Headshot of Eric Nalisnick on Decker Quad in spring.
Eric Nalisnick

Eric Nalisnick, an assistant professor of computer science at the Johns Hopkins University, has been named a recipient of Google Research’s Award for Inclusion Research for his proposal, “Adaptive, Efficient Collection of Sign Language Data.”

The Award for Inclusion Research Program recognizes and supports academic research in computing and technology that addresses the needs of historically marginalized groups globally. Launched in 2020, the program is an ongoing effort to support innovative research and professors working to create positive societal impact.

This award will support Nalisnick’s research on using active learning to address the scarcity of sign language data. He proposes using active learning—a training process that allows predictive models to choose the very data points from which they will learn—to reduce the workload placed on native signers to provide high-quality data annotations with the hope of enabling the collection of larger, more diverse sign language datasets. The research will be conducted in collaboration with Floris Roelofsen from the University of Amsterdam.