Computer Science

Computer science is part of a dynamic hub that links to research throughout SEAS and to the rest of the University, drawing from fields such as Electrical Engineering, Physics, Chemistry, and Biology, as well as Harvard's professional schools in medicine and business.

Computer scientists at Harvard investigate a wide range of topics, including groundbreaking work in provably secure cryptography, the implementation of sensor nets, developments at the interface of economics and computer science, and discoveries in VLSI.

Students and researchers are involved in an increasing number of interdisciplinary initiatives across the University such as the nascent Wyss Institute for Biologically Inspired Engineering and the Center for Research in Computation and Society.

The state-of-the-art building that houses activities in computer science and electrical engineering, Maxwell Dworkin, was underwritten by two of the School's most famous attendees, Bill Gates COL '77 and his classmate Steven Ballmer '77.

Looking forward, the faculty have identified five long-terms goals to support advancement in teaching and research:

  • retain and attract first rate computer science faculty and graduate students;
  • offer an academic program at the undergraduate level that is accessible to students with varied backgrounds;
  • offer courses that are attractive to students outside the concentration;
  • work with other departments and schools to provide rigor and depth in interdisciplinary fields; and
  • bolster efforts to support computation for society.