Kevin Chen-Chuan Chang

Professor, Computer Science, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

2134 Siebel Center
201 N. Goodwin Avenue
Urbana, IL 61801-2302
Phone: (217) 244-2919
E-mail: kcchang (at) illinois (dot) edu

Assistant: Donna Coleman
Office: 2106 SC
Phone: (217) 244-8837
Fax: (217) 265-6494
E-mail: donnakc (at) illinois (dot) edu

Research | Classes | Publications |

Bio. Kevin C.C. Chang is a Professor in Computer ScienceUniversity of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where he leads the FORWARD Data Lab for search, integration, and mining of data. He received a BS from National Taiwan University and PhD from Stanford University, in Electrical Engineering. His research addresses large scale information access, for search, mining, and integration across structured and unstructured big data, with current focuses on "entity-centric" Web search/mining and social media analytics. He received two Best Paper Selections in VLDB 2000 and 2013, an NSF CAREER Award in 2002, an NCSA Faculty Fellow Award in 2003, IBM Faculty Awards in 2004 and 2005, Academy for Entrepreneurial Leadership Faculty Fellow Award in 2008, and the Incomplete List of Excellent Teachers at University of Illinois in 2001, 2004, 2005, 2006, 2010, and 2011. He is passionate to bring research results to the real world and, with his students, co-founded Cazoodle, a startup from the University of Illinois, for deepening vertical "data-aware" search over the web.

Research. I lead the FORWARD Group, which is part of the larger Data and Information Systems Laboratories, at the CS department of UIUC. Our research overall aims at bridging structured and unstructured big data--- to bring structured/semantic-rich access to the myriad and massive unstructured data which accounts for most of the world's information. Therefore, our research spans across data mining, data management/databases, information retrieval, machine learning, with current efforts focusing on interactive data managemententity-centric Web search and mining, social media analytics, and social network miningAs our objectives, we aim at developing novel systems, principled algorithms, and formal theories that ultimately deliver real world applications. As our approaches, we seek to be inspired by and learn from the data we are tackling-- i.e., we believe the key to tame big data is to learn the wisdom hidden in the large scale of the data.

Founded CazoodleSearch, integrate, and organize the real world, a UIUC startup aiming at bringing forward data-aware search, the objectives of the MetaQuerier and WISDM projects, to the world.

Classes. I teach database systems and data mining, with the following recent courses. 

  • CS511 Advanced Data Management.
  • CS411 Database Systems.
  • CS412 Introduction to Data Mining.

PhD/Postdoc Alumni

  • Denghao Ma. PhD visitor. Renmin University of China. Research: Leveraging Fine-Grained Wikipedia Categories for Entity Search. Sep, 2017 - Aug, 2019.
  • Mangesh Bendre. PhD. Research: Towards Unifying Spreadsheets with Databases for Ad-hoc Interactive Data Management at Scale. Sep, 2011 - Dec, 2018. First employment: Research Staff, Visa Research.
  • Chaochao Chen. PhD visitor. Zhejiang University. Research: Semi-Supervised Learning Meets Factorization: Learning to Recommend With Chain Graph Model. Sep, 2014 - Sep, 2015.
  • Yuan Fang. PhD. Research: Walking Forward and Backward: Towards Graph-based Searching and Mining. Jan, 2010 - Jul, 2014. First employment: Research Staff, A*STAR, Singapore.
  • Mainwei Zhou. PhD. Research: Entity-Centric Search: Querying By Entities and For Entities. Sep, 2008 - Jul, 2014. First employment: Research Staff, Yahoo! Labs, Sunnyvale, California.
  • Vincent W. Zheng. Post-doc. Research: Cold-Start Heterogeneous-Device Wireless Localization. Sep, 2011 - May, 2013. First employment: Research Staff, Advanced Digital Sciences Center in Singapore.
  • Rui Li. PhD. Research: Towards a General Platform for Analyzing Social Media. Sep, 2008 - Dec, 2013. First employment: Research Staff, Yahoo! Labs, Sunnyvale, California.
  • Hady W. Lauw. Post-doc. Research: RoundTripRank: Graph-based Proximity with Importance and Specificity. Apr, 2010 - Nov, 2011. First employment: Assistant Professor, Singapore Management University, Singapore.
  • Fanwei Zhu. PhD visitor. Zhejiang University. Research: Incremental and Accuracy-Aware Personalized PageRank through Scheduled Approximation. Sep, 2009 - Sep, 2010.
  • Tao Cheng. PhD. Research: Toward Entity-Aware Search. Sep, 2004 - Jun, 2010. First employment: Research Staff, Microsoft Research, Redmond, Washington.
  • Bin He. PhD. Research: A Holistic Paradigm for Large Scale Schema Matching. May, 2002 - Jun, 2006. First employment: Research Staff, IBM Almaden Center, San Jose, California.
  • Chengkai Li. PhD. Research: Enabling Data Retrieval: By Ranking and Beyond. May, 2001 - Jun, 2006. First employment: Assistant Professor, University of Texas at Arlington, Arlington, Texas.
  • Zhen Zhang. PhD. Research: Large Scale Information Integration on the Web: Finding, Understanding and Querying Web Databases. Sep, 2001 - Dec, 2006. First employment: CTO, Cazoodle Inc.
  • Seung-won Hwang. PhD. Research: Supporting Ranking for Data Retrieval. Aug, 2000 - Jun, 2005. First employment: Assistant Professor, Pohang University of Science and Technology, Pohang, Gyeongbuk, Korea.


  • Best-Papers Selection, VLDB 2013.
  • Academy of Entrepreneurial Leadership Faculty Fellow Award, 2008.
  • IBM Faculty Award, 2004, 2005.
  • NCSA (National Center for Supercomputing Applications) Faculty Fellows Award, 2003.
  • National Science Foundation CAREER Award 2002.
  • UIUC List of Teachers Ranked as Excellent by Their Students, Fall 2001, Spring 2004, Fall 2005, Spring 2006, Fall 2010, Fall 2011.
  • Best-Papers Selection, VLDB 2000.
  • Philips Research FMA Fellowship, 1996 - 1998.


  • Associate Editor for PVLDB 2015, Apr. 2014 -- Mar. 2015.
  • Associate Editor for IEEE Transactions on Knowledge and Data Engineering, Jan. 2013 -- Present.
  • Track Chairs/Senior PC Members: WWW2014 (Workshop Track), AAAI 2013 ("AI and the Web" track), WWW 2013 ("Bridging Structured and Unstructured Data" Track), WSDM 2012 (Best Paper Award Committee), ICDE 2011 (Demo Track), WSDM 2011, KDD 2010.
  • PC Members for SIGMOD, VLDB, ICDE, KDD, EDBT, ICDM, WWW, ASONAM, SIGIR, WSDM, CIKM, AAAI in recent years.