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Jean Yang

Assistant Professor
Computer Science Department
Carnegie Mellon University

jyang2 [at] cs [dot] cmu [dot] edu
Curriculum Vitae

Jean Yang

I am an Assistant Professor in the Computer Science Department at Carnegie Mellon University, joining fall 2016. I am a member of the Principles of Programming group and affiliated with the Pure and Applied Logic program. I also have an affiliate appointment in CMU's Computational Biology Department.

I received my PhD from MIT in 2015 and my bachelor's degree from Harvard in 2008. During the 2015-2016 academic year I am visiting the Fontana Lab at Harvard Medical School.

Along with new faculty members Matt Fredrikson and Jan Hoffmann, I am actively looking for PhD students. You may read more about my research plans here.

Research Mission

More and more people are programming: not only those with traditional Computer Science backgrounds, but also physical scientists, journalists, and more. We have an unprecedented opportunity to shape how people reason about software--and the systems that people do not yet call software. The goal of my research is to make provable guarantees ubiquitous. I am interested in designing programming models, language implementation strategies, and programming tools to make it easier for people to create the software they intended. Application domains of interest include security, privacy, and biological modeling.

Outreach Mission

Public understanding and consumption determine the impact of research. Because of this, I am interested in improving science communication and facilitating commercialization of technical ideas. From 2013-2015 I co-directed NeuWrite Boston, a working group of scientists and science writers. To narrow the gap between academia and industry, I co-founded the Cybersecurity Factory, an accelerator for security startups.


I presented our paper "Precise, Dynamic Information Flow for Database-Backed Applications" at PLDI 2016. Slides here in pptx and pdf!
I gave the high school commencement speech at my alma mater, The Ellis School. You may read the text here.
I will be teaching 15-819, Advanced Topics in Programming Languages: Domain-Specific Languages, fall 2016.
I spoke at the Philly Emerging Technology for the Enterprise Conference about securing software by construction. Slides here!
I am co-chairing the POPL 2017 Artifact Evaluation Committee with Stephen Chong.
Frank Wang and I are running our accelerator Cybersecurity Factory, which we piloted last year, again this summer in Cambridge. Here we are in BostInno, The Boston Globe, Fortune, and Wired.

Community Activities

Cool Women Who Code
A friend reading my chapter of Cool Women Who Code.

Technology is a powerful social tool. Astra Taylor writes that "programmers and the corporate officers who employ them are the new urban planners, shaping the virtual frontier into the spaces we occupy." Everyone, regardless of their background, should have the opportunity to contribute to shaping this frontier.

Towards this, I started Graduate Women at MIT during my PhD and am generally interested in encouraging more women and underrepresented groups to pursue technology as a career. I feel honored to have a chapter about me in Andi Diehn's Cool Women Who Code book to encourage young girls to learn to code.

Also interested in creating more positive, supportive workplace environments, I started the Positivity@MIT project.


It is now fashionable to have such a section on one's website.

© Jean Yang 2015. Last updated June 20, 2016.