Alham Fikri Aji / Curriculum Vitae

alham.fikri@mbzuai.ac.ae

Education

  • PhD, University of Edinburgh Nov 2016 - Jun 2020
    Thesis: Approximating Neural Machine Translation for Efficiency.
    Supervised by Kenneth Heafield and Rico Sennrich.
    Examiner: Graham Neubig and Barry Haddow
  • MSc Artificial Intelligence, University of Edinburgh Sep 2014 - Aug 2015
    With distinction. Final project: Haiku generator with word vector model.
  • BSc Computer Science, Universitas Indonesia Aug 2010 - Jul 2014
    Final project: Earthquake detector from phone’s accelerometer reading.

Working Experience

  • Assistant Professor, MBZUAI Jan 2023 - Current
  • Applied Scientist, Amazon Alexa AI Oct 2021 - Jan 2023
  • Postdoctoral Research Associate, University of Edinburgh Jun 2020 - Jul 2021
  • Research Scientist, Kata.ai Nov 2019 - Sep 2021
  • Engineering Intern, Google Research Jul 2017 - Nov 2017
  • Language Engineer, Apple Siri Oct 2015 - Oct 2016

Awards

  • Best Resource Paper Award, EACL 2024
  • Best Resource Paper Award, AACL 2023
  • Outstanding Paper Award, EACL 2023
  • Outstanding Contribution Award, WNGT 2019
  • World Finalists, ACM-ICPC 2014
  • Silver Medalists, International Olympiad of Informatics (IOI) 2010

Professional Activity

Service to Scientific Communities

  • Reviewer and Program Committee
    • Conferences: ARR, ACL, COLING, ICML, ICLR, NeurIPS, LREC
    • Workshop: WNGT, TL4NLP
  • Area Chair: ACL (2023), EMNLP (2023), COLM (2024)
  • Local Chair: COLING (2025)
  • Organizer: South-East Asia Language Processing (SEALP) 2023, Semeval shared task organizer (2024, 2025)

University Service

  • MBZUAI HPC Committee, MBZUAI 2023
  • MBZUAI PhD Qualifying Exam Committee, MBZUAI 2023
  • MBZUAI Executive Education Program advisor, 2023
  • MBZUAI PhD Candidacy Exam Committee: 4 students
  • MBZUAI MSc Thesis Defence Committee: 7 students

Informatics Olympiad

  • Problem Setter: OSN Indonesia (2013, 2014, 2015), ACM-ICPC (2014, 2015), APIO (2015), Gemastik (2016)
  • Committee: Gemastik (2016), TOKI-Open (2018), IOI (2022)
  • Training: Indonesia’s Pre-OSN Distance training (2009, 2010), Indonesia’s National Camp (2011, 2012, 2013), University of Edinburgh ACM-ICPC preparation (2014), Saudi Arabia National Team (2020)

Publications

I mainly publish at ACL conferences. You may also refer to my Google Scholar for an updated list of publications. My papers have accumulated over 4,000 citations and I have achieved an h-index of 20.
denotes my role as (Co-)senior author(s), whereas denotes my role as main author(s).

Peer-Reviewed Conferences

Peer-Reviewed Workshops

Supervision and Mentorship

Current Students

Aside from MBZUAI, I co-supervise students from Indonesian universities, where I commit to meeting them weekly.

Past Students

  • Jonibek Mansurov — MSc at MBZUAIJan 2023 - Jun 2024
    Role: Main Advisor; with Preslav Nakov
    Current position: PhD at MBZUAI
  • Ni Putu Intan Maharani — MSc at Institut Teknologi BandungAug 2022 - Mar 2024
    Role: Co Advisor; with Ayu Purwarianti
    Current position: Delloite
  • Jalaluddin Al-Mursyidy Fadhlurrahman — MSc at Institut Teknologi BandungAug 2022 - Mar 2024
    Role: Co Advisor; with Ayu Purwarianti
  • Muhammad Razif Rizqullah — MSc at Institut Teknologi BandungAug 2022 - Mar 2024
    Role: Co Advisor; with Ayu Purwarianti
  • Minghao Wu — Visiting PhD StudentApr 2023 - Oct 2023
    Role: Research Advisor
    Current position: PhD at Monash University
  • Chenxi Whitehouse — Visiting PhD StudentApr 2023 - Oct 2023
    Role: Research Advisor
    Current position: Research Scientist at Amazon
  • Muhammad Ravi Sulthan Habibi — BSc at Universitas IndonesiaAug 2022 - Aug 2023
    Role: Co Advisor; with Rahmad Mahendra

Research Advisorship

  • Chenyang Lyu — Postdoctoral Researcher at MBZUAIAug 2023 - Present
    Role: Research Advisor
  • Mohamed Fazli Mohamed Imam — Research Assistant at MBZUAIJul 2024 - Present
    Role: Research Advisor
  • Muhammad Farid Adilauzarda — Research Assistant at MBZUAIAug 2023 - Present
    Role: Research Advisor
  • Rendi Chevi — Research Assistant at MBZUAIAug 2023 - Present
    Role: Research Advisor
  • Jinheon Baek — Research Intern at Amazon AlexaOct 2022 - Jan 2023
    Role: Research Advisor
    Current position: PhD at KAIST
  • Tirana Noor Fatyanosa — Research Intern at Kata.aiNov 2020 - Apr 2021
    Role: Research Advisor
    Current position: Assistant Professor at Universitas Brawijaya

Grants and Funding

  • Microsoft Research: “Developing Robust Methodology and Datasets for Holistic Evaluation of Cultural Awareness and Bias in Foundation Models” (Co-PI)
    Amount: 20000 USD
  • Cohere For AI research grants: “SEACrowd: Consolidating South-east Asia NLP dataset” (Co-PI)
    Amount: 3000 USD
  • IBM: “Question Answering for Arabic Dialects”
    Amount: Postdoctoral sponsorship of Chenyang Lyu of 100000 USD

Teachings

  • Introduction to Data Science (for MSc) - Monash Indonesia Short Summer 2024
    Main instructor. Introduction to Python, data science, and AI.
  • NLP702 Advanced Natural Language Processing (for MSc) - MBZUAI Spring 2024
    Co-instructor. Covered efficient and large-scale NLP, including LLM, distributed training, distillation, parameter-efficient fine-tuning, and linear Transformers.
  • NLP801 Deep Learning for Language Processing (for PhD) - MBZUAI Fall 2023
    Main instructor. Designed and taught the module, covering various recent research topics and trends in NLP.

Talks

  • Training Lightweight Model via Knowledge Distillation and Parameter Efficient Finetuning
    Mexican NLP Summer School, Co-located with NAACL (14-15th June 2024)
  • Consolidating NLP Resources for South-East Asian Languages
    Google Singapore, Invited Talk (27th May 2024)
  • Constructing High-Quality Corpora for Underrepresented and Extremely Low-Resource Languages
    Google Singapore, Invited Talk (21th November 2023)
  • Building Multilingual & Multicultural LLMs: Methods and Challenges
    AI Singapore, Invited Talk (20th November 2023)
  • Q2AI: A Quick Course to Quick AI
    PRICAI, Tutorial (17th November 2023)
  • Current Status of NLP in South East Asia with Insights from Multilingualism and Language Diversity
    AACL, Tutorial (1st November 2023)
  • Surviving your PhD Study
    Telkom University, Invited Talk (2nd August 2023)
  • Generative AI with Large Language Models Workshop
    Institut Teknologi Bandung, Invited Talk (1st August 2023)
  • Multilingual and Low-Resource NLP
    Universitas Indonesia & Tokopedia AI Center, Invited Talk (25th May 2023)
  • Can AI Complete My Academic Writings?
    Doctrine UK, Online Talk (14th May 2023)
  • Multilingual NLP through Collaborative Research
    The 2nd Composable, Automatic and Scalable Learning Workshop (CASL), Invited Talk (23rd February 2023)
  • Sequence-to-Sequence and Neural Machine Translation Model
    Universitas Indonesia, Guest Lecture (28th April 2021)