Jeff G Erickson

Jeff G Erickson
Jeff G Erickson
Sohaib and Sara Abbasi Professor
(217) 333-6769
3304 Siebel Center for Comp Sci

For more information


  • Ph.D., Computer Science, University of California, Berkeley, July 1996
  • M.S., Information and Computer Science, University of California, Irvine, June 1992
  • B.A., Computer Science and Mathematical Sciences (double major), Rice University, May 1987


I have been a faculty member in the Department of Computer Science since 1998 and a full professor since 2010; I was named a Sohaib and Sara Abbasi Professor in 2020. I have published over 100 technical papers in computational geometry, computational topology, graph algorithms, and related topics at the intersection of computer science and mathematics. Among many other conference committee memberships, I was the chair of the community-elected steering committee for the International Symposium on Computational Geometry (SOCG) from 2013 to 2016, and I am currently a SafeTOC (anti-harassment) advocate for SOCG and for the ACM-SIAM Symposium on Discrete Algorithms (SODA).

I primarily teach large algorithms classes; my free Algorithms textbook is used in dozens of computer science departments and by myriads of of students, recruiters, and professionals around the world. I am an Education Innovation Fellow in the Grainger College of Engineering's Academy of Excellence in Engineering Education. Exactly half of my former PhD students have won NSF CAREER awards. My own awards include a Sloan Research Fellowship, an NSF CAREER award, and numerous teaching and research awards from the University of Illinois.

At various times in my professional life I have been an associate department head (in charge of faculty hiring), the chair of the faculty advisory committee, an Apple II assembly-language programmer, a disk jockey, a pizza cook, and a knot-tying instructor at a Boy Scout camp. My current favorite brands of espresso are Unicorn Blood by Dark Matter and Redacted by Blue Copper. Please see for a detailed curriculum vitae.

Academic Positions

  • Sohaib and Sara Abbasi Professor, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2020-present
  • Professor, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2010-present
  • Associate Professor (tenured), University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 2004-2010
  • Assistant Professor, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, 1998-2004

Teaching Statement

I primarily teach courses in algorithms. My free algorithms textbook, along with an extensive archive of related course materials, is available at Please send me bug reports!

Research Statement

For a complete overview of my research activities, please see my publication archive at

Research Interests

  • Algorithms, data structures, and lower bounds
  • Computational and discrete geometry and topology
  • Combinatorial optimization

Research Areas

Books Authored or Co-Authored (Original Editions)

Selected Articles in Journals

Articles in Conference Proceedings

Conferences Organized or Chaired

  • Program committee, 33rd Annual ACM-SIAM Symposium on Discrete Algorithms (SODA 2022)
  • Program committee, 2019 Symposium on Simplicity in Algorithms (2019)
  • Program committee, 34th International Symposium on Computational Geometry (SOCG 2018) — submission forbidden
  • Organizing committee, Dagstuhl Seminar on Computational Geometry (2019)
  • Program committee, 28th Annual ACM-SIAM Symposium on Discrete Algorithms (SODA 2017) — submission forbidden
  • Organizing committee, Oberwolfach Seminar on Computational Geometric and Algebraic Topology (2015)
  • Steering committee chair, Symposium on Computational Geometry (SOCG), 2013–2016. Committee members elected by the research community, officers elected by the committee. Oversaw the 2014 community vote ending SOCG's 30-year affiliation with ACM; see for details.
  • Program committee chair, 23rd Annual ACM Symposium on Computational Geometry (SOCG 2007)

Teaching Honors

  • Education Innovation Fellow, Grainger College of Engineering, 2017-2018 and 2019-2021
  • Campus Award For Excellence in Undergraduate Teaching, May 2007
  • Everitt Award for Teaching Excellence, College of Engineering, April 2001
  • List of Teachers Ranked as Excellent by Their Students: Spring 1999, Fall 2000, Spring 2001 (outstanding rating), Fall 2001, Fall 2005, Fall 2006, Spring 2007, Spring 2008, Spring 2010, Fall 2010, Spring 2011, Fall 2012, Fall 2013, Fall 2014, Spring 2015 (outstanding rating), Fall 2015, Spring 2016, Spring 2017 (outstanding rating), Fall 2017, Spring 2018, Fall 2019, Spring 2020, and Fall 2021 (outstanding rating)

Research Honors

  • NSF Career Award (CCR-0093348), 2001-2006
  • Alfred P. Sloan Research Fellowship, 1999-2001

Recent Courses Taught

  • CS 374 (ECE 374) - Intro to Algs & Models of Comp
  • CS 473 (CSE 414, MATH 473) - Algorithms
  • CS 498 DL1 (CS 498 TC3, CS 498 TC4) - Computational Geometry
  • CS 591 JE (CS 591 TCS) - Advanced Seminar
  • CS 598 JGE - Algorithms for 1D Structures