SIGMOD is pleased to present the 2009 SIGMOD Jim Gray Doctoral Dissertation Award to Daniel Abadi, PhD, for his work at the MIT and his dissertation Query Execution in Column-Oriented Database Systems.This dissertation addresses all the key aspects of implementing an efficient database system based on a column-store architecture including storage management, compression strategies, query execution techniques, and alternative strategies for materializing result rows. The thesis is remarkable for its breadth, depth, system implementation and impact, and is an excellent treatise on the design and implementation of database systems employing a column-oriented storage model. The work is significant in bringing sound database design principles into practice and offering efficient solutions to urgent real problems.

Two other outstanding dissertations receive Honorable Mention recognizing their excellent theoretical foundations and development of algorithms with great impact on important practical problems:

  • Bee-Chung Chen for his dissertation at the University of Wisconsin titled Cube-space Data Mining, and
  • Ashwin Machanavajjhala for his dissertation at the Cornell University titled Defining and Enforcing Privacy in Data Sharing.

The annual SIGMOD Jim Gray Dissertation Award recognizes excellent research by doctoral candidates in the database field. For the 2009 award a dissertation needed to be completed and accepted by the candidate’s department between September 1, 2007 and December 15, 2008. This year 14 outstanding dissertations were nominated by their departments. The dissertations were evaluated by the SIGMOD Jim Gray Dissertation Awards Committee for technical depth and significance of the research contribution, potential impact on theory and practice, and quality of the presentation. All submissions were of extremely high quality and we congratulate all the nominated students and their departments for their excellent work and contributions to our field.

The Awards Committee: Beng Chin Ooi (co-chair), Johannes Gehkre (co-chair—excused due to COI), Alfons Kemper, Hank Korth, Alberto Laender, Gerome Miklau, Timos Sellis, Kyu-Young Whang.