William Wang Assistant Professor

Bio: William Wang is the Director of UC Santa Barbara's Natural Language Processing group and Center for Responsible Machine Learning. He is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Computer Science at the University of California, Santa Barbara. He received his PhD from School of Computer Science, Carnegie Mellon University. He has broad interests in machine learning approaches to data science, including statistical relational learning, information extraction, computational social science, speech, and vision. He has published more than 80 papers at leading NLP/AI/ML conferences and journals, and received best paper awards (or nominations) at ASRU 2013, CIKM 2013, EMNLP 2015, and CVPR 2019, a DARPA Young Faculty Award (Class of 2018), two Google Faculty Research Awards (2018, 2019), three IBM Faculty Awards (2017-2019), two Facebook Research Awards (2018, 2019), an Amazon AWS Machine Learning Research Award, a JP Morgan Chase Faculty Research Award, an Adobe Research Award in 2018, and the Richard King Mellon Presidential Fellowship in 2011. He frequently serves as an Area Chair or Senior Area Chair for NAACL, ACL, EMNLP, and AAAI. He is an alumnus of Columbia University, and a former research scientist intern of Yahoo! Labs, Microsoft Research Redmond, and University of Southern California. In addition to research, William enjoys writing scientific articles that impact the broader online community: his microblog @王威廉 has 100,000+ followers and more than 2,000,000 views each month. His work and opinions appear at major tech media outlets such as Wired, VICE, Scientific American, Fortune, Fast Company, NASDAQ, The Next Web, Law.com, and Mental Floss.

Director, UCSB NLP Group
Director, Center for Responsible Machine Learning

Department of Computer Science
University of California, Santa Barbara
Harold Frank Hall, Room 1115
Santa Barbara, CA 93106

PhD, Carnegie Mellon University

Research Interests

  • Natural Language Processing
    • Information Extraction
    • Social Media
    • Language & Vision
    • Spoken Language Processing
  • Machine Learning
    • Statistical Relational Learning
    • Deep Learning
    • Structure Learning
    • Reinforcement Learning
  • Artificial Intelligence
    • Knowledge Representation & Reasoning
    • Knowledge Graphs


I am hiring a few talented PhD students to work with me. Please see my requirements above and check out an awesome video of UCSB.


Winter 2017 - CS190I: Introduction to NLP
Spring 2017 - CS292F: Deep Learning for NLP
Fall 2017 - CS40: Foundations of CS
Fall 2017 - CS595I: Advanced NLP/ML Seminar
Winter 2018 - CS291A: Deep Learning for NLP
Spring 2018 - CS165B: Machine Learning
Fall 2018 - CS190I/291A: Introduction to NLP
Spring 2019 - CS165B: Machine Learning
Fall 2019 - CS165B: Machine Learning


  • 07/07/2017: Watch my recent UCSB interview.
  • 04/03/2020: Congratulations Wenhu, Zhiyu, Andrew, Tony, Chen, Prince, and our collaborators for your accepted ACL 2020 paper.
  • 03/31/2020: We have received a JP Morgan Chase Faculty Research Award. Thank you!
  • 02/24/2020: We have two collaborative papers accepted to CVPR 2020! Congratulations to the lead authors from the University of Adelaide and Zhejiang University.
  • 02/21/2020: We received an Amazon Machine Learning Research Award. Thanks Amazon!
  • 02/21/2020: We held a successful Mellichamp Initiative Workshop on Mind and Machine Intelligence: a new bridge for CS, Psych and Econ.
  • 02/12/2020: We have received a new Google Faculty Research Award for 2019-2020. Thanks Google!
  • 02/10/2020: I will serve as a Senior Area Chair for the Interpretability and Analysis of Models for NLP track at EMNLP 2020.
  • 02/10/2020: CRML and my opinion on responsible AI were featured by Fortune.
  • 12/20/2019: Congratulations Wenhu Chen and Wenhan Xiong for their accepted ICLR 2020 papers!
  • 10/21/2019: Happy to serve as an Area Chair for ACL 2020.
  • 10/10/2019: Very honored to be selected as a Member of ACM's Future of Computing Academy (FCA).
  • 08/23/2019: We have received new funding support from IEE, Facebook, and IBM. Thank you!
  • 08/15/2019: UCSB NLP Group has four papers accepted to EMNLP-IJCNLP 2019. Congratulations!
  • 06/24/2019: Congratultions Xin Wang on winning the CVPR 2019 Best Student Paper Award.
  • 06/07/2019: I gave a tutorial on Deep Adversarial Learning for NLP at NAACL 2019 conference with Sameer Singh (UCI). Slides are available here.
  • 05/25/2019: UCSB NLP Group has received a new Google gift to work on language and vision research. Thanks Google!
  • 05/20/2019: I will serve as an Area Chair at AAAI 2020.
  • 05/15/2019: UCSB NLP Group has 7 long papers and 1 short paper accepted to ACL 2019.
  • 03/25/2019: I will serve as an Area Chair for Machine Learning at EMNLP-IJCNLP 2019.
  • 03/15/2019: We are grateful for a new Google Faculty Research Award. Thanks Google!
  • 03/05/2019: Congrats Xin for his accepted CVPR 2019 oral paper on vision-language navigation with Microsoft Research collaborators!
  • 03/05/2019: I am serving as an Area Chair for Machine Learning at ACL 2019.
  • 02/22/2019: Our group has 6 long papers accepted to NAACL 2019.
  • 02/05/2019: Together with Sameer Singh and Jiwei Li, we will present a tutorial on Deep Adversarial Learning for NLP at NAACL 2019.
  • 11/06/2018: We have received two faculty research grants from Intel AI. Thank you Intel!
  • 11/01/2018: UCSB NLP group has two papers accepted to AAAI 2019. Congratulations Yijun, Xin, and Jiawei!
  • 10/08/2018: I will serve as Area Chair for Vision and Robotics at NAACL 2019.
  • 08/27/2018: We have received a new IBM Faculty Award (2018)! Thanks IBM.
  • 08/24/2018: Very honored to receive the 2018 DARPA Young Faculty Award.
  • 08/10/2018: We have 4 papers accepted to EMNLP 2018! Congrats Jing, Wenhan, Wenhu, Xin, and Vivek!
  • 07/03/2018: Our paper "Look Before You Leap: Bridging Model-Free and Model-Based Reinforcement Learning for Planned-Ahead Vision-and-Language Navigation" was accepted to ECCV 2018! Congrats Xin, Wenhan, and Hongmin.
  • 06/24/2018: Our lab has received an Amazon AWS Grant for Research. Thanks AWS!
  • 05/24/2018: Our lab receives a Facebook Research Award to work on low-resource machine translation and comparable corpora mining. Thanks Facebook!
  • 05/10/2018: I will serve as an area chair for AAAI 2019.