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Professor Alan Smeaton is one of the world’s leading experts in the field of Multimedia Information Retrieval. He has contributed extensively to developing the theory and practice of information retrieval in the exceptionally important domain of ‘lifelogging’. This field focuses on storing and managing all of the information an individual encounters in day-to-day life and providing effective access to it.

Professor Smeaton’s goal is to provide efficient and effective access to lifelogs, augmenting our ability to recall persons, places, facts, or any other information that we have encountered. This study of human behaviour is of great social and scientific interest, and improvements to enhance our individual and collective memory will be of immense social and economic benefit, particularly in addressing issues of memory impairment like dementia and some of his work has been in this application.

The scholarship behind his work, his achievements to date, and the impact of Professor Smeaton’s, often seminal and groundbreaking, articles are documented in his over 600 publications. He was also a Founding Member of the editorial board for three separate journals: Foundations & Trends in Information Retrieval, ACM Journal on Computers & Cultural Heritage and the Information Retrieval Journal.

Professor Smeaton is Director of The Insight Centre for Data Analysis at Dublin City University where he leads a team of over eighty researchers and he has been a Professor of Computing at DCU since 1997, during which time he has been Head of School and Executive Dean of Faculty. His research has received funding from the European Union, as well as national funding agencies including Enterprise Ireland and Science Foundation Ireland.

He is a Member of the Royal Irish Academy, a board member of the Irish Research Council, a member of the Scientific Committee of COST and he also serves on the Higher Education Authority Committee on Research and Graduate Education.

He remains an active scholar and leader in his discipline; his leadership and impact continue to gain international respect and a world leader in his field he is a worthy recipient of this award.