description: American computer scientist

Gul Agha
Sindh, Pakistan
Alma materCalifornia Institute of Technology
University of Michigan
Known forActor Model, Statistical Model Checking, Actor Programming Languages
Spouse(s)Jennifer S. Cole
AwardsFellow of the IEEE, Fellow of the ACM
Scientific career
FieldsComputer science
InstitutionsUniversity of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
ThesisActors: A Model of Concurrent Computing in Distributed Systems (1985)
Doctoral advisorJohn Holland and Carl Hewitt

Gul Agha (گُل آغا) is a professor of computer science at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, and director of the Open Systems Laboratory. He is known for his work on the actor model of concurrent computation,[1] and was also Editor-in-Chief of ACM Computing Surveys from 1999 to 2007.[2] Agha was born and completed his early schooling in Sindh, Pakistan . Agha completed his B.S. with honors at the California Institute of Technology in the year 1977.[3] He received his Ph.D. in Computer and Communication Science from the University of Michigan in 1986 under the supervision of John Holland. However, much of his doctoral research was carried out in Carl Hewitt's Message-Passing Semantics Group at Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).[4][5][6] Agha's dissertation was published by the MIT Press as Actors: a model of concurrent computation in distributed systems, a book which, according to the ACM Guide to Computing Literature, has been cited over 3000 times.[7]


Agha enjoys Blues music and is a vegan and a pacifist.[3] He has three daughters, including filmmaker Sindha Agha, and lives with his wife Jennifer S. Cole in Illinois.


Agha became a Fellow of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) in 2002.[8] He is also a Golden Core Member of the IEEE Computer Society, and a recipient of the IEEE Computer Society Meritorious Service Award, and was an International Lecturer for the ACM from 1992 to 1997.[4] Agha was elected as an ACM Fellow in 2018 for "research in concurrent programming and formal methods, specifically the Actor Model".[9]

See also

  • Agent-based modeling
  • SALSA (programming language)


  1. Lee, Edward (September 2000). "What's Ahead for Embedded Software?". IEEE Computer 33 (7): 18–26. doi:10.1109/2.868693. Retrieved 2008-01-01. "Gul Agha of the University of Illinois describes actors, which extend objects to concurrent computation.". 
  2. Agha, Gul (January 2008). "Computing in Pervasive Cyberspace". Communications of the ACM 51 (1): 68–70. doi:10.1145/1327452.1327484. 
  3. 3.0 3.1 Dunya, S. Gul Agha: The Talented Computer Scientist of Sindh. Feb 26, 2016. Sindhi Dunya: Voice of Sindh Culture. Accessed September 20, 2017.
  4. 4.0 4.1 "Gul Agha". Faculty Directory, Department of Computer Science, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Retrieved 2007-12-30. 
  5. Gul Agha (1986). Actors: A Model of Concurrent Computation in Distributed Systems. Doctoral Dissertation. MIT Press. 
  6. *Carl Hewitt and Gul Agha. Guarded Horn clause languages: are they deductive and Logical? International Conference on Fifth Generation Computer Systems, Ohmsha 1988. Tokyo. Also in Artificial Intelligence at MIT, Vol. 2. MIT Press 1991.
  7. ACM (1986). Actors: a model of concurrent computation in distributed systems. MIT Press. ISBN 9780262010924. Retrieved 2009-01-04. 
  8. IEEE. "Fellow Class of 2002". Retrieved 2007-12-30. 
  9. 2018 ACM Fellows Honored for Pivotal Achievements that Underpin the Digital Age, Association for Computing Machinery, December 5, 2018, 

External links