Dr. Letaief received a B.S. with distinction and a Ph.D. from Purdue University. He served as a faculty member at the University of Melbourne, Australia. In 1993, he joined the Hong Kong University of Science and Technology (HKUST), where he served as Dean of Engineering. Under his leadership, HKUST Engineering has reached new heights and was ranked #14 worldwide in 2015 according to QS World University Rankings. In 2015, he joined HBKU as Provost (chief academic officer) to help establish a research-intensive university in Qatar working with partners including Northwestern University, Carnegie Mellon University, Cornell University, and Texas A&M University.
As an esteemed scholar, he is recognized as an ISI Highly Cited Researcher, which puts him among preeminent researchers who are most highly cited and comprise less than one-half of one percent of all published authors. He is an IEEE Fellow and HKIE Fellow, and received many esteemed awards including the Michael Medal for Distinguished Teaching, the 2009 IEEE Marconi Prize Award in Wireless Communications, the 2010 Purdue University Outstanding ECE Alumni Award, the 2011 IEEE Harold Sobol Award, and 12 IEEE Best Paper Awards. He has served as a consultant for several organizations. He is founding Editor-in-Chief of IEEE Transactions on Wireless Communications. He has chaired many IEEE leading conferences such as ICC and WCNC, and served in many IEEE leadership positions, including ComSoc Vice-President for Technical Activities, Treasurer, Vice-President for Conferences, and Director of Journals. He has also served and provided strong representation for ComSoc on major IEEE committees and boards (e.g., Publication-Services and Products Board, Asia-Pacific Board, Periodicals Committee, Technical Activity Council, Fellow Committee, and Finance Committee).