Dr. Halima Bensmail | Hamad Bin Khalifa University
Hamad Bin Khalifa University



Halima Bensmail

Principal Scientist and Joint associate Professor
Qatar Computing Research Institute QCRI
Data Analytics

  • Phone+974-4454-0195
  • Office location1116, First Floor, HBKU Research Development Complex


I received her PhD from the university of Pierre & Marie Currie (Paris 6) in France. She worked as a postdoc at UW (University of Washington - Seattle) and at the FHCRC (Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center). I also spend two years as a Data Theory scientist at the University of Leiden - Netherlands. In 2000, I joined the University of Tennessee as an assistant professor in Statistics, Operation and Management Sciences department and was promoted to associate professor in 2005. I also held an associate professor of bioinformatics and biostatistics at Virginia Medical School (Public Health) from 2006-2009. I moved to QCRI (Qatar Computing Research Institute) in 2011 as a senior scientist.

Currently I am a principal scientist at QCRI-HBKU and a joint associate professor at the college of Computer and Science Engineering-HBKU working on statistical machine learning and bioinformatics. I have published more than 70 peer reviewed papers in high impact Journal such as Nucleic acids research, Pattern recognition, Bioinformatics, Statistics and computing, Journal of American statistical Association and received several distinguished awards by the International Federation of Classification Society, Qatar Foundation, Turkish-Information Complexity in Statistics and was co-PI in successful research grants in Qatar and abroad and served as a reviewer for National Institute of Health (NIH) and National sciences Foundation (NSF).


Research Interests

  • Statistics; Frequentist and Bayesian
  • Bioinformatics
  • Data sciences
  • Machine learning
  • Mathematical and statistical Modeling and algorithms


Principal Scientist of Statistical Machine Learning

Qatar Computing Research Institute, Doha, Qatar

November 2017 - Present
  • Senior Scientist of Statistical Machine learning, CS&E Center

    Qatar Computing Research Institute, Doha, Qatar

    March 2011 - November 2017
  • Joint Associate Professor

    HBKU, Doha, Qatar

    March 2016 - Present
  • Associate Professor

    Eastern Virginia Medical School College of Public Health

    August 2006 - January 2009
  • Associate Professor

    University of Tennessee Department of Statistics, Operation and Management Sciences (SOMS)

    April 2005 - August 2006
  • Assistant Professor

    University of Tennessee Department of Statistics, Operation and Management Sciences (SOMS)

    September 2000 - April 2005
  • Adjunct Associate Professor

    Oak Ridge National Laboratory

    September 2005 - August 2006
  • Research Scientist

    University Of Leiden, Organization for Scientific Research, The Netherlands.

    April 1997 - September 2000
  • Research Scientist

    Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center, Seattle, USA.

    October 1994 - May 1996
  • PostDoctoral

    University of Washington, Seattle, USA.

    April 1994 - September 1994
  • Lecturer-Math and Stat

    Montgeron High School, Paris, France.

    September 1992 - May 1993
  • Lecturer-Math and Stat

    Monte LaJolie High School, Paris, France.

    September 1991 - May 1992
  • Research Assistant-Computing

    INRIA, Versailles, France.

    September 1990 - May 1991
  • Computing Assistant

    La Sorbonne Université, Paris, France.

    October 1989 - June 1990


Ph.D. in Biostatistics/Statistics

Université Pierre and Marie-Curie & INRIA-Paris

  • M.S. in Statistical Machine Learning

    Université Pierre and Marie-Curie-Paris

  • B.S. in Applied Mathematics and Statistics

    Faculty of Sciences, Rabat, Morocco


Selected Publications

  • M. Hamza, M. AuPetit, M. Seldmair and H. Bensmail

    ClustMe: A Visual Quality Measure for Ranking Monochrome Scatterplots based on Cluster Patterns. Eurographics Conference on Visualization (EuroVis).

  • R. Rawi, R. Mall, Ch.H. Shen, N.A. Doria-Rose, S. Katie Farney, H. Bensmail, A. Shiakolas, J. Zhou, T.W. Chun, R. M. Lynch, J.R. Mascola, P.D. Kwong & G.Y. Chuang

    Accurate Prediction of Antibody Resistance in Clinical HIV-1 Isolates. Nature Scientific Reports.

  • H. Park, R. Mall, F.H. Alharbi, S. Sanvito, N. Tabet, H. Bensmail, F. El-Mellouhi

    Exploring New Approaches towards the Formability of Mixed-Ion Perovskite by DFT and Machine Learning. Physical Chemistry Chemical Physics.

  • A. Elbasir, B. Moovarkumudalvan, K. Kunji, P. Kolatkar, R. Mall, and H. Bensmail

    A Deep Learning Framework for sequence-Based Protein Crystallization Prediction. Bioinformatics.

  • E. Ullah, R. Mall1, M.M. Abbas, K. Kunji, A. Q. Nato Jr, H. Bensmail, E. M. Wijsman, M. Saad

    Comparison and Assessment of Family- and Population-based Genotype Imputation Methods in Large Pedigrees. Genome Research.

  • E. Ullah, M. Aupetit, A. Das, A. Patil, N. Al Muftah, R. Rawi, M. Saad and H. Bensmail

    KinVis: A visualization tool to detect cryptic relatedness in genetic datasets. Bioinformatics.

  • IK Khan, A. Jain, R. Rawi, H. Bensmail, J. Wren and D. Kihara

    Prediction of protein group function by iterative classification on functional relevance network. Bioinformatics.

  • R Mall, E Ullah, K Kunji, M Ceccarelli, H Bensmail

    An unsupervised disease module identification technique in biological networks using novel quality metric based on connectivity, conductance and modularity. F1000Research, 7.

  • R Mall, E Ullah, K Kunji, M Ceccarelli, H Bensmail

    An unsupervised disease module identification technique in biological networks using novel quality metric based on connectivity, conductance and modularity. F1000Research, 7.

  • E Ullah, R Mall and H Bensmail

    Harnessing Qatar Biobank to Understand Type 2 Diabetes in Adult Qataris. Journal of Translational medicine.

  • R Mall, L Cerulo, L Garofano, V Frattini, K Kunji, H Bensmail, TS Sabedot

    RGBM: Regularized gradient R boosting machines for identification of the transcriptional regulators of discrete glioma subtypes. Nucleic Acids Research.

  • R Mall, R Rawi, E Ullah, K Kunji, A Khadir, A Tiss, J Abubaker, M Dehbi and H. [23] R. Rawi, K. Kunji, A. Haoudi and H. Bensmail

    Coevolution Analysis of HIV-1 Envelope Glycoprotein Complex. PlosOne Journal. http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0143245

  • R. Rawi, M. Elanbari and H. Bensmail

    Model selection emphasises the importance of non-chromosomal information in genetic studies. PlosOne Journal. http://dx.doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0117014

  • E. Ullah E., M. Shahzad, R. Rawi, M. Dehbi, K. Suhre, M. Selim, D. Mook and H. Bensmail

    Integrative (1H) NMR-based metabolomic profiling to identify Type-2 Diabetes biomarkers: an application to a Qatari population, Journal of Metabolomics. doi:10.4172/2153-0769.1000136

  • J. Wang and H. Bensmail

    Unified framework for representing and ranking. Pattern Recognition Journal. Volume 47, Issue 6, June 2014, Pages 2293–2300. doi:10.1016/j.patcog.2013.12.003

  • J. Wang, H. Bensmail*

    Feature selection and multi-kernel learning for sparse representation on a manifold. Neural Network Journal. Available online 28 November

  • J. Wang and H. Bensmail

    Unified Framework for representing and ranking. Journal of Pattern Recognition. //dx.doi.org/10.1016/j.patcog.2013.12.003i

  • J. Wang, H. Bensmail, and X. Gao

    Joint learning and weighting of visual vocabulary for bag-of-feature based tissue classification. Pattern Recognition Journal. 46(12): 3249-3255. doi 10.1016/j.patcog.2013.05.001

  • J. Wang, H. Bensmail, and X. Gao

    Multiple graph regularized nonnegative matrix factorization. Pattern Recognition Journal. 46(10): 2840-2847. doi>10.1016/j.patcog.2013.03.007

  • Wang, H. Bensmail

    Multiple Graph Regularized Protein Domain Ranking, BMC Bioinformatics, 13:307

  • Kwon, Y, Bozdogan, H. and Bensmail, H.

    Performance of Model Selection Criteria in Bayesian Threshold VAR (TVAR) Models. Econometric Reviews, Vol. 28 (1-3), pp. 83-101. doi/abs/10.1080/07474930802387894

  • Haoudi, A, and Bensmail, H

    Bioinformatics and Data mining in Proteomics. Expert Review of Proteomics, Vol. 3, No 3, pp. 333-343. doi:10.1586/14789450.3.3.333

  • Wang, C. H., Kuo, W, and Bensmail, H.

    Application of Image Processing Techniques and EM Algorithm to Detect Defect Patterns in Wafer Maps”. IEEE transactions. doi:10.1080/07408170600733236

  • Bensmail H. Golek, A. Semmens, O. J. and Haoudi, A.

    Bayesian Fast-Fourier Transform Based Clustering Method for Proteomics Data. Journal of Bioinformatics, 21(10), pp. 2210-24. doi:10.1093/bioinformatics/bti383

  • Bensmail, H., Celeux, G., Raftery, A. & Robert, C.

    Inference in Model-Based Cluster Analysis. Journal of Statistics and Computing, 1, N10, pp.1-10. ISSN: 0960-3174 (Print) 1573-1375 (Online)

  • Bensmail, H. & Celeux, G.

    Regularized Discriminant Analysis. Journal of the American Statistical Association (JASA), Vol. 91, No 436, pp. 1743—1748. doi:10.1080/01621459.1996.10476746

  • M. Elanbari, R. Rawi, M. Ceccarelli and H. Bensmail

    HADAP: A Hadamard-Dantzig estimation of a sparse precision matrix. COMPUTATIONTOOLS2015: The Sixth International Conference on Computational Logics, Algebras, Programming, Tools, and Benchmarking Proceedings.

  • M. Elanbari, N. Nemmour, O. Bouhali, R. Rawi, A. Sheharyar, and H. Bensmail*

    Computational Neuro-Modeling of Visual Memory: Multimodal Imaging and Analysis. Brain Informatics and Health, 21-32.

  • J. Wang and H. Bensmail *

    Domain Transfer Nonnegative Matrix Factorization. IJCNN 2014. International Joint Conference on Neural Network, pp 3605-3612.

  • Bensmail H., S. Anjum, O. Bouhali and M. Elanbari

    RAFNI: Robust Analysis of Functional NeuroImages with nonnormal –stable error, Neural Information Processing, 624-631, LNCS: Lecture Notes in Computer Science.