Professor Ian Horrocks Awarded BCS Lovelace Medal 2020

  • Photo of Professor Ian Horrocks who has short grey hair
13 November, 2020

Fellow in Computer Science Professor Ian Horrocks has been awarded the BCS Lovelace Medal 2020: Reasoning Systems. The BCS Lovelace Medal recognises those who have made significant contributions to the advancement of information systems.

This year’s BCS Lovelace Medal was won jointly by two projects, one of which was led by Professor Horrocks. He has been recognised this year for his major contributions to the development of modern description logics and reasoning systems, in their adoption as the basis for ontology languages, and in the development and standardisation of the W3C's OWL ontology language.

Though complex in nature, reasoning systems are in use everywhere, and are used to power devices like Siri and Alexa and helping Google search out the information we’re looking for online.

In addition to his Fellowship at Oriel, which he has held since 2007, and his position within the Department of Computer Science, Professor Horrocks also serves as Editor-in-Chief of the Journal of Web Semantics, is President of the Semantics Web Science Association (SWSA) and is the Founder of Oxford Semantic Technologies.

On receiving the award, Professor Horrocks said: "It is a great honour personally to receive the award. It's particularly nice to receive an award that is named after an important pioneer of algorithm design, which is what I think of myself as doing. But also, I'd like to say that I think it's really important as recognition for work in the area. I don't want to represent it as being my personal work, it's work that I've carried out with a whole bunch of collaborators - brilliant people that I've been lucky enough to work with and of course builds on the work of many other researchers across the area."

You can watch and read an interview with Professor Horrocks on the BCS website: