ICML 2021 Invited Speakers — ML for Science

By: Stefanie Jegelka and Ameet Talwalkar (ICML21 Communication Chairs)

With ICML 2021 underway, we wanted to briefly highlight the upcoming invited talks. A general theme of the invited talks this year is “machine learning for science.” The Program Chairs (Marina Meila and Tong Zhang) have invited world-renowned scientists from various disciplines to discuss their problems and the corresponding machine learning challenges. By exposing the machine learning community to these fascinating problems, we hope that we can help to further expand the applicability of machine learning to a wide range of scientific domains. 

  • Daphne Koller (Tuesday, July 20th at 8am PDT): Dr. Koller is a pioneer in the field of machine learning, and is currently the Founder and CEO of Insitro, which leverages machine learning for drug discovery. She was the Rajeev Motwani Professor of Computer Science at Stanford University, where she served on the faculty for 18 years. She was the co-founder, co-CEO and President of Coursera, and the Chief Computing Officer of Calico, an Alphabet company in the healthcare space. She received the MacArthur Foundation Fellowship in 2004, was awarded the ACM Prize in Computing in 2008, and was recognized as one of TIME Magazine’s 100 most influential people in 2012.
  • Xiao Cunde and Dahe Qin (Tuesday, July 20th at 8pm PDT): Dr. Cunde is a glaciologist and Deputy Director of the Institute of the Climate System, Chinese Academy of Meteorological Sciences. He has worked in the fields of polar glaciology and meteorology since 1997. His major research focus has been ice core studies relating to paleo-climate and paleo-environment, and present day cold region meteorological and glaciological processes that impact environmental and climatic changes. Dr. Qin is the Former Director of the China Meteorological Administration. He is a glaciologist and the first Chinese ever to cross the South Pole. He was a member of the 1989 International Cross South Pole Expedition and has published numerous ground-breaking articles, using evidence gathered from his Antarctic expeditions.
  • Esther Duflo (Wednesday, July 21st at 8am PDT): Dr. Duflo is the Abdul Latif Jameel Professor of Poverty Alleviation and Development Economics in the Department of Economics at MIT and a co-founder and co-director of the Abdul Latif Jameel Poverty Action Lab (J-PAL). In her research, she seeks to understand the economic lives of the poor, with the aim to help design and evaluate social policies. She has worked on health, education, financial inclusion, environment and governance. In 2019, she received a Nobel Prize in Economic Sciences “for their experimental approach to alleviating global poverty”. In particular, she and co-authors have introduced a new approach to obtaining reliable answers about the best ways to fight global poverty.
  • Edward Chang (Wednesday, July 21st at 8pm PDT): Dr. Chang is a Professor in the Department of Neurological Surgery at the UCSF Weill Institute for Neurosciences. He is a neurosurgeon and uses machine learning to understand brain functions. His research focuses on the brain mechanisms for speech, movement and human emotion. He co-directs the Center for Neural Engineering and Prostheses, a collaborative enterprise of UCSF and UC Berkeley. The center brings together experts in engineering, neurology and neurosurgery to develop state-of-the-art biomedical technology to restore function for patients with neurological disabilities such as paralysis and speech disorders.
  • Cecilia Clementi (Thursday, July 22nd at 8am PDT):  Dr. Clementi is a Professor of Chemistry, and Chemical and Biomolecular Engineering, and Senior Scientist in the Center for Theoretical Biological Physics at Rice University, and an Einstein Fellow at FU Berlin. She researches strategies to study complex biophysical processes on long timescales, and she is an expert in the simulation of biomolecules using large-scale ML. Her group designs multiscale models, adaptive sampling approaches, and data analysis tools, and uses both data-driven methods and theoretical formulations.

To register for the conference and check out these talks, please visit: https://icml.cc/.

Updates for the new decade

This blog has been quiet for the last year. I have quite a bit to write about but found myself often out of time between work at Microsoft, ICML duties, and family life. Nevertheless, I expect to get back to more substantive discussions as I adjust to the new load.

In the meantime, I’ve updated the site in various ways: SSL now works, and mail for people registering new accounts should work again.

I also setup a twitter account as I’ve often had things left unsaid. I’m not a fan of blog-by-twitter (which seems artificially disjointed), so I expect to use twitter for shorter things and hunch.net for longer things.

FAQ on ICML 2019 Code Submission Policy

ICML 2019 has an option for supplementary code submission that the authors can use to provide additional evidence to bolster their experimental results. Since we have been getting a lot of questions about it, here is a Frequently Asked Questions for authors.

1. Is code submission mandatory?

No. Code submission is completely optional, and we anticipate that high quality papers whose results are judged by our reviewers to be credible will be accepted to ICML, even if code is not submitted.

2. Does submitted code need to be anonymized?

ICML is a double blind conference, and we expect authors to put in reasonable effort to anonymize the submitted code and institution. This means that author names and licenses that reveal the organization of the authors should be removed.

Please note that submitted code will not be made public — eg, only the reviewers, Area Chair and Senior Area Chair in charge will have access to it during the review period. If the paper gets accepted, we expect the authors to replace the submitted code by a non-anonymized version or link to a public github repository.

3. Are anonymous github links allowed?

Yes. However, they have to be on a branch that will not be modified after the submission deadline. Please enter the github link in a standalone text file in a submitted zip file.

4. How will the submitted code be used for decision-making?

The submitted code will be used as additional evidence provided by the authors to add more credibility to their results. We anticipate that high quality papers whose results are judged by our reviewers to be credible will be accepted to ICML, even if code is not submitted. However, if something is unclear in the paper, then code, if submitted, will provide an extra chance to the authors to clarify the details. To encourage code submission, we will also provide increased visibility to papers that submit code.

5. If code is submitted, do you expect it to be published with the rest of the supplementary? Or, could it be withdrawn later?

We expect submitted code to be published with the rest of the supplementary. However, if the paper gets accepted, then the authors will get a chance to update the code before it is published by adding author names, licenses, etc.

6. Do you expect the code to be standalone? For example, what if it is part of a much bigger codebase?

We expect your code to be readable and helpful to reviewers in verifying the credibility of your results. It is possible to do this through code that is not standalone — for example, with proper documentation.

7. What about pseudocode instead of code? Does that count as code submission?

Yes, we will count detailed pseudocode as code submission as it is helpful to reviewers in validating your results.

8. Do you expect authors to submit data?

We understand that many of our authors work with highly sensitive datasets, and are not asking for private data submission. If the dataset used is publicly available, there is no need to provide it. If the dataset is private, then the authors can submit a toy or simulated dataset to illustrate how the code works.

9. Who has access to my code?

Only the reviewers, Area Chair and Senior Area Chair assigned to your paper will have access to your code. We will instruct reviewers, Area Chair and Senior Area Chair to keep the code submissions confidential (just like the paper submissions), and delete all code submissions from their machine at the end of the review cycle. Please note that code submission is also completely optional.

10. I would like to revise my code/add code during author feedback. Is this permitted?

Unfortunately, no. But please remember that code submission is entirely optional.

The detailed FAQ as well other Author and Style instructions are available here.

Kamalika Chaudhuri and Ruslan Salakhutdinov
ICML 2019 Program Chairs

ICML 2019: Some Changes and Call for Papers

The ICML 2019 Conference will be held from June 10-15 in Long Beach, CA — about a month earlier than last year. To encourage reproducibility as well as high quality submissions, this year we have three major changes in place.

There is an abstract submission deadline on Jan 18, 2019. Only submissions with proper abstracts will be allowed to submit a full paper, and placeholder abstracts will be removed. The full paper submission deadline is Jan 23, 2019.

This year, the author list at the paper submission deadline (Jan 23) is final. No changes will be permitted after this date for accepted papers.

Finally, to foster reproducibility, we highly encourage code submission with papers. Our submission form will have space for two optional supplementary files — a regular supplementary manuscript, and code. Reproducibility of results and easy accessibility of code will be taken into account in the decision-making process.

Our full Call for Papers is available here.

Kamalika Chaudhuri and Ruslan Salakhutdinov
ICML 2019 Program Chairs