Michael L. Littman

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Michael L. Littman
Littman in 2023
Born (1966-08-30) August 30, 1966 (age 57)
Alma materBrown University
Yale University
AwardsAAAI Fellow
Scientific career
FieldsComputer Science
InstitutionsBrown University
Rutgers University
Georgia Institute of Technology
Duke University
National Science Foundation
ThesisAlgorithms for sequential decision-making (1996)
Doctoral advisorLeslie P. Kaelbling

Michael Lederman Littman (born August 30, 1966) is a computer scientist, researcher, educator, and author. His research interests focus on reinforcement learning. He is currently a University Professor of Computer Science at Brown University, where he has taught since 2012.


Before graduate school, Littman worked with Thomas Landauer at Bellcore and was granted a patent for one of the earliest systems for cross-language information retrieval. Littman received his Ph.D. in computer science from Brown University in 1996. From 1996 to 1999, he was a professor at Duke University. During his time at Duke, he worked on an automated crossword solver PROVERB, which won an Outstanding Paper Award in 1999 from AAAI and competed in the American Crossword Puzzle Tournament. From 2000 to 2002, he worked at AT&T. From 2002 to 2012, he was a professor at Rutgers University; he chaired the department from 2009-12. In Summer 2012 he returned to Brown University as a full professor. He has also taught at Georgia Institute of Technology, where he was listed as an adjunct professor.[1] Littman is currently on rotation from Brown University as a Division Director at the National Science Foundation.[2]


Littman's research interests are varied but have focused mostly on reinforcement learning and related fields, particularly, in machine learning more generally, game theory, computer networking, partially observable Markov decision process solving, computer solving of analogy problems and other areas. He is also interested in computing education more broadly and has authored a book on programming for everyone.[3]



  1. ^ "Michael Littman | College of Computing". www.cc.gatech.edu. Retrieved 2020-08-19.
  2. ^ "Michael Littman | NSF Division Director".
  3. ^ Code to Joy, MIT Press
  4. ^ 2018 ACM Fellows Honored for Pivotal Achievements that Underpin the Digital Age, Association for Computing Machinery, December 5, 2018
  5. ^ AAAI Fellows, Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence


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