Focus On: Technical Committee on Biometrics Systems


The term biometrics comes from the Greek words bios and metrikos. Biometrics deals with
identification of individuals based on their biological or behavioral characteristics[1]. Up to now, a number
of biometrics can be available, e.g., fingerprint, face, gait, iris, DNA (deoxyribonucleic acid), hand and
finger geometry, palm print, signature, and voice, etc. Alphonse Bertillon developed and then practiced
the idea of using a number of body measurements to identify criminals in the mid-19th century. Then,
people discovered the distinctiveness of the human fingerprints in the late 19th century [2]. Compared
with other measures, biometrics cannot be borrowed, stolen, and forgotten, and it is reliable.

Biometric recognition is a process which exploits one or more recognition approaches to recognize a
person (or sample) based on a pattern derived from a specific physiological or behavioral characteristic
that the person (or sample) possesses. We take face recognition which is one important research
branch of biometric recognition as an example. Face recognition usually includes two main steps. The
first step is the training step. It first performs some preprocessing procedures such as face image
detection from the established face database. Then, we extract the features from the face images and
construct the training model. The second step is the testing step. For the testing samples, we also need
the preprocessing procedures that are the same as those in the training step. Finally, we classify or
recognize these preprocessed testing samples using the constructed training model. the A biometrics
system [3] is essentially a pattern-recognition system using the biometric recognition technique. In
general, there are two modes of biometrics systems. The first mode is verification which compares a
sample against a single stored template. The second one is identification which searches a sample
against a database of templates.

Due to significant advances in the field of computer processing, automated biometric recognition has
become available over the last decades, and has been attracting increasing interest. Each year,
researchers propose a great number of biometric recognition techniques such as face and fingerprint
recognition techniques that are applied to solve the real-world problems. There exist various biometrics
systems and applications that have provided significant facilities for our lives and society, and many
tentative biometrics technologies will be explored. If we use the keyword “face recognition,” which is only
a branch of biometric recognition, to retrieve from the popular academic indices, we can find 18,120
entries in IEEE Xplore, 11,907 in Elsevier’s Scopus, and 2,8900,00 in Google scholar.

Nevertheless, there is currently no IEEE Technical Committee with focus on biometrics systems and
applications. Also, biometrics technologies are faced with challenges such as technologies stability and
performance should be improved and some technologies suffer from users acceptance barrier. Moreover,
new and potential state-of-art biometrics technologies are waiting for exploring. As a result, it is
significant to establish a committee to promote biometrics technologies.

Our Goals

We aim to build a community of biometrics system and application experts, who are well known
scholars in academic organizations or senior engineering experts. This community will be devoted to the
development of more secure, efficient and convenient biometrics technologies and systems and the
deployment and applications of these biometrics technologies[4]. We also take attention to new and
significant branches of biometrics such as medical biometrics. Our principal objective is to provide the
best form for exchanging ideas and achievements among biometrics system researchers and engineers
through scientific events. The technical committee of biometrics systems and applications aims to
broaden the bridge to emerging biometrics technologies and the potential applications, making these
technologies more practical and useful.

Our Activities

We plan to organize or support high quality international conferences and workshops, editing special
issues for biometrics system on the publications of the IEEE SMC Society, and organizing new
sessions at SMC conferences. Specifically, these are as follows:

  1. 2014 International Conference on Medical Biometrics, Shenzhen, China;
  2. Special issue of SMC journals for Biometrics;
  3. New session, Biometrics Systems & Applications, at SMC Conferences;
  4. Summer school on biometrics providing a link between young researchers and senior scientists and

We also are considering establishing a platform such as building a website which is used to show the
biometrics system software or other products on biometrics. The members can share their codes on this
platform. On the other hand, this platform will play an important role in recruiting new technical
committee (TC) members who spread all over the world. It helps our potential TC members to know and
contact each other.


Co-Chairs: David Zhang; Yong Xu

Current Members:

  • Fabio Scotti, Uinversita’degli Studi di Milano, Italy;
  • John Y. Chiang, National Sun Yatsen University, Taiwan;
  • Xiaoyi Jiang, University of Munster, Gemeny;
  • Xudong Jiang, Nanyang Technological University, Singapore;
  • Qinghan Xiao, Defence Research and Development, Canada;
  • Norman Poh, University of Surrey, Guildford UK;
  • Bob Zhang, University of Macau, Macau;
  • Vivek Kanhangad, Indian Institute of Technology Indore, Indian;
  • Pong C. Yuen, Hong Kong Baptist University, Hong Kong

Researchers who are interested in the biometrics system are encouraged to join this TC. If want to join,
please feel free to contact David Zhang ([email protected]). We will do our best to provide a
good research platform for all the TC members.

Our Five Year Plan

Our five year plan includes organizing or co-hosting three international conferences and two summer
schools on biometrics system and application, editing two special issues for biometrics on SMC
journals, building one website, and recruiting about one hundred TC members.


  1. A. Jain, et al., “Introduction to biometrics,” in Biometrics, ed: Springer, 2002, pp. 1-41.
  2. A. K. Jain, et al., “An introduction to biometric recognition,” IEEE Transactions on Circuits and
    Systems for Video Technology, vol. 14, pp. 4-20, 2004.
  3. D. Zhang, et al., Multispectral Biometrics- Systems & Applications. UK: Springer Verlag, 2013.
  4. D. Zhang, et al., Advanced pattern recognition technologies with applications to biometrics:
    Information Science Reference-Imprint of: IGI Publishing, 2008.