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News June 2017: Our paper "A generic transformation for optimal repair bandwidth and rebuilding access in MDS codes" is one of the three winners of the 2017 IEEE Jack Keil Wolf ISIT Student Paper Award! (More details here) Jie completed the majority of the work reported in this paper while with UTK on a one-year CSC fellowship. We would like to thank the China Scholarship Council for the generous support which enabled this work. Congratulations, Jie!


Associate Professor

Department of EECS, The University of Tennessee at Knoxville / Aug. 2014 - present

Adjunct Assistant/Associate Professor

Department of Electrical Engineering, Columbia University / Jan. 2011 - Dec. 2013

Member of Technical Staff-Research

AT&T Labs-Research, Florham Park (Bedminster), NJ / Oct. 2007 - Jul. 2014

Postdoctoral Researcher

EPFL, Lausanne, Switzerland / Sep. 2005 - Sep. 2007


Cornell University, Ithaca, NY

Ph.D. Electrical and Computer Engineering / Aug. 2005

Tsinghua University, Beijing, China

Bachelor of Engineering (BE), Electronic Engineering / Jul. 2000


2014 IEEE ComSoc DSTC Best Paper Award

For the paper "Characterizing the rate-region of the (4,3,3) exact-repair regenerating codes". This award is given to a single paper every year in the general area of data storage research.

AT&T Key Contributor Award

For technical contribution in AT&T / 2010, 2011, 2013

Liu-Memorial Award, Cornell University

For excellence in graduate study and research / 2004

Five Selected Recent Publications

Matched multiuser Gaussian source channel communications via uncoded schemes

C. Tian, J. Chen, S. Diggavi and S. Shamai, IEEE Trans. IT, Vol. 63, No. 7, pp. 4155-4171, Jul. 2017.

Layered exact-repair regenerating codes via embedded erasure correction and block designs

C. Tian, B. Sasidharan, V. Aggarwal, P. Vijay Kumar and V. Vaishampayan, IEEE Trans. Inform. Theory, Apr. 2015.

Characterizing the rate-region of the (4,3,3) exact-repair regenerating codes

C. Tian, IEEE Journal on Secelected Areas in Communications, May 2014.

Optimality and approximate optimality of source-channel separation in networks

C. Tian, J. Chen, S. N. Diggavi and S. Shamai, IEEE Trans. Inform. Theory, Feb. 2014

The achievable distortion region of sending a bivariate Gaussian source on the Gaussian broadcast channel

C. Tian, S. N. Diggavi and S. Shamai, IEEE Trans. Inform. Theory, Oct. 2011

To selected publications by topic, or chronological publication list.

SCITL: Solutions of Computed Information-Theoretic Limits

We recently developed a computational approach to identify and prove information-theoretical limits, whose potential is yet to be fully explored. Here is a collection of results on several data storage and communication problems. Unsolicited contributions are welcome. If you have a burning question and think this approach may be helpful, please contact me.

To see the results on the SCITL page.

Research Group

Current Students

Ramin NABATI / Ph.D. program, started Fall 2015
Kai ZHANG / Ph.D. program, started Fall 2015
Tianli ZHOU / Ph.D. program, started Fall 2015
Sara MOUSAVI / Ph.D. program, started Fall 2016
Hao YE / Ph.D. program, started Fall 2016

Visiting Scholars or Students

Jie LI, Southwest Jiaotong University, Oct. 2015-Oct. 2016.


The University of Tennessee Knoxville

ECE 611: Convex Optimization / Fall 2016
ECE 342: Fundamentals of Communication / Spring 2016, Spring 2017
ECE 644: Codng and Information Theory / Fall 2015
ECE 342: Analog Communication, AM and FM / Fall 2014, Spring 2015

Columbia University

ELEN E6884: Topics in Data Compression / Spring 2011
ELEN E6718: Algebraic Coding Theory / Fall 2011, 2012, 2013
ELEN E6712: Communication Theory / Spring 2013

Ecole Polytechnique Federale de Lausanne

IC-62: Source Coding Theory and Practice / Winter 2006

Services and Membership


Associate Editor of IEEE Signal Processing Letters / Feb. 2012-Feb. 2014
Editor of IEEE Transactions on Communications / Jan. 2016-present

IEEE Senior Member

Elected Feb. 2012

Conference TPC Member

ChinaCom-08, NetCod-12, NVMW-14, ISIT-15, IEEE Bigdata-Data Storage Workshop-2015,2016.

Some Fun Facts

Erdos Number = 3

I had the previlige of working with N.J.A. Sloane at AT&T Labs.

Number of Coauthors Who Are Shannon Awardees = 5

Perhaps as an alternative definition of the "Shannon Number"?