"You must believe in spring" - Bill Evans

jrbn ~# Jacopo Urbani

meI’m an assistant professor in Computer Science at the Vrije Universiteit Amsterdam (VUA), and a guest researcher at the CWI Institute and at the Max Planck Institute for Informatics (MPII). In the past, I was a postdoc at the VUA (where I also obtained my PhD), MPII, and a visiting scholar at Stanford University.

My research focuses on how to process efficiently very large amounts of data to extract new (and interesting) knowledge. I primarily focus on datasets which are available on the Web. If you are interested, please check out my publication list on Google Scholar or DBLP to have a better idea of my research area.

I received a number of awards for my research, and I’m very honored for that. A few papers that I co-authored have received either a honorable mention or a best paper award at top conferences. In 2010, my work on forward inference with MapReduce has won the IEEE SCALE challenge. In 2012, the Network Institute awarded me the prize “Most Promising Young Researcher Award”. In 2013, my PhD was awarded with the qualification cum laude, which was given only to 5% of the theses in our department. In 2014, my PhD work received an honourable mention as best PhD thesis in Computer Science in the country. The award was given by the Christiaan Huygens society, after a selection performed by KNAW (Royal Netherlands Academy of Arts and Sciences).


I was born in Italy in 1984, and grew up in a small village right before the Alps (here).

In 2004, I started to study Computer Science (CS) at the University of Venice. During my bachelor, I’ve studied for six months at the University of Vienna and worked for a few months as a developer for a big Italian bank. I graduated in 2007 with a final score of 110/110 cum laude.

After my bachelor, I moved to the Netherlands to follow a Master in Artificial Intelligence at the Vrije Universiteit of Amsterdam. During my studies, I worked as a research assistant and developed some small projects inside the CS department (e.g. I wrote a ISO9660 driver for Minix). I graduated in 2009 cum laude and with a GPA of about 9/10.

Then, I started a PhD program in Computer Science at the same university under the supevision of professors Henri Bal and Frank van Harmelen. In 2010, I visited for a few months the Yahoo! Research Labs In Barcelona. In 2013, I finished my PhD graduating cum laude. My PhD thesis is about performing reasoning over large amounts of structured data on the Web using distributed algorithms.

In the same year, I was being awarded a prestigious personal grant by the Dutch National Research Council, which allows me to continue my research for three more years. In 2014, I moved to California to be a visiting scholar at Stanford University, and more precisely in the Stanford Center for Biomedical Informatics Research. Then, I spent some time as researcher at the Max-Planck Institute for Informatics in Germany, which is an institution that I’m still affiliated with. Currently, I’m an assistant professor at the Vrije Universiteit of Amsterdam.

My wife gives big fines to companies that misbehave. My children play, eat, and sleep.


jacopo AT cs.vu.nl
jurbani AT mpi-inf.mpg.de

(Social) Networks:

Jacopo Urbani - Room R.429
VU - Dept. Computer Science
De Boelelaan 1081A
1081HV Amsterdam
The Netherlands