As corporate vice president and head of Microsoft Research, Peter Lee oversees operations for an organization comprising more than 1,100 scientists and engineers across 13 labs worldwide. Under Peter's leadership, Microsoft Research conducts both basic and applied research across disciplines that include algorithms and theory, human-computer interaction, machine learning, multimedia and graphics, search, security, social computing, and systems, architecture, mobility, and networking. Microsoft Research collaborates with the world's foremost researchers in academia, industry, and government on initiatives to advance the state of the art across the breadth of computing and to help ensure the future of Microsoft's products.
Prior to joining Microsoft, Peter held key positions in both government and academia. His most recent position was at the Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA), where he founded and directed a major technology office that supported research in computing and related areas in the social and physical sciences. One of the highlights of his work at DARPA was the DARPA Network Challenge, which mobilized millions of people worldwide in a hunt for red weather balloons - a unique experiment in social media and open innovation that fundamentally altered the thinking throughout the Department of Defense on the power of social networks.
Before DARPA, Peter served as head of Carnegie Mellon University's nationally top-ranked Computer Science department. He also served as the university's vice provost for research. At CMU, he led research in software reliability, program analysis, security, and language design. He is well-known for his co-development of proof-carrying code techniques for enhanced software security and has tackled problems as diverse as programming for large-scale modular robotics systems and shape analysis for C programs.
Peter is a Fellow of the Association for Computing Machinery and serves the research community at the national level, including policy contributions to the President's Council of Advisors on Science and Technology and membership on both the National Research Council's Computer Science and Telecommunications board and the advisory council of the Computer and Information Science and Engineering Directorate of the National Science Foundation. He was formerly the chair of the Computing Research Association and has testified before both the US House Science and Technology Committee and the US Senate Commerce Committee.
Peter holds a Ph.D. in Computer and Communication Sciences and bachelor's degrees in Mathematics and Computer Sciences from the University of Michigan at Ann Arbor.