P. Vijay Kumar received the B.Tech. and M.Tech. degrees from IIT Kharagpur and IIT Kanpur respectively, and the Ph.D. degree from USC in 1983, all in Electrical Engineering. From 1983 to 2003 he was on the faculty of the EE-Systems Department at USC. Since 2003, he has been on the faculty of IISc Bengaluru and was chairman of the Department of Electrical Communication Engineering from 2011-2014. Since 2010, he has also been an adjunct research professor at USC.

His current research interests include codes for distributed storage and intrusion-detection algorithms for wireless sensor networks. He is an ISI highly-cited author and a Fellow of IEEE as well as the Indian National Academy of Engineering. He is also co-recipient of the 1995 IEEE Information Theory Society Prize-Paper award, a Best-Paper award at the DCOSS 2008 conference on sensor networks and the IEEE Data Storage Best-Paper Award of 2011/2012. A pseudorandom sequence family designed in a 1996 paper co-authored by him now forms the short scrambling code of the 3G WCDMA cellular standard. At IISc, he received the Rustum Choksi Award for Excellence in Research in Engineering in 2013 and from 2012-15 held the Tata Chem Chair. He was on the Board of Governors of the IEEE Information Theory Society in 2013-15, was a plenary speaker at ISIT 2014 and a TPC Co-Chair of ISIT 2015 held in Hong Kong.