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Dimitri Panteli Bertsekas (b. 1942, Athens, Greek: Δημήτρης Παντελής Μπερτσεκάς) is an applied mathematician, electrical engineer, and computer scientist, a McAfee professor at the department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science in School of Engineering at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT), Cambridge, Massachusetts, and also a Fulton Professor of Computational Decision Making at Arizona State University, Tempe.

Dimitri P. Bertsekas[1]
Dimitri Wiki Pict.jpg
ResidenceUnited States
CitizenshipAmerican, Greece
Alma materNational Technical University of Athens, Athens, Greece (1968)[2]
Known forNonlinear programming
Convex optimization
Dynamic programming
Approximate dynamic programming
Stochastic systems and Optimal control
Data communication network optimization
Awards1997 INFORMS Computing Society (ICS) Prize
1999 Greek National Award for Operations Research
2001 ACC John R. Ragazzini Education Award
2001 Member of the United States National Academy of Engineering
2009 INFORMS Expository Writing Award
2014 AACC Richard E. Bellman Control Heritage Award
2014 INFORMS Khachiyan Prize
2015 SIAM/MOS Dantzig Prize
2018 INFORMS John von Neumann Theory Prize
Scientific career
FieldsOptimization, Mathematics, Control theory, and Data communication networks
InstitutionsThe George Washington University
Stanford University
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Massachusetts Institute of Technology
ThesisControl of Uncertain Systems with a Set-Membership Description of the Uncertainty (1971)
Doctoral advisorIan Burton Rhodes[3]
Other academic advisorsMichael Athans
Doctoral studentsSteven E. Shreve
Barry Kort
Eli Gafni
Paul Tseng
Xavier Luque
Kevin Tsai
Jon Eckstein
Manos Varvarigos
Steve Patek
Angelia Nedich
Asuman Ozdaglar
Huizhen Yu
Mengdi Wang


Bertsekas was born in Greece and lived his childhood there. He studied for five years at the National Technical University of Athens, Greece (a time that, by his account, was spent mostly in playing poker and chess, and dating his future wife Joanna) and studied for about a year and a half at The George Washington University, Washington, D.C. (at night, while working as a research engineer), where he obtained his M.S in Electrical Engineering in 1969, and for about two years at MIT, where he obtained his doctorate in system science in 1971. Prior to joining the MIT faculty in 1979, he taught for three years at the Engineering-Economic Systems Dept. of Stanford University, and for five years at the Electrical and Computer Engineering Dept. of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. In 2019, he was appointed a full time professor at the School of Computing, Informatics, and Decision Systems Engineering at Arizona State University, Tempe, while maintaining a research position at MIT.[4]

He is known for his research work, and for his seventeen textbooks and monographs in theoretical and algorithmic optimization and control, and in applied probability. His work ranges from theoretical/foundational work, to algorithmic analysis and design for optimization problems, and to applications such as data communication and transportation networks, and electric power generation; see an article on his self-described "journey through optimization". He is featured among the top 100 most cited computer science authors in the CiteSeer search engine academic database[5] and digital library; see also his Google Scholar citations.[6] In 1995, he co-founded a publishing company, Athena Scientific that among others, publishes most of his books.

In the late 90s Bertsekas developed a strong interest in digital photography. His photographs have been exhibited on several occasions at M.I.T.,[7] and can also be accessed from his www site See also an article describing his career and views on mathematical research and artistic photography.

Awards and honorsEdit

Bertsekas was awarded the INFORMS 1997 Prize for Research Excellence in the Interface Between Operations Research and Computer Science[8] for his book "Neuro-Dynamic Programming" (co-authored with John N. Tsitsiklis); the 2000 Greek National Award for Operations Research; and the 2001 ACC John R. Ragazzini Education Award for outstanding contributions to education.[9] In 2001, he was elected to the US National Academy of Engineering for "pioneering contributions to fundamental research, practice and education of optimization/control theory, and especially its application to data communication networks".[10] In 2009, he was awarded the 2009 INFORMS Expository Writing Award for his ability to "communicate difficult mathematical concepts with unusual clarity, thereby reaching a broad audience across many disciplines. "[11] In 2014 he received the Richard E. Bellman Control Heritage Award from the American Automatic Control Council,[12][13] the Khachiyan Prize for life-time achievements in the area of optimization from the INFORMS Optimization Society.,[14] the 2015 Dantzig prize from SIAM and the Mathematical Optimization Society,[15] and the 2018 INFORMS John von Neumann Theory Prize (jointly with John N. Tsitsiklis) for the books "Neuro-Dynamic Programming" and "Parallel and Distributed Algorithms".[16][circular reference]

Textbooks and research monographsEdit

Bertsekas' textbooks include

all of which are used widely for classroom instruction in many universities including MIT.[17][18] Some of these books have been published in multiple editions, and have been translated in various foreign languages.

He has also written several widely referenced research monographs,[19] which collectively contain most of his research. These include:

His latest research monograph is Reinforcement Learning and Optimal Control (2019), which aims to explore the common boundary between dynamic programming/optimal control and artificial intelligence, and to form a bridge that is accessible by workers with background in either field.

Books for free downloadEdit

See alsoEdit


External linksEdit