I am Khalil (, ), and I am an NLP & Generative AI Researcher, working as Senior Research Scientist at TikTok ( Bytedance Research) in Dr. Heng Wang’s team. I previously worked as AI Research Scientist at Meta. I obtained my Computer Science PhD degree at the University of California, San Diego (UCSD) in 2022, and my research focuses on democratizing Natural Language Processing and applying it to user-written text and under-studied applications. I have also won my department’s Doctoral Dissertation Award.

During my PhD, I interned at various big tech companies . (1) Summer 2019: Adobe Research’s NLP Group, where I developed a state-of-the-art parser and the Label Attention Layer. (2) Summer 2020: Amazon Alexa, where I worked on Reinforcement Learning for Controllable Abstractive Summarization. (3) Summer 2021: Meta AI (then known as Facebook AI), where I worked on Entity Linking, especially for Consumer Health text data. (4) Fall 2021: Google Brain, where I worked on Task-Oriented Dialog with Rewards.

My PhD research was funded by the U.S. National Institutes of Health through the National Institute on Aging, Adobe Research Gifts, and an Amazon Research Award (ARA) through a proposal I wrote for AWS AI titled: “Learning Representations for Voice-Based Conversational Agents for Older Adults” (see media coverage here: UC San Diego News, Tech Xplore, TekCrispy (en español), UCSD CSE News, UCSD Engineering News, UCSD Engineering on Twitter, UCSD Engineering on Facebook).

Prior to my PhD, I received my Master’s and Bachelor’s degrees in Computer Science from the École Polytechnique Fédérale de Lausanne (EPFL), in Switzerland. As part of my Bachelor’s, I spent a year on exchange at Singapore’s Nanyang Technological University. I interned for a summer at Infosys in their Bangalore, India headquarters, and for a semester at the EPFL-based Digital Lab.




  • December: Invited Lecture on Transformers at the Math & Maroc webinar! Watch it here.
  • December: Invited to serve as Area Chair for NAACL 2024!
  • December: Attending EMNLP 2023 in Singapore. Come check out our ArabicNLP Conference!
  • November: Our team at TikTok releases InfiMM-Eval, a benchmark for Complex Open-Ended Reasoning evaluation for Multi-modal LLMs!
  • July: Overjoyed to join TikTok ( Bytedance Research) as Senior Research Scientist!
  • July: Invited Lecture on Transformers at the AI Summer School held at Al Akhawayn University in Ifrane (AUI), Morocco, and organized by AUI and MoroccoAI.
  • June: Received the UCSD CSE Doctoral Dissertation Award for 2022 in person in San Diego!
  • June: Invited Research Talks at TikTok, Spotify, and Apple.
  • May: Invited Research Talks at Toyota Research Institute, and Tencent AI Lab.
  • May: Served on the Master’s Thesis Committee for Aiman Belmokhtar (University of Miami) on Moroccan Darija text-to-speech models.
  • April: Invited to be part of the organizing committee of the First Arabic NLP Conference (WANLP 2023), co-located with EMNLP 2023!


  • December: Honored to receive the UCSD CSE Doctoral Dissertation Award for 2022!
  • October: 1 shared task paper accepted at WANLP 2022 with my mentee Ahmed!
  • August: 1 paper accepted at COLING 2022 with my mentee Harpreet! This work is the last chapter of my doctoral dissertation.
  • July: We are organizing an affinity group workshop at NeurIPS 2022 for North Africans in ML!
  • June: Call me Dr. Mrini – I have graduated! Beyond excited to join Meta as AI Research Scientist!
  • May: Excited to head to ACL 2022! See you in Dublin, Ireland!
  • March: Paper with my mentee Abderrahmane on Moroccan Darija summarization accepted at the AfricaNLP workshop at ICLR 2022!
  • February: 2/2 papers accepted to ACL 2022, including my internship project at Facebook AI!

All opinions shared online are my own, and do not necessarily represent the views of my employer.