Advancing Security and Communication Technology

August 19, 2013—Research Professor of Computer Science Eric Burger recently received the Professional Achievement for Individuals Award from the American unit of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE-USA).

Burger received the award for his “sustained and collaborative support of communications technology policy,” according to the IEEE, the world’s largest professional association for the advancement of technology. “This award is such an honor for me because I love to teach, and the practical application of my research and teaching is important to me,” Burger said.

In addition to his research and teaching, Burger is the founder and director of the Georgetown Center for Secure Communications. He is also the director of the university’s new Security and Software Engineering Research Center (S2ERC). The new center grew out of the university’s Software Engineering Research Center, which began in 1976. As the center began to focus more on cyber threats and other security and technology issues, Burger established S2ERC with a planning grant from the National Science Foundation.

“The [center] will attract high-energy, creative researchers to work with non-academic practitioners in a wide range of industries and government sites, who provide guidance, feedback, and funding,” he said. “Our researchers gain access to real-world data and experienced practitioners who can guide them, while affiliate companies gain immediate access to innovative research.”

The center focuses on social, policy, and corporate governance issues related to secure communications, as well as technologies to support network provenance, multilevel secure communications, network emulation, and trust.

Georgetown’s S2ERC is part of the National Science Foundation’s Industry/University Cooperative Research Center, a network for 14 universities that study areas of critical technology. S2ERC is the only center, however, devoted to security and software engineering.

“This is exactly the kind of center that would benefit a student interested in the cross-section of practical, applied policy, and in-depth research,” Burger continued.

Burger’s work at S2ERC and the Georgetown Center for Secure Communications is an example of his commitment to supporting communication technology. “My work on communication technology policy was a way to combine my research and teaching on cyber security and information sharing with practical policy solutions,” Burger said. “And I’m honored that the IEEE recognized my work.”