The unique vision and interdisciplinarity of KAUST make it the most exciting place for research on visually understanding massive data, whether from neuroscience, materials science, computational fluid dynamics, mathematical physics, neural networks, or other areas. My research is in visualization, and few have said it as well as John Tukey: "The greatest value of a picture is when it forces us to notice what we never expected to see." (Exploratory Data Analysis, 1977)

Markus Hadwiger is a Professor of Computer Science (CS) and a Founder of KAUST. His research interests are in scientific visualization and visual computing, where he performs fundamental and applied research in the High-Performance Visualization group at the Visual Computing Center of KAUST.

Education and early career

He received his Ph.D. and Diploma of Engineering from Vienna University of Technology, in 2004 and 2000 respectively.

Areas of expertise and current scientific interests

Visual computing with a focus on the visualization of extreme-scale data, volume visualization, flow visualization, differential geometry and mathematical physics in visualization, large-scale image and volume processing, multi-resolution techniques, data streaming and out-of-core processing, domain-specific languages for visual computing, interactive segmentation, and GPU algorithms and architecture.

Editorial activities and memberships

Professor Hadwiger is the author of numerous scientific papers and books such as Real-Time Volume Graphics.

Why visual computing?

Visual computing is an extremely exciting and diverse research area. It is very interdisciplinary, which enables exciting collaborations with researchers and engineers from a broad range of scientific and engineering disciplines. This always keeps our research exciting and novel. Visual computations are also very satisfying because visual feedback is much more immediate than just looking at raw numbers.


I am proud to be at KAUST since its foundation and to collaborate with inspiring colleagues. CEMSE is the best place where cutting-edge education is tailored to real-world applications.

Education Profile

Awards and Distinctions

  • Honorable Mention for Best Paper Award (top four papers) at IEEE Information Visualization 2014.
  • Best Poster Award at Symposium on Biological Data Visualization (BioVis 2014).
  • Honorable Mention for Best Paper Award (top five papers) at IEEE Pacific Visualization 2013.
  • Honorable Mention for Best Paper Award (top three papers) at IEEE Scientific Visualization 2012.
  • Best Application Paper Award at IEEE Visualization 2007.