Iris Bahar

Department Head and Professor, Computer Science

Since January 2022, Iris Bahar is the Department Head and Professor at the Colorado School of Mines. Her research interests lie broadly in areas of computer system design and design automation. A main theme of her research over the years has been energy-efficient and reliable computing, from robots, to high-end processors, embedded systems, and emerging technologies.

Between her M.S. and Ph.D studies, she worked for 5 years at Digital Equipment Corporation, mainly on their VAX microprocessor designs. Prior to joining CS@Mines as Department Head, she was faculty at Brown University for 26 years with a joint appointment in the School of Engineering and Department of Computer Science.

Her research has been continuously funded since 1997 through various industrial and government sources, including the NSF (including a career award), DARPA, DoD, the Semiconductor Research Corporation (SRC), Intel, IBM, Facebook, and NASA. She is the 2019 recipient of the Marie R. Pistilli Women in Engineering Achievement Award and the Brown University School of Engineering Award for Excellence in Teaching in Engineering. She is an IEEE Fellow an ACM Distinguished Scientist.


Personal webpage 


  • B.S. Computer Engineering, University of Illinois, Urbana 1986
  • M.S. Electrical Engineering, University of Illinois, Urbana 1987
  • Ph.D. Electrical and Computer Engineering, University of Colorado, Boulder 1995


Prof. Bahar has published over 200 articles on diverse topics in electronic design automation, computer architecture design, and low power computing. While much of her work falls within “classical” computer systems themes, she is also interested in working in interdisciplinary areas that bring together researchers from across the engineering disciplines and beyond. Most recently, her research interests have evolved to include approximate computing, robotics, machine learning, and security.