Jack W. Davidson is a professor of computer science in the School of Engineering and Applied Science and director of the Cyber Defense program of study at the University of Virginia. Davidson’s research interests include compilers, computer security, programming languages, computer architecture, and embedded systems. He is the principal investigator on several ongoing grants to develop comprehensive methods for protecting software from malicious attacks.
Davidson is a Fellow of the Association for Computing Machinery (ACM) and a life member and Fellow of the IEEE. He is a member of the Institute for Information Infrastructure Protection. He served as an associate editor of ACM’s Transactions on Programming Languages and Systems for six years, and as an associate editor of ACM’s Transactions on Architecture and Compiler Optimizations for eight years. He served as chair of ACM’s Special Interest Group on Programming Languages (SIGPLAN) from 2005 to 2007. He currently serves on the ACM executive council and is co-chair of ACM’s publication board.
He is co-author of two best-selling introductory programming textbooks: C++ Program Design: An Introduction to Object-Oriented Programming, 3rd edition and Java 5.0 Program Design: An Introduction to Object-Oriented Programming, 2nd edition. Davidson and his colleague, James P. Cohoon, received the 2008 IEEE Taylor L. Booth award for their sustained effort to transform introductory computer science education.
He received a Ph.D. in computer science from the University of Arizona.