Welcome to the thirteenth edition of SPCOM. This edition is very special because we will be meeting in the virtual world. The first SPCOM was organized in 1990. Its journey over the past three decades has been a stupendous one. From a small national conference, it has transformed and attained an international stature. SPCOM attracts high-profile speakers from all over the world and features premier quality scientific content.
While we were busy making plans to welcome you all to Bangalore in July and host you in the beautiful campus of Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Covid-19 happened! It took us all by surprise and the world has never been the same since then. With India entering a lockdown on March 24th and international travel suspended, a lot of planning had to be undone and new plans had to be drawn at a short notice. Thanks to the efforts of our fantastic and dedicated Organizing Committee, we have been able to adapt to the new situation relatively fast and firm up plans to host a virtual event.
SPCOM 2020 features four high-profile plenary lectures on cutting-edge topics in signal processing and communication. The Tutorials Committee has arranged for a set of eight excellent tutorials delivered by prominent experts on state-of-the-art research topics covering all major areas of interest to the conference. The Technical Program Chairs have worked hard to draft a technical program comprising a highly selective set of 97 contributed papers. The reviews were double-blind and the acceptance rate was 31.5%. We would like to thank all the contributing authors who submitted top-quality scientific papers. The conference proceedings will appear in IEEE Xplore. The Technical Program Chairs have also shortlisted finalists for the Best Paper Award and Best Student Paper Award. A jury comprising distinguished experts from the Indian academia has selected the award winners in each category after a thorough evaluation. The names of the award winners will be disclosed during the inaugural session. SPCOM has always endeavored to promote a strong research culture among the students. In keeping with that tradition, we have solicited nominations for the Best Doctoral Dissertation Award. The jury has also identified the top dissertations for the academic years 2018-19 and 2019-20. The award winners will be announced during the inaugural session.
Several colleagues from premier academic institutions within the country and industry have come together to formulate 12 special sessions focused on various cutting-edge topics. These sessions feature 64 invited talks delivered by speakers coming from leading universities and labs all over the world. The “Women in Engineering” session is being introduced for the first time in SPCOM and features lectures by accomplished women scientists and researchers. We also have a significant industry presence in this edition of SPCOM with a dedicated track containing talks by eminent speakers from the industry. The conference will be followed by a live satellite event -- a thematic workshop on Quantum Information Processing organized by a team of six faculty members from IISc. The workshop is supported by the Division of Electrical, Electronics, and Computer Sciences (EECS) at IISc.
Thanks to the contributing authors who have paid a registration fee and the generous support received from the sponsors, we have been able to offer complimentary registrations to all delegates. We are indebted to Indian Institute of Science for facilitating and supporting the conference and rendering all possible assistance. We have received a record number of registrations this time, more than 1800, which is five-fold higher participation than that seen in the previous editions. Perhaps, going “virtual” was the crucial factor that enhanced the outreach.
We have several parallel tracks of contributed and invited papers followed by live Q&A sessions. The videos of all the presentations, except the live sessions, will be available on the virtual platform “on-demand” during the conference, and “fully on demand” for a couple of weeks after the conference concludes, before being archived. Given the flexibility in accessing the content, we did not attempt to synchronize the sessions. The live Q&A sessions are aimed at giving the attendees a more realistic experience of attending the event.
We express our sincere and deep gratitude to the numerous volunteers who have invested their time and effort over the past several months and served untiringly on the Organizing Committee in various roles and capacities. Their professional commitment is laudable and their outstanding team-spirit, hard work, and dedication is what made this conference possible.
SPCOM 2020 is going to be a new experience for all of us. We hope you will enjoy your journey into this first-ever virtual edition of SPCOM.
Chandra Sekhar Seelamantula and R. Venkatesh Babu
General Chairs, SPCOM 2020
Chandra Sekhar Seelamantula (Senior Member, IEEE) is an Associate Professor at the Department of Electrical Engineering, Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore. He obtained a Ph.D. from IISc Department of Electrical Communication Engineering in 2005 under the supervision of Prof. T.V. Sreenivas and worked as a postdoctoral fellow under Prof. Michael Unser, Biomedical Imaging Group, Ecole polytechnique federale de Lausanne during 2006-2009. He is prsently the Chair of the IEEE Signal Processing Society Bangalore Chapter. He is a Senior Area Editor of IEEE Signal Processing Letters, an Associate Editor of IEEE Transactions on Image Processing, and a member of the IEEE Computational Imaging Technical Committee. He is a recipient of the Prof. Priti Shankar Award for Excellence in Teaching at IISc. He presently directs the research activities of the Spectrum Lab at the Department of Electrical Engineering, IISc. His research interests include signal and image processing, sparsity driven methods for solving inverse problems in computational imaging, and machine learning.
Venkatesh Babu received his Ph.D degree from Dept. of Electrical Engineering, Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore. Thereafter, he held postdoctoral positions at NTNU, Norway and IRISA/INRIA, Rennes, France, through ERCIM fellowship. Subsequently, he worked as a research fellow at NTU, Singapore. He spent couple of years working in industry before returning back to the institute in August 2010. He is currently an Associate Professor at CDS, IISc