Jack W. Davidson

2008 Taylor L. Booth Education Award




“For sustained effort to transform introductory computer science education through lab-based multimedia pedagogy coupled with examples that attract a diverse student body”



Jack W. Davidson is a Professor of Computer Science in the School of Engineering and Applied Science at the University of Virginia. He joined the faculty in 1981 after receiving his Ph.D. in Computer Science from the University of Arizona. Professor Davidson’s research interests include compilers, programming languages, computer architecture, embedded systems, and computer security. He is the author of more than 140 papers in these fields. Professor Davidson’s current research is focused on computer security. He is the principal investigator on several ongoing grants from the National Science Foundation and other agencies to develop comprehensive methods for protecting software from malicious attacks.

Professor Davidson is a Fellow of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) and a long-time member of the IEEE Computer Society. He served as an Associate Editor of Transactions on Programming Languages and Systems for six years, and he is currently an Associate Editor of Transactions on Architecture and Compiler Optimizations.  He was General Chair of the 1998 Conference on Programming Languages Design and Implementation and 2002 IEEE International Conference on Parallel Architectures and Compilation Techniques.

Professor Davidson is co-author of two best-selling introductory programming textbooks, C++ Program Design: An Introduction to Object-Oriented Programming, 3rd edition and Java 5.0 Program Design: An Introduction to Object-Oriented Programming, 2nd edition. He and his co-author, James P. Cohoon, organized numerous workshops for college professors on how to teach object-oriented programming. Davidson is currently developing an innovative undergraduate curriculum focused on computer security. He helped organize several international summer schools including the 2007 International Summer School on Advanced Computer Architecture and Compilation for Embedded Systems, the inaugural 2008 Indo-US Engineering Faculty Leadership Institute held in Mysore, India, and the First International Summer School on Information Security and Protection to be held in Beijing, China in the summer of 2010.