Wen Gao received the B.S. degree in computer science from Harbin University of Science and Technology in 1982, the M.S. degree in computer science from Harbin Institute of Technology in 1985, the Ph.D. degree in computer science from Harbin Institute of Technology in 1988, Harbin, China, and the Ph.D. degree in electronics engineering from the University of Tokyo in 1991, Tokyo, Japan.

He is a professor in the Department of Computer Science and Technology atPeking University, Beijing, China. He is the founding director of NELVT (National Engineering Lab. on Video Technology) at Peking University.He is also the Chief Scientist of the National Basic Research Program of China (973 Program) on Video Coding Technology from 2009, and the vice president of National Natural Science Foundation of China from 2013.

He joined with the Harbin Institute of Technology from 1991 to 1995, as professor and head of computer science department. He was with the Institute of Computing Technology (ICT), Chinese Academy of Sciences (CAS), as professor, from 1996 to 2005. During his career at CAS, he served as the managing director of ICT from 1998 to 1999, the executive vice president of Graduate School of CAS(now the University of CAS) from 2000 to 2004, the vice president of University of Science and Technology China from 2000 to 2003.

He is working in the areas of multimedia and computer vision, including video coding, video analysis, multimedia retrieval, face recognition, and multimodal interface. He published six books and over 700 technical articles in refereed journals and proceedings in above areas. His publications have been cited for over 21,000 times according to Google Scholar.

He served or serves on the editorial board for several journals, such as IEEE Transactions on Circuits and Systems for Video Technology, IEEE Transactions on Multimedia, IEEE Transactions on Autonomous Mental Development, EURASIP Journal of Image Communications, Journal of Visual Communication and Image Representation. He chaired a number of prestigious international conferences on multimedia and video signal processing, such as IEEE ICME 2007, ACM Multimedia 2009, IEEE ISCAS 2013, and also served on the advisory and technical committees of numerous professional organizations. He earned many awards such as one second class award in technology invention by the State Council, and six second class awards in science and technology achievement by State Council.

Prof. Gao is active in national and international academic activities. He has been featured by IEEE Spectrum in June 2005 as one of the "Ten To Watch" among China's leading technologists.He served as the chairman of steering committee for intelligent computing system in 863 Hi-Tech Program from 1996 to 2001.He served or serves as the vice chairman of Chinese Association of Image and Graphics, the vice chairman of Chinese Association of Software Industry. He was the Head of Chinese Delegation to the Moving Picture Expert Group (MPEG) of International Standard Organization (ISO) from 1997 to 2011. He is the chair of Audio Video coding Standard (AVS) working group in China, and the chair of IEEE 1857 standard working group, which is a new standard working force in IEEE standard society for internet multimedia coding.

He is a fellow of IEEE, a fellow of ACM, and a member of Chinese Academy of Engineering.